Welcome to the first edition of ďStanding in the ShadowsĒ for Vanuatu! For those readers unfamiliar with it, each season our writers and mods ďstand in the shadowĒ of a Survivor until their torch is snuffed. You get to read what we believe is really going on in the mind of each player. Without further ado...
Wow, the natives freaked me right the hell out. The guys were standing right behind us women, and the natives came running at us with spears. I knew I had no use for men. I stopped with the weird one name Scout on the way to camp, but that didnít last long as we were made to go again. By challenge time I was so thirsty, I really could of used a nice tall glass of Republic Of Tea Passion Mango Iced Tea. At the challenge I may have helped with the maze thing, but I was so dehydrated I canít swear it was me. We won, of course, as men are useless. The next three days should be interesting.
"Don't pick me, or at least not first." That's all I could think as the Vanuatu tribe chief was choosing the person that would be required to climb the pig fat laden pole to retrieve the good luck spirit stone in last night's opening ceremony. Of course, I was first and now all I'm thinking is right away I come across as a physical threat, or big weenie. Fortunately, I didn't have too much time to think, and I slathered my arms and legs with sand making it to the top without any problems. But I figure, since no one else even had to attempt the climb, maybe everyone just thinks it was a fairly simple task. (at least they don't know I'm a former Marine -- yet anyway). The rest of time I just tried to remain as neutral as possible. Why I was lumped in as one of the "young guys" is beyond me. I'm the same age as Chris and Travis for pete's sake. That's right, I was born in 1970 so that makes me extra cool. In the end, I made my tribal council decision based on the person I thought did the least to fit into the group, and that was Rory. Hopefully, this strategy of not trying to align with anyone so early on will prove to be a good one. Overall, I feel pretty confident about my chances. I hope to become a fan favorite. Hey, I'm nice, intelligent, accomplished, and get along with everyone so hopefully my only fans won't be the annoying fangirlie types.
When all those tribal warriors rushed us on the beach, I was a little nervous, but then I saw that these guys know how to treat a guy. We had the best seats in the house. I drank the mud and only had to gag a little, unlike that construction worker who was spitting all over the place. I rocked at the challenge. Iím not the one who wimped out on the balance beam, I pushed through and made it look easy, man. Then when we made up the camp, everyone was set to vote out Chris. Where did all those votes for me come from? This sucks. I didnít want to be the first one voted off. No one ever remembers the first one off. You know what? I didnít learn one damned thing about myself, so you can take that and stuff it, Survivor.
Let the games begin! I am pretty excited about this experience. Perhaps even more excited than when my school got those new ink resistant text books. No longer will I get those books back marked up with ďMr. Crittenden is a chrome dome!Ē So I am in good spirits as we get into the battle. However, there has been a nagging concern. That being, when should I tell the guys about my special secret? I didnít want to alienate myself from the tribe, especially early on when they are just looking for reasons to boot you. Yet, I needed to say something soon. I was looking around at all of their feet and there was no mistaking it, I didnít have the same equipment that my tribe mates did. Finally, after I made a few friends, I called them all together and let it out. I zipped off my pants leg and showed them the reality. Yes, I bought my shoes at Payless shoes. No fancy Nikeís or Adidas for me. Payless shoes, I was embarrassed, but the guys took it well. Surprisingly, no one cared. They all seemed to be fixated on my artificial leg. I will never figure people out.
Well, I had to get to work pretty damn quick after that challenge. I was trying my best but my feet were slippery, and even hugging that beam got me nowhere. All I could do was show everyone I was trying hard, you know? Good thing Lea came up to me when got back at camp. He tipped me off about what the younger dudes were planning to do, and they were trying to kick me off! But I wasn't worried. I talked to all the other guys and we got an alliance organized real quick. At tribal council, Jeff asked me about how I felt when I couldn't cross that beam, but I didn't show any sign o' weakness. You know what though, I didn't stand around chattin' when I knew I was about to get kicked off. I did my job and that's why I'm still here. Bring on anything you want, I'm ready for it. I just hope they're about done with those damn balance beams.
Wow, I canít believe Iím actually here. Other than having to watch that boring ceremony, Iíve had a great time. Some of the women freaked out when they were killing that hog, but heck, it isnít anything I havenít done myself. I thought about going out hunting while I was here, but dang it, they wouldnít let me bring my rifle as a luxury item. Itís probably for the best. I wouldnít want to draw too much attention to myself by bringing home the bacon, so to speak. I almost made a critical error last night by stopping with Scout when she wanted to ďvisitĒ instead of finding our camp. Most of the younger girls were totally against that. I quickly realized that I needed to align myself with them for the time being as they outnumber the old gals. So, Iíll play Barbie with the girlie-girls until its time to make my move. Hopefully Iíll make it to the merge so I can better utilize my ďassetsĒ.
