Survivor‘s Kelly Reacts to Surprise Elimination, Fire Ants
How the mighty have fallen! Kelly Sharbaugh, a 25-year-old who splits her time between L.A. and San Diego, was the second member of the powerhouse Galu tribe to find herself on the Survivor: Samoa chopping block. The hairstylist spoke with PEOPLE.com about her surprise elimination, Erik regret, fire ants and craving Mexican food something fierce. – Carrie Bell
When your name showed up, you looked flabbergasted, shocked, dumbfounded.All of the above. I had no idea that Russell had the idol. When host Jeff Probst said my name, I was like. “What just happened? What did I do?” I was so emotional because I was so unprepared. I didn’t even wear my favorite boots to tribal because the thought that I could go never crossed my mind.
Did you ever get them back?No, fire ants nested in them so I left them in Samoa and after the tsunami I’m pretty sure they got washed away.
Why do you think you were targeted when Laura wasn’t an option?I really didn’t get that move. Even if Russell had the idol, I thought I would be the last person they would target. To me, picking off one of the strong guys made more sense, especially because their alliance is tighter, but they were very set on breaking up the women for some reason. I’m physically more of a threat than Monica, but Monica was much closer to Laura than I was. If the goal is to hurt Laura, the better strategy would have been to take out her better ally.
There was a pre-tribal conversation among Galu members pondering what to do if Russell pulled off the impossible and found a second idol without a clue.
I wasn’t there for that conversation. I wish I had been. Maybe I would have thought about it a little more. He had just played the idol the night before so it felt like there was no way he could have found another one already. I wish we could have split the vote but one of our is Shambo and she’s a wild card. We could have told her our plan and she probably would have told Russell.
Because you guys, pardon my frankness, stupidly voted off a Galu person last week you actually didn’t have the numbers needed for a surefire split vote.We regretted voting for Erik immediately. The decision was made so quickly and it turns out it wasn’t even his plan to kick Monica out. It was John’s, and John clearly let him take the fall for it. John ruined everything in a way. He called the original plan to take out Foa Foa one-by-one “junior varsity Survivor,” and it ended up more junior varsity to send home one of our own. We shot ourselves in the foot and deserve the fallout. Now it’s a tie game and getting interesting watching the underdogs rise up. They have an advantage strategy-wise.
Russell seems to be a big part of that advantage.In the game, I thought, “Who is this creepy little man stirring up trouble and making stupid moves?” I didn’t see the wisdom of his strategy. But he’s playing an amazing game, the best so far, and no one saw it coming. He’s running his tribe. I never understood why the others never tried to get rid of him. But we’re , not just little chess pieces he moves around. We have the vote in the end and he’s not making the emotional connections that you need to win. He treats terribly and he talks about them. I question his integrity as a human being. He said something about how God made him for the game. I’m not a religious person, but it’s still offensive that the most evil player ever thinks he’s doing God’s work.
How were you affected physically?I ate whatever I wanted before, knowing that I’d lose weight out there. I went on every single reward challenge so I wouldn’t eat for three days but then on the third day I feasted. I didn’t want to lose too much weight and appear weak like Monica. I never got hurt. It was hard to readjust to eating regularly and sleeping in a bed in the real world. When I heard rain for a month or two after, I would instinctively pull the covers over me and wait to get wet. It’s the weirdest feeling to hear rain and stay dry. I was still craving pizza and I got that at Ponderosa. I was seriously craving hot sauce and Mexican food, so when I got back to Southern California I ate Mexican food for eight days straight. We also went to McDonald’s Samoa and that was comforting and strangely my body processed that better than anything else.
Mentally?I got to spend time with Erik and the others as they came to Ponderosa and I learned a lot from them. We did a lot of soul searching together and my perspective on everything changed. Jeff says you understand need versus want a lot more after Survivor and he’s absolutely correct. Samoa holds a special place in my heart and I was devastated when I heard about the tsunami. We met a lot of Samoans and learned about their culture and explored the island and so many lost their homes and businesses.
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