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An “Insider” Look at Survivor: China Episode 6 – “I Didn't Want My Kids to See Me Weak”by Teeuwynn Woodruff -- 10/29/2007
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Sherea's Final Words
Sherea starts off by saying that Fei Long are getting played. They decided to stick with their old tribemates and that's going to be a mistake. She says that they took her out because she's a strong female and “they couldn't beat me.” They took the threat – Sherea – out of the game. Sherea says that Jean-Robert is a puppet master and he will eventually start voting out the Fei Long. She really hopes Jean-Robert gets voted out ASAP. He's fake. And he will betray them.
Sherea's proud of herself for making it 18 days out there. She tried her best and did what she had to do. They knew they couldn't beat her in the challenges. “They were the weak ones. I was the strong one.” But it's all good. She's ready to go and take a bath and have something to eat.
Yes, Sherea is strong. But she's overstating her strength here. Is she a bigger challenge threat than Frosti? Probably not. But Frosti did more to endear himself and, more importantly, make the majority of Fei Long trust him to at least some degree, and thus he is still in the game.
Sherea, The Day After
Sherea starts out by saying that the game “strips away” everything you think you need to survive on a day-to-day basis. You literally are just surviving out there. Nothing can prepare you for it. She was going to the bathroom next to ants, making fire, getting her own food. She says you have to let your guard down. She was eating things that, in real life, she wouldn't even touch! There were moments she was so hungry she thought she wouldn't make it. Sherea is the same, but she's learned more about herself. As with most survivors, she realized she's stronger than she thought. “I'm still upbeat. Still sarcastic.” She's the same, but can tolerate living with the bugs for a while now.
Sherea says that, as a teacher, she's used to people looking up to her and needing her. In Survivor, people don't really need you. “They use you to get to where they want to go.” The kids don't even understand how to use people. In this game people just use you to help themselves. Sherea says it was difficult for her. She held a lot in, keeping the teacher part of her personality from coming out too much.
She didn't feel like herself all the time – except in the challenges where it was “Sherea times ten.” She had to learn to listen and watch, instead of talking all the time. She had to step back out of herself and not be the teacher, but the student. Out here you have the same personalities as you do in the classroom, but it's adults and they are harder to deal with than kids. She worried about how she presented herself on the game because the kids in her class were watching. “I didn't want my kids to see me weak.”
Sherea thinks her friends and family will be shocked when they see her in the challenges. She's always very competitive, though. Sherea was surprised to find what a physical threat she was on Survivor. As to taking this experience back, she's already planning Survivor Day in her classroom. She's always been a fun teacher, but she's planning on being even more hands on now.
I think Sherea didn't do as good a job as she may believe keeping the teacher part of her out of her tribe. She did listen a lot, but she also went off on people on multiple occasions. She was strong, but being a physical threat isn't what got her voted out – it was not convincing the members of Fei Long (except self-proclaimed outlier Courtney) that she was more trustworthy than Frosti or Jean-Robert.
Reward Challenge: Search and Decode
This clip is the same as what we saw on the show. Unlike most challenges, this one was crucial, strategically, as Zhan Hu was unnerved by Frosti's lack of eye contact with them and they were particularly worried about Sherea's refusal to talk to Peih-Gee while they were both untying boards in one of the houses. Even if Sherea had no intention of joining back up with the Zhan Hu after the merge, she made a crucial error by not acting as if she still planned to do so. This error led directly to her ouster as it caused Zhan Hu to change their strategy and not throw the upcoming immunity challenge.
Zhan Hu Tree Mail
Peih-Gee goes up the hill and finds mail about the upcoming immunity challenge. The mail is in a covered Chinese food steamer. (I wonder if that could be useful around camp?) The scroll comes with a few pieces of food of some kind, so Peih-Gee immediately knows this will be a food challenge. Peih-Gee exclaims that the food in there was one of her favorite snacks. They might as well have put cheeseburgers in there! I still don't know exactly what was in there, though. She says that a food challenge sounds great because they're all starving. It's like a reward!
Peih-Gee brings the tree mail down to camp and tells Jaime and Erik about the upcoming challenge. Jaime seems excited too. Peih-Gee then tells them the message came with “like, my favorite food ever!” Jaime asks what it is and Peih-Gee tells her it's duck feet. Aha! Jaime gleefully shows Erik the duck foot she's holding.
The tree mail says, “...if you swallow your pride and a local dish, you just might keep your tribe together.” Jaime and Erik munch on the duck feet as Peih-Gee reads. When she finishes she says that “James will eat anything.” Jaime says she misses James (as he's been kidnapped temporarily by Fei Long). Peih-Gee then interviews that they had faith in their old Zhan Hu members, Sherea and Frosti, but they've lost faith and decided that throwing the previous challenge might not have been such a good idea after all. Peih-Gee also is starting to feel like she can trust James. So, they want to win the next challenge now “to cement having him on our side.”1 2 Next-->
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