I couldnít believe the tribal chief separated out the women from the group. What is with these people, havenít they ever heard of a sexual discrimination lawsuit? Here I am, the youngest and cutest in the group, stuck with the menopausal hags who can't take the walking. I don't think they liked it when I wanted to keep going. Sheesh, itís not my fault that Iím younger, cuter and faster than those old bags. Iím smart as a whip, though, and didnít let them figure out that I think they suck. Iím glad there are some other women in the group who care about the things I do, like the importance of maintaining a beauty regimen. Sure, there are shelters to be built and water to gather, but thereís always someone around who takes care of that. Meanwhile, I have to make sure my skin remains moisturized while I work on my tan. Did you know that sand makes an excellent exfoliant?
Man, this is going to be some adventure. I mean, first, we get to see these guys who look like they came straight out of National Geographic slaughter a live pig, and then Chief Cowabunga smeared all the guys with the pig's blood! Then I found out it was the guys vs. the girls, I was psyched. The only thing that could have made it better was if it was also Shirts vs. Skins and we were the shirts, of course)! Anyway, we were kicking butt in the Immunity Challenge until Cletus couldn't make his way across that damned beam. Hell, you don't have to be Olga Korbut or anything...just walk across, you dumbass! Of course, thanks to him, we lost the challenge, but who would have thought that Brook would have been the one to go home? I mean, he's one of our strongest players (next to me, of course)! Boy, some of the people on this tribe must be stupider than I thought (not me, of course). Oh, and that other tribe...the one with all women? Yeah, there are some pretty hot-looking babes on that tribe, that's for sure. But, none of them are nearly as hot as me...of course.
Okay, I'm not exactly sure what happened. I thought I had gotten everyone to vote off Chris, then they voted to oust Brook instead. Maybe I didn't make myself clear. I may have to draw upon my experiences in the real world and found "Survivors for Responsible Voting." I'm not worried about anyone trying to vote me off any time soon, at least not until the merge. The tribe knows I manage one of the largest Home Depot stores in the country, and I promised them all new mitre saws; I own these guys.
I donít like it when pigs die. My eyes just about popped out of my head when the future pole-grease-supplier went from from Wilber to bacon-grease with the emotionless chop-chop of the axe. So now I'm a vegan. Which is handy, what with these rich, lush, tropical, mostly pig-free isles. And my eyes just about rolled right out of my head when my own dang tribe could not make up their minds about whether to keep on moving towards our beach, or to sit around stupidly. Scout and her bum knee were particularly irritating, as was Eliza. Does she ever shut up? It was all I could do to lie supine and make the rock seem comfortable while I stared vacantly into space and ignored her. Thank God for swim time later, where I got to worship the spirit of the sun and teach the girls how to beautify their armpits with sand. Yep, that stuff can go everywhere. Hey, swimmers, maybe you donít want to shake it out so fast, huh? Let it work for you. Sweet, cleansing, sand. And good for pole climbing, too. Well at least we won the challenge. Guess itís time to get back to my emotionless, Iím-too-cool diary entries.
When I signed on for Survivor , I never thought theyíd be sending me to heaven in the PAC. The first few minutes of this campaign we started out as civilian detainees. This sent me into combat readiness, but to my surprise our squad was treated to some local moonshine at an outdoor mess followed by a blood camo ceremony. When they brought out the grease pole, I about died from nostalgia. My unit performed admirably against the females, but for one boot that couldnít finish the obstacle course. They wanted to make him our first ejectee, but I wanted to keep him around to whip him into shape. Heís not a bad soldier, just badly trained. We dumped a pretty boy instead. Commanding this squad will be a challenge, but I'm up to it.
These girls don't know it yet, but they are playing with the perfect Survivor machine. Sensitivity? Check. I squeezed out tears of compassion when we were surrounded by all those guys waving spears. Athletic? Check. First woman across the balance beam. And I'm just as attractive as all those young gals hanging out at the water's edge. In fact, I was Miss October in this year's Equity Research Assistants calendar. But I'm a hard worker, too, and I know how to get out of the way of a machete when I'm holding bamboo. I'm invincible. They won't know what hit 'em.
This sure ain't the bayou, but I think I'm holding my own and then some. I was a little disappointed to end up on an all female team, because I was counting on these, ahem, enhancements to win me a few allies among the men. But everything is turning out just fine here at Yasur. The younger, prettier gals have accepted me into their sorority--they must sense my years of experience on the homecoming court. And yet the older misfit women, who can't read or hike in the dark, will never target me before the yappy little girls. My position is secure. After winning the challenge, I led my new tribe in a perky cheer that surely broke the men's spirits even more than losing! No one can help but see my usefulness after that. If I can handle six kids and a miniature donkey, you know I can handle Yasur!
