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Survivor: Guatemala – Why Cindy Lostby David Bloomberg -- 12/09/2005
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Cindy was in a questionable position as the contestants headed into the thirteenth episode. She was part of the majority alliance, but had not been told when the other parts of the majority alliance turned on Judd. Was this an indication of things to come or were they just keeping quiet? Did her loss have much to do with that bit of secrecy, or were there other, bigger reasons? Why did Cindy lose?
The answers to such questions, of course, can be found within the pages of What Guatemala Survivors Should Have Learned. So let’s take a look back to see what we can find out before we get to the final four.
First and foremost is the rule that says to scheme and plot. Cindy did some of this, but I don’t think viewers ever saw her as a real “player” in this game. Cindy found herself in a difficult position after the tribal mix-up, when Judd quickly switched sides, leaving her and Margaret out in the cold. But Cindy held on and eventually became an integral part of the majority alliance.
How integral a part probably depended on who was asked. But when the others decided to get rid of Judd, they didn’t inform her, probably fearing she would tell him about the planned coup. So obviously, she was close to Judd by then.
Whatever got her to that point, Cindy recognized that she was in a difficult position. She likely took Stephenie with her on the reward BBQ in order to try to cement a relationship with her and swing votes in her favor. It almost worked. Almost.
Did the failure of that plan have anything to do with the second rule, which advises against scheming and plotting too much? Nope. Cindy did what she needed to do – or at least tried to do what she needed to do. She didn’t do it too much or too early.
However, she did face a problem when it came to the third rule, not letting emotions control her. Cindy faced a unique and difficult situation when it came to the reward challenge win. Should she keep her car or give cars to the other four players? I have to agree with Rafe on this one – she should have given them away.
In case you’re wondering how this fits into a discussion of emotions, I believe Cindy was so swept up in the emotion of winning that she failed to take all possibilities into account. Yes, she did a pretty logical assessment at the time, all things considered, but there were other issues not addressed.
The decision of the car was really a cost/benefit analysis. The cost was giving up the car. What was the benefit? Possibly moving further in the game, maybe all the way to a million dollars. That’s a hell of a benefit! Sure, there was no guarantee that it would help her, but not giving it to them could have (and, I believe, did) hurt her. And if she had made it to the final three, she would have had three people on the jury to whom she had oh-so-selflessly given a new car.
All in all, I think a more reasoned, objective analysis of the situation would have brought Cindy to the conclusion that she had to let go of the car. Instead, she kept it and then, to add insult to injury, talked and talked and talked about it in front of the very people to whom she had not given a car!
The fourth rule says people should pretend to be nice on Survivor. Cindy had no problem there, so let’s move on.
Fifth is to not be too much of a threat. Compared to, say, Rafe, Cindy was not too much of a threat to win challenges. However, she did win the car. More importantly, she was an even bigger threat to win it all at the end if she faced off against the likes of Rafe or Stephenie. Both of the latter two had double-crossed people who sat on the jury. Not so with Cindy. Therefore, she had a better chance of picking up votes at the end. Threats don’t get much bigger than that.
How did Cindy do in terms of the sixth rule, being flexible? Frankly, not terribly well. While many of the other players were constantly thinking about their best options, Cindy seemed all too content to remain a part of the majority alliance and just let it take her where she needed to be. She should have recognized that a six-member alliance has about three or four people too many. Then she could have been working different angles rather than being the one worked. Cindy did try to do some maneuvering at the end, but it was too little, too late.
The seventh rule, which says not to be lazy, had no bearing here. So that brings us to the question of whether Cindy’s tribemates made the right decision.
Rafe obviously did, as did Danni. That leaves Stephenie and Lydia. Lydia also probably made the correct choice, as she is lucky to still be around and should agree to do whatever anybody tells her to do! As far as Stephenie, I think she picked the right person to vote out as well. Rafe was likely right in saying neither of them could beat Cindy in the end because they had double-crossed several people. Yes, they could have used the car against her, but it would have had no impact on the four people already on the jury right now, and probably would have had little-to-no impact on the others as well.
Cindy was in a bad position but had an opportunity to make it better through flat-out bribery. She chose not to take that route, which might have been an emotional decision rather than a logical one. What’s worse is that she put herself in a position where she drew attention to herself and was unable to direct that attention elsewhere. Because she had been fairly well-liked and had not stabbed people in the back, she was a threat to beat some of the double-crossers if they made it to the final two together. When we combine Cindy’s car decision and her threat to win the million on top of the car she already got, we have pretty well summarized why Cindy lost.
If you haven’t already, be sure to check out our Survivor: Guatemala Episode 13 recap:
David Bloomberg is the Editor of RealityNewsOnline and can be reached at RNO@pobox.com.
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