SURVIVOR INSIDER April 18, 2003

Published on: April 18, 2003

This is why I say they're playing the game like they live their lives every day and do NOT have their eyes on the prize.

For once, surprisingly, I agree with Vecepia about Daniel.

Daniel said early on he wanted to be the first Asian-American to win the money and that's OK to carry that pride inside of you, but it's not about race or gender.

If you go out there and focus on your situation whether it's race, gender or disability instead of strategy and who your competition is you won't win.

You can't separate yourself from the group -- mentally or physically -- because your actions reflect your thoughts.

Daniel thought of himself as the lone wolf, he was stubborn, and didn't know how to interact well with the rest of the tribe. He was his own worst enemy.

The reason the first bunch of people get voted off is usually because of personality problems. For example, the only reason Christy is still on the show is because other people have been more irritating and they needed to go first. But I think they'll be getting rid of Christy after Butch.

To Vecepia's credit, being a woman or an African-American was never an issue with her -- she was there to win. She didn't let anything get in her way, and she didn't stupidly make trouble for herself or others.

The last thing you want to do is go to Tribal Council -- or as I like to call it, the public hanging -- when you've had some bad mishaps with the tribe. It can be very stressful not knowing if you're going home or not. And it's a grueling process. On TV, it looks like it takes about 10 minutes but in reality it's really three to four hours! You typically hike for a while just for the cameras -- and then the production crew transports you the rest of the way to the set. You have to get your microphones on and then they may need a couple of takes of the tribe walking into the set. All of this is done in complete silence from the tribe -- absolutely no talking. Then come all the questions. Jeff Probst wants to get the best reactions for the show, so he pushes and pushes just to get a rise out of contestants. Even though it's like going to a funeral, I loved Tribal Council because I always knew who was going home -- and that person was never me.

It's easy to spout off out of frustration, but it can cost you in the long run. You should focus on taking in information instead of talking and telling people what you think -- I guarantee it WILL be used against you. That's why it would be a good thing to just go fishing for most of the day because you'd be productive in the eyes of the tribe while getting much-needed nutrition for your brain. And at the same time you'd be out of the way of any crap going on back at camp.

If I could give advice to the remaining group I would tell them it's just as much of a mind game as it is physical, so don't get distracted.

When I was there I manipulated everyone's mind and won. And boy did I have fun doing it!