So with the 19th season kicking off on Thursday, Sept. 17, I thought I would offer some tips to help readers figure out who might have the best chance of lasting the longest on “Survivor Samoa” this season.
And for people interested in someday being on the show, print out this guide and keep it in your back pocket for when you reach whatever island or far away land Jeff Probst sends you to:
* Don't be too big and strong. It will help you in the earlier days, but right around the time of the merge you will be labeled as a threat to win the individual challenges, and you will be voted off.
* Fly under the radar around camp. Don't give orders or tell others what to do. You will annoy people; never be labeled as a leader.
* Keep very busy around the camp and try and perform some task that others don't like doing, like rising early and building a fire or catching fish. That way you are deemed useful to your tribe, and not labeled as lazy.
* If you are young, try and befriend some of the older people and vice versa.
* Smile pleasantly and nod your head positively when people talk to you, even when you think what they are saying is absolutely idiotic.
* Don't trip or fall or do something blatantly stupid that causes your tribe to lose challenges. BUT if you do, don't make excuses, admit it was your fault and apologize.
* If someone else blatantly causes your tribe to lose a challenge, don't blame them. Instead put your arm around their shoulders and tell them its okay. You will then have a friend to the end.
* If you are very attractive and sexy, wear as few clothes as possible and flirt with all the members of the opposite sex. But don't hook up with one person, no matter how attractive you find him or her. In fact flirt with the least attractive people, who will feel blessed that you even noticed them.
* Never start an alliance or ask others to join you in an alliance. But whenever someone asks you to join their alliance, say that you would be very happy to, even if you wind up a member of several alliances.
* Don't be labeled a complainer, a whiner, or a malcontent. If something happens to tick you off, just keep it to yourself. When a malcontent complains to you, just nod your head in agreement.
* If you don't feel well or stub a toe, but you really want to stay in the game, don't walk around moaning and groaning. Try and keep your aches and pains to yourself.
* Don't brag about any personal wealth or possessions back home. Make it seem like you really could use the million dollar first prize, but that you are not obsessed by it.
* Talk about your family back home, brag about your wonderful parents, siblings, or children, and every once in a while (but not too often) tear up as you speak of how much you miss them.
* If you find an immunity idol, don't tell anyone, and don't be afraid to use it. I am always amazed that people tell others they found the idol and then are shocked when they are voted off.
* If you win an award challenge and have the opportunity to take someone with you to a native feast, don't always pick the same person. If you notice that someone is really hungry select that person, even if you are not close to him or her.
* Remember “Survivor” is just a game, so don't let any betrayal push you over the edge.
* If you make it to the final four, it's time to decide whether playing an “honest” game or winning the first prize is the most important thing to you. Once you make that decision, don't vacillate back and forth.
* Basically it's best to play an honest game UNTIL the end. If winning is your ultimate goal, that's probably the best time to backstab your friends. Everyone will forgive you on the reunion show anyway.
Finally, looking over these suggestions I think that this guide (except for my last point of course) might be useful to anyone who wants to survive in the game of life, not just on a reality television show