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Wanda's Words of Wisdom – Survivor: Guatemala, Episode 13


by Wanda Shirk

Ah, Cindy, dear Cindy! We feel for you …

Cindy made a huge mistake. Cindy was a great competitor – won a couple reward challenges, including the car. She had a chance to be F-4, and she decided that a bird in the hand was worth two in the bush. To switch the metaphor, she hoped she could have her cake and eat it too, but she was wrong. Had she given cars to four people, she would certainly have been deeply appreciated and not have gone home in fifth place. She would have had enough additional prize money for placing higher in the game to have bought her new car. Unfortunately, she wanted that Pontiac Torrent too badly for herself. She hurt herself and four other people all at once.

We ought all to be able to sympathize. Zookeeping is not a lucrative job. Lots of people want to work with animals, so it’s a buyers market for the employers; they don’t have to pay much. As Cindy said, she never imagined having a new car of her own, in all of her life. It’s tough to give away something that special when you have never had anything like that, or even a dream of having it. It’s very difficult, when you are poor, to have the vision to risk what you have for the potential gain of more. Cindy would have won much more, and perhaps could have won the challenge that would have put her in the final two. But I can’t find it in my heart to criticize, only to sympathize.

Besides the fact that she won challenges, Cindy is to be respected for her attitude. It deserves mention again that she chose not to eat but to compete on the day of the “Merge Feast.” That was a true Survivor’s attitude, one I admire and would want to emulate. I also loved Cindy’s parting comments about what she would miss most – “Nature’s symphony,” as she so beautifully put it, enumerating the cicadas and many other sounds of the jungle. I’m glad Cindy will have those beautiful memories for the rest of her life, long after the car is recycled metal.

Rafe … Every week you make me love you more! Two things stood out this week. I loved the “sigh of relief” feeling when, with Judd gone, Rafe could comment that it was like the “Cool Kids” had left and “Now we can be dorkier, have more fun.” Yeah, Buddy! I gotta say that I pity those oh-too-cool-and-uptight young people who find a fun song “annoying.” The twenty-agers are often too uptight and image-conscious to have Red-Hat-Society good times; people usually have to be older to be able to loosen up and let go like Big Tom and Lydia. Rafe is an unusually great guy to be young and already be able to have that kind of fun.

I also totally agreed with Rafe – the car deal was a no-brainer. You don’t keep something for yourself if you could give it up and benefit not two, not three, but FOUR times as many other people. I do sympathize with Cindy and her poverty, but it was a sad and bad choice. On the “it is more blessed to give than to receive” scale, Rafe clearly takes first place, and Danni a less-outspoken second. Lydia stayed neutral; Steph and Cindy – and I sincerely pity their apparently deprived, car-less backgrounds – were on the selfish, I-need-it-myself end. So – I love Rafe best! Rafe’s such a sweetie, he couldn’t even vote Cindy out without adding, “I love you, though!” If he weren’t a self-described “little gay Mormon,” I’d be trying to set him up with my daughter!

So much for Thursday … Now on to Sunday …
Final Four. What can we say?

Let’s start with Rafe. He will not be voted out. He’s an acknowledged threat, but he and Danni have an alliance, so she won’t vote against him, and therefore Lydia and Steph can’t take him out if they wanted to. That means Rafe will be at least F-3. However, as I’ve said before, he cannot be F-2 unless he wins the last challenge. Because he is the most loved and admired guy there, he would win against anybody when the jury goes to vote. Like Chris Daugherty in Vanuatu, the lone guy would definitely get the respect to win. Yeah really, all four of those straight guys on the jury (BJ, Jamie, Gary, Judd) would probably vote for Rafe, except that Gary would go for Danni if she were the other person. I would love to see Rafe win the final immunity challenge, but if he doesn’t win it, he won’t be picked for F-2, and he will be F-3.

Second, Steph. She will not likely be voted out either. As Gary said, her tribemates are Star-struck. I can’t see it even crossing their minds that they could get together and vote out Steph. It would be a great move on their part, but I can’t see them thinking that way. That means that Steph is almost definitely one of the final two, because in the final three, there are only two possibilities: (1) She wins the immunity, so she’s in the final two, or (2) She doesn’t win the immunity, and whoever does win it will pick her for F-2 because the jury is solidly against her. Would Bobby Jon hand her a million bucks? Not a chance! Gary? Ditto! Jamie or Judd, after she blind-sided them both and took them out of the alliance? Bingo. Four voters solidly against her; it’s a no-brainer for Danni (or Lydia, in the improbable event that she won the final challenge!) to take Steph to F-2. Rafe could possibly pick Danni, but it could be really risky for a gay guy to take a strong, smart, and respected gal to F-2. Steph makes the most sense for anybody’s pick; she hardly even needs to try for the final immunity to get to F-2.

So if Rafe and Steph are not likely to be voted out, that leaves Danni and Lydia. Danni and Rafe are probably the tightest pair in the foursome right now. Steph has helped to vote out all her best allies – Judd, Jamie, and Cindy. With Danni and Rafe pretty much pledged to support each other, it’s likely that Lydia goes out at F-4.

Projection Synopsis: The Final two will be Steph and either Rafe or Danni, depending on who gets the immunity.

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