Here are the responses to the Jury. Read them, you five, and send me your vote for who you think should win the game. Again, it’s hard to put this on a deadline, but let’s do this thing, eh?

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Zillah Glory: If you had to eulogize Will, what would you say?

Zack Sauvageau: Will was a good man, and an honest man. He and I did not know each other that well, but he was always kind to me. A fellow Twins fan, Nick Punto hater, and WGOMer, the Dread Pirate is gone too soon.

Colin Woolston: Zack, what was the single best entry in this game, and why?

Zack Sauvageau: Well, I can only tell you what the single best entry in my opinion was. For me, that was one of the entries in the “What Was That You Asked?” challenge. The answer was “That wasn’t a very smart investment.” The submitted question was “Do you think I can get my campaign contribution back from Pawlenty?” I loved this response because I enjoyed the schadenfreude of seeing T-Paw’s campaign go down in flames, and it was so perfect and unexpected. My favorite type of entries are generally the humorous ones, and this one was right in my humor wheelhouse.

Rachel Dwyer: Toward the end of Survivor Heroes versus Villains, the remaining people were people who were played by Russell, people who allowed themselves to be played by Russell, or Russell. Using this analogy, were you played, did you allow yourself to be played, or are you a “Russell”? Be honest and give a detailed explanation.

Zack Sauvageau: I guess the closest one of these to the way I played the game was that I allowed myself to be played. My strategy for the game was similar to my strategy for getting to the front during concerts: move with the crowd. I am a bit of a loner with a pretty shy personality. At a show, it’s hard for me to assertively push my way to the front, so I follow other people who are moving in the direction I want and assist when I can. Once I had allies, I tried to not to draw too much attention to myself. I wanted to avoid putting a bullseye on my back (which, clearly, didn’t work all that well considering that I tied to be eliminated three times!), stick with the crowd, and get as far as I could.

Bret Highum: Zack- Interesting decision to vote Geoff off. Did you consider switching alliances at any point earlier in the game?

Zack Sauvageau: I really never considered switching alliances at all. I was only approached for the alliance I was in until the end. I didn’t really enter the game with the intention of forming an alliance. It just sort of happened. Once I was allied, I decided to stick with them until the end. Honestly, I had every intention of taking Geoff with me to the finals until I had a last second change of heart.

Geoff Beckstrom: Zack – you are in the final two because you lied to me about what cards you would trade in Poker and you lied when you promised to take me to the final two – how many other lies did it take to get you here and what is your argument to be the winner beyond one good challenge at the end when Will and I brought you that far?

Zack Sauvageau: It is certainly true that I was dishonest in the final challenge. I don’t like lying, and I didn’t like doing this. I literally had every intention of taking you to the finals until about the last possible second. I’ll give a quick explanation of my thought process.

After I’d agreed to send you our discussed cards (and sent them to Kelly), Will had contacted me to say he had crap cards, he sent you and I both crap, and wishing me the best of luck. He also asked if you’d requested any specific cards from me. This sent the wheels in my brain a-turning, since you did quickly ask for my two spades, and you did not tell me what your cards were. Honestly, I was a bit suspicious of your intentions since this was one of the few times you’d ever been extremely vague with me. However, I am sometimes a bit too trusting, and just disregarded all the huge signs telling me I was being stupid. I asked Will what you were asking for and sure enough, there it was: Spades. I made a decision, 16 minutes after my initial e-mail, and changed the deal of the cards.

When it came to the elimination, I decided to eliminate you because I just felt Will was a bit more trustworthy. Despite you being a great ally, you were extremely sneaky during the game. Maybe all this time I’ve been played by Will. If that’s the case, then c’est la vie. Like I said, I’m too trusting.

As far as why I think I deserve to win? That’s tough. I’m someone with extremely low self-esteem, so I’m not one at explaining why I’m awesome. Overall, though, I think I played a good, smart game. I did my best to contribute to all team challenges, and worked hard on my own challenges. Your wording sounds as if you felt I was dead weight, and I guess if that’s how I was viewed that’s disappointing to me. I’ve done my best and I’m in the finals. If I don’t win, I guess it wasn’t meant to be.

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Zillah Glory: If you had to eulogize Zack, what would you say?

Will Young: Zack and I were just getting to know each other a few months ago. We randomly had ended up as
members of Spy Tag. Little did we know we would form such a tight bond.

I don’t really remember the first time I had a conversation with Zack. I think it was after Geoff let me
know that I needed to vote for Josh. At that point, I didn’t really care. I had not really spoken with
anybody regarding my votes, but since Geoff contacted me, I figured, “Why not?”

It’s crazy to believe that without that little email from Geoff, Zack may have been eliminated long, long
ago. After that, Zack and I got to know each other as we helped off Andy. Neither of us said much, we
both let Geoff do all the talking. I just remember feeling really comfortable with him. He and I seemed
to always be thinking along the same wavelength.

Sure, there have been a few bumps along the way. He didn’t come to my support when I was seeking
another vote for Zillah; I voted for him when Colin was eliminated. Still, we always were open and up-
front. We did not talk much, but when we did it always seemed to leave us both pleased.

I will miss colluding with him as silent partners in Geoff’s quest to win Survivor. We worked well
together, and it’s a shame that our collaboration has ended. Still, I was honored to spend time plotting
with him.

Colin Woolston: What was your best strategic move in the latter stages of this game, say pre-Rachel elimination,
and why?

Will Young: I think the elimination before Rachel – when Zillah was ousted – was easily my strongest strategic
move. After seeing that you had immunity, our “tribe” had quickly decided to vote for Rachel. I
responded with an email explaining that I was voting for Zillah and needed only one of Zack, Geoff, or
Bret to join me. The email explained EXACTLY what ultimately happened. I pointed out that because
you had immunity, Rachel would use any immunity she might possess (which she did). I then pointed
out that if we did not split our vote, you and Rachel would be able to dictate who got booted despite
having just two votes.

