Survivor: Micronesia‘s self-proclaimed Black Widow Brigade strikes again! For the second subsequent week, a strong male contestant bought the ladies’ lies, fell prey to their scheming, and found himself on the wrong side of Jeff Probst‘s torch snuffer. This week’s victim, student teacher/gymnastics coach Jason Siska, 23, took time out from licking his reopened wounds to talk with PEOPLE about the island diet, post-elimination bonding with his former nemesis Ozzy and why he didn’t play the immunity idol despite knowing it was the real thing this time. –Carrie Bell
How does it feel knowing that the nation watched you become the second guy in a row duped by the tribe’s female alliance?I’m still recovering from seeing the episode. It was a lot more painful watching it happen on TV than it was when it really happened. The reality is that I was voted out months ago and I had gotten over it. You know, you live, you learn. But so many emotions got stirred up. I’m out visiting my brother in West Hollywood and the pain of letting him down, disappointing myself all over again, and hearing say how obvious it seemed that I was being played from the safety of their couch. It was a tough night.
You got a rare second chance to find a genuine idol after being fooled by the Ozzy-whittled fake and you still didn’t play it. Watching, it seemed like an obvious move. At the time, any instinct to use it? It crossed my mind. But in the game you’re not thinking clear. Your mind is all over the place. There are so many factors and variables that come into the game. You could play it and not have needed it and then lose the trust of the who told you they weren’t voting for you. My reasoning for what I did was that I thought the fan alliance could have gone all the way to the final four. Now, Natalie has put herself in a situation where she is trusting Pavarti, who we know is not very loyal and I think she is na ve in thinking that the favorites are going to take them to the end. At this point it doesn’t look good for any of the fans. There are still plenty of twists and back-stabbing left.
Did James or any of the other endangered players tell you the women were after you and try to turn the tables? I spoke with Amanda about it a little but nothing came of it. James did not like me so he didn’t. I think he thought I was just some hot shot white kid. I was a serious competitor and I don’t think he could handle it so he was never going to join sides with me. And Erik hasn’t thought for himself the whole game. I would have loved for that to have happened. That would have been a great upset.
Do you have a favorite experience from the show? Or something you wish was televised but wasn’t? Winning the first individual immunity challenge against Ozzy. Going in, he was one of my favorite competitors in Survivor history. For the entire game, everyone underestimated me and that was my chance to prove I got some skills too. The trip to Yap was a wonderful cultural experience I’ll never forget. I was a little upset with the episode because they focused so much on Erik’s silly antics. I teach seventh grade and I would have liked my students to witness more about the culture instead of seeing the college student party too much and puke. Although there is a good lesson in that too I guess.
I imagine life is much cushier as a jury member. Did Ozzy go from foe to friend after you were both voted out? Once the game was behind us, we hit it off. We are two typical guys with similar interests. My guitar was waiting for me and I pulled it out and jammed with Ozzy on the harmonica. Ozzie brought two surfboards as his luxury item so we surfed. We wakeboarded and went slacklining (which is like tightrope walking). I would have liked to get closer to the million, but I also got nine days to think, write music, play and eat.
You didn’t seem quite as bothered by the conditions and critters as others and your physical transformation wasn’t as extreme. I lost 13 pounds out there. I put it back on in like three days. Once you start eating again, your ankles swell up and you get a Buddha belly really quick. I was lucky that I didn’t sustain any injuries that would have forced me out of the game, but you are constantly getting cuts and scraps. In the beginning when you’re working on the shelter, the bamboo slices up your hands. It is so sharp and just moving in the morning reopens the cuts. It takes days to heal and bacteria grows fast. It is more uncomfortable than anything. I have a snake and I grew up in St. John so I was already used to crabs crawling on everything. The physical conditions were a lot easier for me to deal with than the politics. I am not the guy who can just put a smile on my face and not say anything which isn’t the greatest thing strategy-wise.
How have your students reacted since the show has been on? They have so much fun coming in on Fridays and talking about the show. They couldn’t believe I ate the rat or that I stepped down from that challenge or that they all crossed their fingers like fourth graders. When I get to school on Monday, I am sure I will be ridiculed. “Mr. Siska, how could you not play the idol?” I will probably never live that down. The irony of using the fake idol and not the real one — I love it. If I couldn’t win, at least I played a part in what is sure to become one of the most classic moments in the history of the game. Monty Brinton/CBS