We women got the short end of the stick in that welcome to Vanuatu by the natives. The men got to sit on logs and drink muddy water and have pig blood smeared all over their faces while all we got to do was sit off to the side on a mat and watch. Didn't seem fair, so to make up for it, we had to kick the guys' log sitting, mud drinking asses in the challenge. And we did a good job of that. Back at camp things are going well. I'm trying to find a group to hang out with, but I'm not sure where I fit in best. There's a few girlie girls worried about life without deodorant and facials. Then on the other side, there's the older ladies who are way too serious and don't care enough about deodorant. I don't know... I just know that I've got three more days on the island and we won flint, so I see fire and water in my future.
The natives were shaking spears at all the whites, but they saw a brother black man and waved nary a knife. I felt welcomed right away. After the ceremony, I tried to point out to the morons on the tribe that walking all grouped up and following a path in the dark was a lousy way to find our flag. They disagreed and I heard some of the young guys talking about me like I was trying to start something. After that, I just kept my mouth shut the rest of the time. Even when Chad showed us his fake foot, I didn't flinch or offer up a "you're an inspiration" like the rest of the group. Better to stay quiet and just fit in - and fitting in I am. At tribal council, when Jeff asked me how I was getting along with the group, I busted out with the chorus of "We Are Family!" I think they all loved it. Now I wonder who it was that tried to vote me off...
I'm so thrilled to be here! I really enjoyed sharing in the natives' culture, even if we did have to kneel on mats. Them girls didn't really care for it much. Those bad attitudes are starting already. They kept on it when we were out in the woods and I wanted to sit and have a break in the cold, dark wilderness. Those stuck up girls didn't even want to take the chance and get to know me. I had fallen a couple times and just wanted to rest and chat. That's what girls do! When it was time to build the shelter, those girls were just not helping out. They'd rather play and splash and let some of us older girls do all the hard work. At the immunity challenge, I knew I could help out the team, but I didn't think those girls thought I could and saved me until the end. I managed to crawl along that beam and win Immunity for our tribe! That'll show them girls.
Well, I reckoned that bein' on Survivor wud be a challenge, but I was immed'tly scairt when Jiff told us we'd have t' climb right down the boat and into the native's canoes. Hell's bells! I just right learnt to swim six weeks b'fore I come out here. Anyhows, me n' two others climbed right down into the c'noe, and the gol' durn thing tipped over n' dumped us in the warter quicker'n a 13-year-old shoplifter. When we got on th' island, I thought that all our troubles was over, but then a whole score'a the natives comes a chargin' an' hollerin' at us with big pointy spears. What were we supposed t' do? I was ready t' break out a reverse triple suplex knee drop on 'em, but I guess it was just their way a' saying howdy. But Lordy, I'm just ramblin' away! We got t' the native ceremony, where they separated th' guys from the gals, an' made the guys drink this stuff they called "ca-ber." P-tooey! It sure weren't no Pabst. Then they gave us the opp'rtun'ty t' git this magical stone, which is supposed'a give everwho gits it "good luck." I don' believe in any'a that stuff, but I wanted to git it, even though I already has my lucky Bob Barker shirt. That Brady feller did a right good job 'n scaled this greased pole faster'n...somethin' that's fast. Then it started rainin' somethin' terrible, an' it was pretty spooky, fer sure. My tribe's all right, but we done got our tails kicked by the gals in the challenge. I must say that I's proud'a my part in it, though...I started the trend'a crawlin' acrost that beam on my belly fer extra stabaliltabilta...extra balance. Too bad that Chris feller couldn't a got acrost and had t' be a big dumb idiot, 'cause now the gals have three things we don'...fahr, warter, 'n that pointy-headed immun'ty thing. I guess it just goes t' show...you cain't never underest'mate a woman. Maybe ol' Romeo can turn this tribe aroun' yet.
Yasey Tribe. Thatís a silly name, but seems ta fit some ah these prissy little girls I found maself with. Scoutís an odd one. First she wants to stop on the way to the camp so she doesnít slip, then when we get there she doesnít want to stop workiní on the shelter. Thatís ok though, me an her was about the only ones williní to work. Didnít spend our time chatterin like a bunch of monkeys. Hell, if itís just me an her workiní we may never getíer done. I tried to read the tree mail, but the folks werenít too happy with ma readiní so some prissy chick took over. We won the immunity and reward, so weíre good to go for another three days. My Motivation for this will be WWJD. Yeah What Would John Wayne Do? This week heíd watch the competition, as will I.
we'd like to thank the following writers for contributing... they are, in alphabetical order (i hope): Bill, Bravo, cali, eny, Feifer, hepcat, Ilikai, Lobeck, Lucy, Manny, MissF, Paulie, Shazzer, sher, spegs, Stargazer, Wayner and Zaius. If I left someone out, please let me know!!