I also explained my reasoning for choosing Zillah. There were two obvious reasons to get rid of her
at the time. First, she was not “one of us” from our other home (the WGOM). Second, and more
importantly, she had missed two submissions, so she would lose the tiebreaker to any of us. Of course, I
had previously had immunity several times, so I felt extra certain that you and Rachel would likely target
me.

My email basically concluded with the three scenarios that could develop:
1) Best case – Rachel gets eliminated with 3 votes because she doesn’t have immunity
2) Worst case – Geoff, Zack, or I gets eliminated with 2 votes because we all vote for Rachel and she has
immunity
3) Safe Option – 3 votes for Rachel still eliminates her unless she spends her immunity, 2 for Zillah then
ensures that we still keep around our 4 players to go up against you and Rachel. This option seemed like

a no-brainer, and thankfully Bret joined my vote.

Rachel Dwyer: Toward the end of Survivor Hero versus Villains, the remaining people were people who were
played by Russell, people who allowed themselves to be played by Russell, or Russell. Using this
analogy, were you played, did you allow yourself to be played, or are you a “Russell”? Be honest and
give a detailed explanation.

Will Young: Unfortunately, I will take a slight cop-out because I do not think I definitively fit into any category.

However, I fall within Russell and the group of people who were allowing him to “play” them. Again, my
overall strategy from the very first round was to protect myself. With the wrinkle of the Immunity Idols,
I was the biggest proponent amongst our “tribe” of always trying to split the vote in the safest possible
way. If I had not argued for that strategy, I would have been eliminated during the round in which you
played the Idol.

While Geoff and I had agreed to stick together to the final two, I was a little perturbed by just how
much he tried to micromanage every round. For the most part, his passion can in quite handy, so I was
perfectly willing to go with the flow and collaborate (sharing answers for the Auction, Matrix, etc.). I
also bit my tongue when he and Zack eliminated Bret even though Bret had saved me during the Zillah
elimination. As much as I wanted to protect Bret for what he did to me, I simply did not have the
numbers to make a play at the time and would have probably been in danger if I had even lobbied as a
boat-rocker.

I also voted for Zack during the Colin elimination again to protect myself. If Colin had somehow held
an Idol for that long, he clearly knew he was eliminated. With Colin’s back against the wall and Geoff
holding immunity, I voted for Zack knowing that he held the tiebreaker if Colin was not immune.
Additionally, I let Zack know about my vote and reasoning to show that I was still on the up-and-up
while also thinking for myself.

Also, if you read Geoff’s Q&A at the bottom, you will see that I did make some independent moves that
did not necessarily sit well with others. My actions may have seemed short-sighted at any particular
time, but I always had the short-sighted goal of surviving the next elimination in mind. For that reason, I
oscillated and either acted as Russell when necessary, or followed Geoff’s lead and let myself get played
from time to time.

Bret Highum: Here I thought you were going to be dead in Survivor, but instead you were just mostly dead.
How did you manage to evade the R.O.U.S.?

Will Young: The thing about R.O.U.S.es is that they are like sharks – they smell and thrive on blood. After the
first R.O.U.S. attacked me and bit me shoulder, I rolled us into the flame spurt. I was prepared for the
flame and attempted to put out the fire on my clothing. After quickly dampening the fire, I stabbed the
R.O.U.S. with my sword. The four other R.O.U.S.es in the vicinity had watched the struggle and seemed
to be pondering their next move.

I began grabbing mud off the ground and smearing it all over the wound on my shoulder. I continued
to smear mud while explaining to Princess Sheeniecup that I needed parts of her dress. She ripped
off patches of her dress and began tying it around my shoulder as a bandage over the parts that were
entirely covered with caked mud. As the closest R.O.U.S. inched my way, I pulled my sword and held it
to my side.

It charged, and I quickly flashed my sword through its torso. The R.O.U.S. staggered and dropped.
Sheeniecup and I watched as the others began to munch on its blood-soaked body. We staggered away
until we came upon the end of the Fire Swamp.

Geoff Beckstrom: Will – you made what I feel was the largest tactical mistake this game. When we needed to
expand our alliance to 5 to have a majority in a 9 man merge instead of inviting one person you
invited 2 which created a difficult issue with Zillah and nearly ruined our entire alliance had I not kept
a dialogue with Zillah and uncovered Peters attempts to double cross us. Knowing this – what is your
argument to win?

Will Young: My entire strategy throughout the game was to make whatever moves seemed necessary to survive
the current situation. At the time, we had a strong 3-person alliance (Zack, you, and me), but there
were still 11 players left in the game. Zillah had barely collaborated with us, so she was pretty much
a wild card for reliability. On the other hand, we all had a prior relationship (however tenuous) with
both Bret and Pete, so it only seemed to make sense to invite one of them in to help get a foothold from
within the Uglies.

Given that, I assumed they were in the same position as us and trying to find a safe place to join. For
that reason, I was worried that if we only invited one, he would immediately rat us out to the other. It
seemed safer to just invite them both in and use them for as long as they would come in handy. I guess
it may have seemed short-sighted, but having been a member of NPF I was just making moves to make
it a few more rounds without having an ultimate end-game in sight. I hoped that everything would
eventually fall into place, and, sure enough thanks to your interrogation of Zillah – we got the benefit of
ditching Pete quickly while still having Bret around to ensure us a majority after the merge.

—–

Send votes to me, dudes and dudettes, and make it clear that you’re voting for a winner, not voting someone out. Write the name of the person who should win, and if you feel like it, tell me why. I’d like to wait for every vote, but if I get a majority and end up waiting, I’ll post.