Survivor Game Changers: Why?

Welcome to this week’s installment of Tater’s rambling thoughts on Survivor.

SPOILERS AHEAD

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This week on Survivor we barely see much before we are heading to a reward challenge. In this reward challenge only two people per tribe will participate so someone has a chance to be a hero for their tribe at the risk of being the one blamed for the loss. In the beginning of the challenge it looks like Ozzy and JT are set to be heroes while Tai is set to be the goat. Things change quickly in Survivor, though, and Tai is saved by the heroics(if you can call throwing bean bags at things heroic) of Culpepper. Poor Troyzan ends up the one to blame for the loss. Good thing he has hat idol. I do think it’s interesting how people who didn’t even compete are more than willing to complain that the person who competed blew it.

We got a little bit of coverage from the camps before we head to the next challenge. JT and Malcolm seem to be building an alliance with the idea of voting Sandra out. Hmm. I cant really recall much from the other tribes pre challenge. I really need to start taking notes while watching.

The challenge is a fun one to watch, but didn’t really provide a lot of dramatics.  The dramatics came before the challenge when Probst announced that two tribes would go to tribal council that night, so 1st place i the only one that matters. It was a close challenge with Andrea getting her ball in place before Varner. My daughter said it wasn’t a shock because they didn’t really show much from that tribe leading up to the challenge so she knew they wouldn’t go to tribal council.The big shock for the tribes is that the two tribes will go to tribal together and vote out one person.

Back at the camps it seems that it should be easy. One tribe has the numbers so they should be able to pick who they want to go home. JT considers voting with the other tribe to get Sandra out. Hali considers betraying her tribe as well. Tai finds an idol which complicates things further. Tribal is crazy with whispered conversations everywhere. I can’t tell which side JT is actually on, but I’m pretty sure his end game was not Malcolm being voted out. I’m also not sure which side Hali is on at this point. I do know that I think they made a mistake in voting for Malcolm with Sandra sitting there. My judgment might be clouded because Malcolm is one of my favorite players, but leaving Sandra in the game seems like a big mistake. I also think this might lead to JT not rejoining that group at the merge. They took out his one ally on the tribe, disregarded his advice to vote Sandra and left him looking like he betrayed his current tribe. If he survives to the merge I’m not sure where he goes. It must suck to be the one voted out in the weird tribal council with someone else’s tribe getting rid of you. You can’t really game plan for that and that is why I love the twists like this even if it did lead to Malcolm being gone.

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My Most Read Posts

I was looking at my stats on my blog recently and was curious about which posts have been viewed the most. There used to be a place in stats to look at all time stats, but I couldn’t find it so I went year to year and did some math.  Here are the top five posts:

Link or It Didn’t Happen This one is weird. A lot of hits from Google searches and for a while if I googled the phrase this post was a top option. Again, a lot of disappointed customers.

The Alan Meme  A lot of the hits for this one come from overseas. I think they were looking for something else. A lot of disappointed customers there.

Michael Vick This one was helped by a popular Twitter user retweeting it and it still only has 252 hits. That’s how small my audience is.

Facebook Again This one I can’t explain.Just an average run of the mill post about Facebook. I’m not sure why it was read more than the rest of my boring run of the mill posts.

No Time is a Good Time for Goodbye This is the one I wrote in the aftermath of the loss of my mom. No surprise why it was read so many times. It is still hard.

So, there you have it. My five most read blog posts since I’ve started this thing. I’ve written much better than most of these. Weird that these are the ones that people read.

 

My Favorite Movie Of Each Year I’ve Been Alive

I saw a post on Patton Oswalt’s Facebook about this. His was a joke, but I decided to do mine. I am taking time at lunch when I should be reading to compile the list, thus falling further behind in my reading goal. Also – I am just googling movies of each year. I might miss something.

