Is Erik the Stupidest Survivor Ever?
Okay, the cat's out of the bag now. I'm a closet survivor junkie! Yes, I watch it. (Please don't hate me for this.) And when I'm out of town, I TIVO it and watch it later. I haven't done a great job of keeping up with American Idol this season but I can say, I've watched every single episode of Survivor. I even watched an episode online after somehow goofing up the recording process.
So last night, there I sat watching the episode before the season finale in disbelief! I watched as Erik Reichenbach found himself in the proverbial "Cat Bird" seat. He was stranded on a tropical island with 4 women. He had just won a reward challenge and spent the night getting the spa treatment in the company of the lovely Amanda Kimmel. He followed up this paradisaical experience with an immunity challenge victory. For those that aren't familiar with the immunity challenge - This victory gave him immunity from being voted off the island and assured him a spot in the final four contestants.
That's where the plan went unthinkably wrong and Erik somehow lost his mind! Erik was given the opportunity to surrender his immunity and give it to another contestant, Natalie Bolton, thus protecting her and leaving himself vulnerable or keeping it and moving on to the final four. In the final four, he stood a pretty good chance of winning immunity again and at least making it to the final three. But, you guessed it, Erik opted to give his immunity necklace to Natalie and was subsequently voted off! This single act of gratitude cost him at least $15,000 (the difference between 4Th and 5Th place in past years) and eliminated his chances to take home One Million dollars!
Before we judge Erik too quickly, let's take a quick look at his biography!
Erik Reichenbach, a true SURVIVOR fan, was too young to be in the first 14 seasons of Survivor. Reichenbach religiously studied the game from the comfort of his home, until he was of age to audition. Determined to play the game, Erik practiced his survival skills last summer off a small island in Florida. Reichenbach was born and raised in Pinckney, Michigan. He is currently in his senior year of studying art at Eastern Michigan University, and is a member of the college's track team. Reichenbach works at an ice cream parlor called "Screams" in Hell, Michigan, where he also designs t-shirts, hauls canoes and entertains his customers. He previously worked in landscaping, construction and as a freelance graphic designer. His hobbies include drawing, writing comic books, rock-climbing and studying philosophy/religion. He describes himself as animated, earnest and familiar. He is very proud of his running accomplishments during his senior year of high school, where he set the school's 400 yard record (49.3 seconds), and being able to run in the Nike Outdoor Nationals in Carolina. Reichenbach is a member of the Eastern Michigan Cross Country and Track team, Pinckney Pirate Track and Field Alumni and a rock climbing club. Reichenbach believes he'll go far on SURVIVOR because he is a good listener, entertaining, optimistic, athletic, a creative thinker and can easily be a leader or a follower. Reichenbach is currently single and lives in Ypsilanti, Michigan, with his cats, Furrball and Kittyfizzle (K-Fizz for short). His birth date is November 27, 1985.
Short of living in "Hell, Michigan" (Is there really such a place?) His Bio reads like that of "The All-American Boy."
But Dude! What on Earth were you thinking?
Jeff Probst commented during the show that - "He has just learned a life lesson."
I say - What a life Metaphor!
While most men are fantasizing about being trapped on a tropical island with beautiful women and the chance at winning a million bucks a bonus - Erik makes a conscious decision which forces him to leave without the women and without the money and go back to "Serving Ice Cream in Hell."
I won't call Erik the "Stupidest Survivor Ever" yet. I'll wait until the finale on Sunday and see what he has to say for himself. I hope he was bewitched, hoodwinked, bedazzled, or perhaps it was voodoo. Maybe he'll come up with some other believable/understandable reason like Love! I like the kid and hope it's not true what they're all saying:
Erik Reichenbach is the Stupidest Survivor Ever!