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Survivor: Exile Island - Who Should Be Exiled to Romper Room?by Ken Kellam III -- 04/25/2006
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Before we get started, I want to thank all of you who wrote to point out (ever so politely, in most cases) that Courtney actually said, “How does any normal American BEAT a Navy fight pilot dude?” in reference to Terry, not “BE,” as I thought I heard her say. If there’s anything I’ve learned from years of writing this column, it’s that the quickest way to generate e-mail from readers is to get your facts wrong, or express an unpopular opinion.
With that in mind, there’s no telling how much I’ll get by combining the two, so here goes: Shane is the most likable, easy-going person to ever play the game, and boy did he have it pegged when said Casaya would be the first tribe ever to stick together until the end. Is he a student of the game’s history or what?
Now, on with our regularly-scheduled article. Last week, I commented on how hard it was to find inspiration to write, leading to a one-week sabbatical. One reader, after respectfully pointing out the be/beat gaffe, said, “I hope you get re-enthused because I really like reading your articles.”
Well, if inspiration were sand, Shane just provided me enough to bury 100 immunity idols, which lead us to this week’s title: Shane needs to be exiled to Romper Room for a long, long time, so maybe he can find his maturity.
Last week, I mentioned how I’d found it harder to dislike Shane after seeing him cry over the video of his son; that same crying scene caused my colleague Heathyr to roll her eyes. After the latest episode, I think Heathyr was on to something.
I was also going to say that now I know why Shane and his son get along so well: Their maturity levels are similar. However, that would be terribly insulting to his son Boston. Shane mentioned that he and his son grew up together, but while that may be true in Boston’s case, the jury is still out on Shane.
It started during the reward challenge when he whined that Courtney was the only one in the game to chop two of his ropes. Actually, she was, at that point, the only one to chop any of his ropes period, so he probably should’ve counted his blessings. Instead, he made a grade-school threat towards her, growling that her life would change; he then clarified that he meant her enjoyment around camp. What was he going to do, beat her up and take her lunch money?
Other people got ropes chopped, but none handled it as immaturely as Shane. Courtney then actually gave it a bit of perspective, saying, “Gimme a break, dude, we’re playing a game,” to which Shane replied by spitting. Sheesh, how’s this guy going to act when (hopefully not if) he gets voted out? He has my vote for most likely to repeat Judd’s “I hope you get bit by a freakin’ alligator” line from Guatemala..
Not long after, Shane started exerting peer pressure on Cirie not to chop his last rope, and when she did anyway, he looked at her and said, “Why?” as if she’d just stolen his tricycle. I’ll tell you why, Shane: ‘Cause it’s a game, and her options were limited. At that point, he muttered how Cirie played under the radar, and when encouraged by Danielle to stop, he claimed it was all good and he was just having an emotional reaction. But it was more like a pity party, like the kid who sulks because he can’t be quarterback during the sandlot football game.
When Cirie explained why she cut his rope and not that of Aras, he whimpered, “That tells me a lot,” and I half expected him to say, “You like riding bikes with Aras better than you do with me.” It’s a wonder he didn’t start sucking his thumb.
But Shane wasn’t finished sulking, not by a long shot. It was time for Cirie to choose two people to enjoy the reward with, and Shane resorted to literally begging on his hands and knees. When his pleas went in vain, he kicked at the dirt like he’d just been told he’d have to wait to get a new bicycle, and told Cirie she’d made the wrong call. Huh? Based on Shane’s behavior, I’d say she more than made the right one. That is, unless Shane was planning to affect her enjoyment around camp, too.
She told him she was sorry, and he said she was sorry. Well, Shane, nanny nanny boo boo, stick your head in doo-doo. At this point, I’m wondering why Shane’s luxury item wasn’t a rattle.
But not only was Shane lacking in maturity, he didn’t seem to have a lot of self-awareness either. It’s like that episode of Cheers where Norm and Cliff were discussing the plight of animals in the zoo, sitting around, eating, having no life at all, and what made it so funny was their obliviousness to the fact that they were doing the exact same thing.
Shane had a couple of those moments as well. The first was back at camp when Courtney was bemoaning how she was named “most annoying,” among other negatives. Shane said to her, “You’re personalizing a lot of this,” and, “You take things too personal.” Yep, kind of like you did, Shane, when your ropes got chopped, as well as your hopes of partaking in the reward.
Shane, in fact, sometimes acts as though he’s the lead character in a sitcom and the rest are just his supporting players. But newsflash for Shane: You’re no Sam Malone, and even Cheers once filmed an entire episode without Ted Danson, so GET OVER YOURSELF! Maybe CBS should line up Superglue as a sponsor so they could have the weekly “Get a Grip” award. Any doubt Shane would win hands down?
But Shane wasn’t finished moping, reiterating that for Cirie not to pick him was just wrong. Huh? Earth to Shane: It’s not a sin for someone not to give you your way. Wrong would be if Cirie stole from you or made offensive comments about your son. But she had to pick somebody, and it just wasn’t you this time. Deal with it. It’s okay to be angry, and it’s okay to be disappointed, but a decision isn’t wrong just because it doesn’t favor you. I’d hate to see how you’d act in Pop Warner football if a call didn’t go your way.
Remember last week when Cirie told Shane his “chafing” was the adult equivalent of diaper rash? How appropriate, given his behavior. Maybe she should’ve offered to burp him.
Then there’s Shane’s comment that he’d kill Courtney. He claimed he was cracking a joke, but when you say something like that in that tone of voice, it at least shows you’ve got a bit of psycho in you. After she called him obnoxious, he told her not to be so sensitive. HUH? Like he wasn’t sensitive when Courtney and Cirie chopped his ropes and Aras broke his wagon? Sorry, that last one just slipped in there.
Next, Shane told the cameras Courtney’s a lunatic, which is like Don King claiming someone has a bad haircut. Once Aras and Cirie returned from the reward, Shane confirmed his own lunacy by swearing to them on his son’s name. Uh, Shane, didn’t you do that with Courtney and Danielle as well, and then ask for your son’s name back? It’s a bit surprising Shane didn’t have them repeat, “Cross my heart, hope to die, stick a needle in my eye.”
Well, we’ve seen that Shane is rather insecure, panicky, infantile, and lacking in self-awareness. By the way, Shane, thanks for giving me plenty to write about.
Ken can be reached with any comments, criticisms, or money orders at YourNextOfKen@aol.com .
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