1969 Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

1970 Patton

1971 Dirty Harry

1972 The Godfather

1973 Papillon

1974  Blazing Saddles

1975 One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

1976 Rocky

1977 Star Wars

1978 Grease

1979 Warriors

1980 Airplane

1981 Stripes

1982 Fast Times at Ridgemont High

1983 Outsiders

1984 Beverly Hills Cop

1985 Better Off Dead

1986 Top Gun

1987 Raising Arizona

1988 Heathers

1989 Dead Poets Society

1990 Edward Scissorhands

1991 Cape Fear

1992 My Cousin Vinny

1993 This one was tough – Tombstone edges out Groundhog Day

1994 Pulp Fiction

1995 Toy Story

1996 Scream

1997 Grosse Point Blank

1998 Waterboy

1999 Office Space

2000 Remember the Titans

2001 Shrek

2002 28 Days Later

2003 Elf

2004 Shaun of the Dead

2005 Hitch(based on the movies listed, this year in movies sucked)

2006 The Departed

2007 The Mist

2008 Gran Torino

2009 Zombieland

2010 Easy A

2011 Crazy Stupid Love

2012 Avengers

2013 The Internship

2014 Guardians of the Galaxy

2015 The Martian

2016 A lot of movies left unseen – Deadpool so far

Now, these aren’t necessarily the best movies. Just the ones I like the best. Some just based on which one I watch every time it is on TV.

 

Survivor Game Changers: The GOAT vs the goats

Caution spoilers ahead:

 

 

We started the episode with a tribe swap and a switch from two tribes to three. I enjoy tribe swaps because it shakes up the game. People in trouble get new hope and people in power positions have to start over. I do feel sorry for the third tribe that has to go to a brand new camp and start from scratch. The bad thing about this switch was that it created clear majorities and easy votes unless someone decides to make a big move. Last night was nit the night for big moves in tribal council. Caleb being voted out was obvious and lacked any suspense at all. Luckily, the other tribes gave us some entertaining TV.

At the luxury beach we start with JT sailing his new tribemates out to snorkel and fish and then leaving them there while he makes up an excuse to go back and look for an idol. It was a smart move at the start, but he stayed gone too long and they all knew what he was doing.  This puts an even bigger target on his back until the self proclaimed GOAT of Survivor met the goats of Survivor. Apparently, there are a lot of goats living around this cam ad Sandra wants to eat them. They seemed to have no trouble catching some goats, but they are a mother and baby goat. The rest of the tribe have hearts and feel bad about eating a baby or leaving a baby motherless by eating the mom. Sandra does not care. She will eat them all. There is debate and they decide to free the goats and eat the chickens now that chicken king Tai is no longer there. The chickens are the big losers of the tribe swap. It’s probably good that Tai isn’t there. Sandra might opt to eat him if he tried to protect the chickens. I think this goat drama might lead to Sandra’s demise.

Over on the other beach, it’s clear that Troyzan will be the first to go, so he goes off to look for an idol. He finds a clue and discovers that it will be hidden at the immunity challenge. I love this. It makes for good TV watching someone try to grab the idol in front of everyone. He is successful so their first tribal council could be very interesting. Not much else about this tribe is that interesting at the moment.

They tried to make the vote on the losing tribe suspenseful, but it wasn’t. It was pretty clear it would be Caleb. What I found odd was that Caleb and Hali didn’t seem to be doing much to try to stay. They didn’t show any scrambling, looking for idols or anything. Maybe there was some of that, but it was boring. It just seemed odd. I’m not that sad about Caleb going. I liked him, but not nearly as much as I do the others in the game.

Next week: The revenge of the goats,

NCAA Bracket Projections

Before I post my bracket projections I will admit that I am  Kentucky fan and in years when they have a team with a legitimate chance to win it all I never pick against them.

Upset specials:

1st round – Rhode Island over Creighton, MTSU over Minnesota, Wichita St over Dayton, UNCW over Virginia, Marquette over South Carolina, Princeton over Notre Dame

2nd round – UNCW over Florida, Iowa St over Purdue, Michigan over Louisville, MTSU over Butler, Cincinnati over UCLA

Final 8 – Iowa St, Michigan, UNC, UK, Villanova, Baylor, WVU, Arizona

Final 4 – Villanova, Arizona, Iowa State, UK

Championship – UK over Arizona

My biggest concern with this is not UK, but Iowa St. I think Kansas has a chance to lose before the Final Four. I almost had Louisville out there, but decided to go with the hot team of Michigan and their 3 point shooting instead. Once UL is gone, Oregon is the next best, but I still had a feeling that Michigan will stay hot. I made the decision to jhave Kansas go down to Iowa St and that means it is Iowa St vs Michigan, it ended with Iowa St in the Final Four. I’m sure that bracket will be my downfall.

