Did you enjoy “Survivor”? Was it everything you hoped it would be?
“It was everything I hoped it would be and more. It truly, truly was the experience of a lifetime. I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”
Do you have a lot of animosity towards Jane or NaOnka? Or was it more in the heat of the game?
“Within five minutes of the game starting, Jane ran up to me and said, ‘My husband just died, I need the money, please don’t vote me off.’ Personally, that turned me off towards Jane. I’ve had more close, personal human tragedy in my life than Jane and Chase combined, but I would never bring that into the game and leverage it on a reality TV show. That, combined with the way that she chose Wendy Jo right away and Jimmy T. right away to align with, told me this person’s not thinking smart, she’s erratic, she’s not strategic. But all that stuff was pragmatic, I was never hateful or resentful towards her. Her comment last night about my children and my fatherhood was a little over the line, even by ‘Survivor’ standards, but I don’t hate her.”
“Now, NaOnka was just such a conundrum for me. The older tribe never would’ve let that behavior fly. I wanted to keep strong people, strong players who were thinkers around. I would rather get to the final 5 with strong players and let the chips fall where they may, rather than keep horror shows like NaOnka around. The exception is Danny, who wasn’t physically that strong, but he was a good, solid, trustworthy guy.”
Do you wish you had done anything differently?
“The one thing that I would do differently is I would have tried to play with Holly. Early on, Holly showed some really bad attitudes. She looked real shaky and I didn’t consider her a strategic player. But her game warmed up and she got much better and that is an in road where I could’ve wedged myself. She has high moral standards and is a loyal person and if I’d spent time with her and walked her through some scenarios, that could’ve become a good wedge into the Jane/Chase/NaOnka alliance.”
Once you could watch the show back, did anything surprise you?
“I was taken aback by the level of hostility anger and hatred of Jane towards me and my family and all that. That was just shocking. There’s nothing that Jill or I did to her or said to her, it was her own creating, a victim of her own poor alliance building and feeling like she was on the outs. I don’t know if it’s because we happen to be educated or the socio-economic level or what. I love the way I was edited in the game, I’m very, very pleased. Playing with Jimmy Johnson was great. I would’ve loved to have played longer with him. Other than that, I’m thrilled. People found it entertaining and fun and funny without being destructive or stealing or saying horrible things about other people. I brought a really fun brand.”
Who were you rooting for once you were voted off?
“I liked the people who were really smart in the game and people who were really genuine. I think you know who I’m talking about — the strong, strategic players who were calling the shots and the people who were really genuine, who appeared to be flying under the radar but were not.”
Any final thoughts or messages to your fans?
“I’m ecstatic with the level of support everybody gave me. I’m sorry to disappoint people by leaving earlier than I would’ve liked. I’m blessed for having played the game and my partnership with Jill was the highlight of the season for me. I wish that could’ve been maintained further. Other than that, it was an incredible experience.”