Monday, December 20, 2010

This Post Will Make No Sense

Unless you watch Survivor.

Did you watch the finale last night? We all did in this house. We sat there for 2 hours, the twins bouncing up and down on the floor hoping Fabio would win; me wondering if Holly would've won if she'd gotten immunity (my eventual decision was yes, and that excluding her from the final was probably the first overtly strategic move, besides winning immunity, Fabio ever made). We were glad Fabio won, even though he was a bit of a wingnut when it was all over. It reminded me of when the Hippies won The Amazing Race. It's nice to see happy nutjobs pleasant people do well in these sorts of situations.

But the best part of the finale is the final live bit, when Jeff the Host shines the Light of Public Disapproval on some of the more, err, complicated aspects of the contestant's behaviour. It's one of the curious qualities of this show: it attracts people who forget that the normal rules of society STILL apply. For the first couple of shows it was funny, because the contestants weren't terribly aware that their every comment or move would be broadcast for everyone to tut-tut over or laugh heartily at. Now though, it seems just plain odd that people would say dumb stuff to the cameras, stuff that will dog them for posterity, when they KNOW it might dog them for posterity. My Prim Inner Victorian cringes a bit, truth be told. And this is where this post is going: I'm going to do a Miss Manners on some of the Survivor contestants. Some of the contestants who really should have known better.

First, Dan, aka I Am Really Rich And Way Cooler Than You.

Holly, in a moment of HOW DID I GET HERE I HATE IT HERE-itis, stole Dan's expensive shoes (mostly because all he did was drone on about how expensive they were and how many pairs he had at home, where he was really rich), filled them full of sand and sunk them in the water. At the finale, Dan screamed "You're a thief and you should have your hands cut off!" at her. At the reunion show Holly gave Dan a pair of fancy cowboy boots, to replace the shoes she had torpedoed. Dan took them with great magnanimity and smiled as though he had never expressed a wish to see Holly's hands cut off. Here's what I would have said to him if I were an Unbridled Sheila:

Excuse me, Dan, but it was a TV show. A TV show. You're competing for a cash prize with a bunch of other people. She stole your shoes and hid them. Weird move, I agree, but you think her hands should be cut off for that? Methinks you're in the wrong game show - the one you want is The Running Man. And I hope Dynamo catches you, you irritating man. Even my kids know this Cardinal Rule of the Playdate: If you don't want to lose something leave it at home!

Next, Naonka, aka Official Nutjob.

Jeff went into the audience this time round, to talk to Assorted Family & Friends. He did what we all wanted him to do and talked to Naonka's mum. Naonka's mum was, we all noticed, sweating the proverbial bullets about this. She knew her daughter had Crossed The Line, not once, not twice, but pretty much all the time. But she also loves her daughter. So when Jeff asked her if "the apple fell far from the tree," giving her the opportunity to hang herself on her own rope, Naonka's mum had the decency to look sheepish but coy: "No," she replied, "but I'm the nice girl." Naonka looked momentarily stunned, because up till that point she'd been trumpeting the fact that she was the Smartest Survivor Of Them All. And there was her mother telling everyone that yes, her daughter WAS a bit of a loose cannon. I think we all sighed with relief that someone in Naonka's family might be giving her a [YouReallyAreA]Turkey sandwich for Christmas. But here's what the Unbridled Sheila wanted to say to Naonka:

Naonka, dahling, you're right, it was a game show. A game show where people compete for a cash prize. I get that. What I don't get is how your behaviour (targeting a woman with a prosthetic leg, talking trash about everyone, stealing Fabio's socks then giving him hell for asking for them back, stealing the cache of food and eating some of it yourself then blaming the girl who caught you doing it, doing that turkey neck waggle thing, convincing yourself that you are smart and savvy when really you're just an embarrassingly mean-spirited girl who needs to learn some manners) hasn't gotten you into more trouble in the Outside World, where you are apparently a teacher of SMALL CHILDREN (words fail me here).
Even Russell The Truly Nasty Man knew better than to say some of the stuff you said. The two of you grossly overgeneralized the Rules of the Game, so for your elucidation I am going to spell them out for you herewith:
1) it is a GAME not a free for all
2) you do NOT have carte blanche in terms of social mores
3) there is a camera shadowing your every move
4) every stupid thing you say or do WILL be broadcast to millions

Naonka, that chip on your shoulder is going to tip you over if you aren't careful. It's the size of the Space Station. I won't ask you if you know the meaning of the word humility because I sense that this an unknown direction on your moral compass. Fortunately Jeff wondered the same things I did - we all did - and called you on it. I sentence you to a stint on Running Man too, but I'm hoping Subzero finds you first.

Then Jeff awarded the Most Likeable Survivor cash prize to Jane. I think her daughter was more thrilled. But he never asked her why she was so hostile to Chase and Sash.

Jane, the Unbridled Sheila would have asked, why were you so mean to Sash and Chase? It's a game. And it's not like you don't know the rules: beat everyone out to final three then beg for mercy from everyone you've flattened along the way. What did you think Chase was going to do - take you to the end with Holly, then watch everyone vote for you and Holly? Of course he wasn't. I agree that Chase wasn't the sharpest knife in the block, but even he knew that you had to go at some point, if he hoped to win. Oh, and please, don't do that head-down-look-up-with-all-that-blue-eyeshadow-on thing you did at the final vote: that's not a good look for an older woman who has been starved a food for a while. You reminded me of the Ghost of Christmas Past.

So there you have it. A few things the Unbridled Sheila would have asked if she'd had the chance. As it was it was probably a good thing she didn't get the chance, because I sense that the Official Nutjob might have tried to beat her up.


Samantha said...

I *heart* Unbridled Sheila!

I haven't watched Survivor in years, but I can see this applying to the ones I have watched.

sheila said...

Aww, shucks, thanks. Richard fears the Unbridled Sheila, sadly. She's a bit TOO unbridled for him.