One Is The Loneliest Number

Note – this post is more personal and introspective than usual. You should read it fast before I have second thoughts and delete it.

A friend on Facebook shared an article this weekend that said the biggest threat facing middle aged men is loneliness. While I am surprised that people think it is the biggest threat facing middle aged men, I’m not surprised that middle aged men are lonely. I am a middle aged man. I think I was born a middle aged man. Loneliness has been a constant in my life. I can be in the middle of a crowd, at a party, etc and still feel alone. I have many acquaintances and not many actual friends. I talk to people at work and then to the two people who live in my house and that is the extent of my social life. I do occasionally have a text conversation with my brother.

In person, I pretend a lot of times that I think I am someone that everyone loves, but really, deep down, I always assume I am someone that people don’t really think about at all. I’ve always felt that way. I was part of a social group in high school, but felt that I was the one who didn’t really belong. I felt the same with groups in college and I feel the same today. In every group, I feel like I am the expendable one. I have social anxiety when it comes to parties and other gatherings, so I would rather just not go. This leads to the life referenced above. I spend most of my life isolated from the world. It’s OK now while my family is there, but I am looking toward a lot of alone time when my daughter leaves for college next year.

Another problem is that I have always had more female friends than male friends. I now work in a world that is predominantly women. In the one group I socialize with on a regular basis(I am the expendable one) I am the only man. This also is a limit to developing close friendships. It is harder and more complicated when the friendship is across genders. You always have to be aware of any impressions of impropriety and there are limits on what you can discuss from your personal life.

So, no, I’m not shocked that loneliness is a problem for middle aged men. I would like to say that since I am aware of the issue that I can take steps to do something about it, but that would be a lie. I will continue to spend my time watching TV and reading books when my family is not around. It just seems easier that way.

Survivor Game Changers Thoughts

Survivor used to be the only show I insisted on watching live. My daughter would get popcorn and we would watch the show together. I would live tweet the show and read tweets to her as the show was happening. This all changed at the end of last season when I changed jobs and had to start working on Wednesday nights. Now we watch delayed when I get home from work. Since I can no longer tweet the show, I thought I would try a weekly blog post the day after. I didn’t take any notes this time because I didn’t decide this until this morning, but after this week I will try to take notes and maybe include some of the things I might have tweeted had I been watching live.

I would start this first post by saying that I realize that armchair quarterbacking the game is a lot easier than playing the game and I’m sure I would make plenty of mistakes in the heat of the moment if actually there. Now, on to the show:

I used to complain about returning contestant seasons and longed for new faces. We have had a few seasons of new faces recently so I was ready for some familiar faces, especially since many are favorites of mine. It does change the dynamic of the first episode for me as a viewer. If it is all new faces, I spend the hour trying to decide who I might like and who I might root against. This can change as the season progresses, but it is all about getting to know the players. This time I know the players so I have some favorites going in and can focus more on the game play. I have to say that the game play surprised me from the start when Jeff said there was a tool kit in the water and only one tribe went for it. I don’t get Malcolm saying that there was no point because Ozzy went for it. Are you already conceding that he is a stronger player? Shouldn’t you want to prove otherwise, especially with a major reward at stake? I think they just made a mistake and tried to cover it up with that statement.

I’m not surprised that Ciera went first last night. She’s not someone you look as being vital to winning challenges and she was the first to start openly talking strategy. I like her and would be more disappointed if there weren’t so many other favorites still in the game. I was surprised by the second boot. Your team is losing challenges and you vote off a strong challenge player and keep a weaker player who has already won twice? I know some strategy is to keep her assuming no one will award her a third win, but everyone loves her. I would not want to sit next to her in front of the jury. Now you have made your team weaker and kept a bigger threat than Tony in the game. I don’t get it. I also don’t get having Varner out in the water and Micheala on shore and then not even letting her help at the end. I know they don’t know much about her, but I see no reason to keep her on the sidelines. I don’t have much of a feel of the other tribe yet, so I have no comments on that end.

Favorite scene:

Tai and JT and the chickens. I side with JT on that one. You aren’t there to marry the chickens. You are there to win the game.

Rooting for – Malcolm, Ozzy, Michaela

Rooting against – Sandra, Cirie, Tai

The Ozzy and Cirie thing because I like Ozzy and it seems like it will be one or the other gone first.