‘Survivor’ Castaway Interview: Sarita White


Sarita White’s “Survivor” claim to fame is pretty impressive. After three seasons, she was the first person to ever eliminate “Survivor” Hall of Famer Russell Hantz.

Granted, after that her tribe fell into a tailspin and eventually voted her out. But, we can’t all be winners.

I spoke with Sarita the morning after her short stay on Redemption Island to find out why she targeted Russell, why David turned on her, and if the Brady Bunch alliance was as harmonious as they seemed.

Gordon Holmes: I feel like we haven’t been given a good look at the insides of the Zapatera Six alliance. Care to crack it open and let us know what was going on?
Sarita White:
They definitely kept all of that under wraps. We were really all close. It was as seen. The only divisive things were Russell and the two chicks. Just from the beginning, it was oil and water. It was three people who wanted to be famous on a reality show and a group of people who were healthy in mind, body, and soul and were looking to have this great adventure.
Gordon: Who did you connect with?
Sarita: I really connected with Ralph. He was a really good partner in crime there. I was actually surprised; I thought he had voted for me. It was so sweet, that was my favorite part of last night was that he hadn’t voted for me. I thought that Mike hadn’t voted for me or maybe Julie because I was close to all of them. But yes, Ralph to the bitter end. Thank you. Thank you, friend.
Gordon: When you said Russell, Stephanie, and Krista were trying to be famous, what kinds of things were you talking about?
Sarita: Russell’s just given up his entire core life to be a reality star. I’ve never encountered anything like it. There was a very surreal play within a play going on. Because it’s just all he talked about. He was obsessed with it. He talked about respect for the game, but in the end I don’t think he had any respect for the game, it was just really self-serving.

Gordon: Was there more to your feud with David than who got to do the challenge puzzles?
David and I were actually really close. Nobody else wanted to get Russell off because of his valuable experience. I wanted to get Russell off because I knew that he was going to be gunning for me because I was not impressed with him at all. I wouldn’t even entertain a conversation with him and was as thick as thieves with everybody else. So, David was the only one who got what I was talking about. We bonded early on.  I liked David. He’s definitely annoying and he comes off horribly on TV and he is that obnoxious. But he’s so smart and funny. So, it was sad to have to sever that when I did. And I was straight with him. I said, “I don’t trust you anymore, you’re too volatile.” And there were things that he did that were super reactionary. And there were times where I was like this (expletive deleted) is crazy. But he’s wily and clever. And on a personal level I appreciate him. He does have good qualities and he can make me cry laughing.

Gordon:  Let’s do some word association. We’ll start with Ralph.
Dogged, loyal. He is like the Lion in “The Wizard of Oz.” He’s a force of nature and he’s relentlessly himself.
Gordon: Julie?
Sarita: Julie is another bad-ass woman warrior. She’s awesome.
Gordon: Russell?
Sarita: Russell is a young soul, ego-driven, and petty.
Gordon: Steve?
Sarita: Steve is simple and tries his best with what he has.
Gordon: Mike?
Sarita: He is a stunner. He’s a war veteran, so he’s an all-around lumberjack man with a brain.
Gordon: David?
Sarita: Typical defense attorney for literally the worst criminals that America has ever seen.
Gordon: Stephanie?
Sarita: Immature, social climber, and bitter. A mean girl.

Gordon: Did everything turn out OK with your teeth?
I never even told the show this; I ended up having an emergency root canal because it was so badly infected. And it still hurts. There’s something still wrong with it.
Gordon: Did you learn a lesson about sticking jungle sticks into your mouth?
Sarita: No, because it really wasn’t from me gouging, I’m sure that didn’t help. But what really didn’t help was me not brushing my teeth for so long.

Any questions? Drop me a line on Twitter: @gordonholmes

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