By John Powell – GlobalTV.com
What’s next for Survivor: Game Changers winner Sarah Lacina? The 32-year-old police officer is returning to her beat next week.
“I am literally going back to work on Tuesday. I love my job and I love my co-workers. A million dollars is great but I don’t think it is quite enough to retire on,” she told Global TV.
Sarah won the final jury vote by seven votes beating finalists Brad and Troyzan. Troyzan didn’t get a single vote while Brad received three (Sierra, Debbie and Ozzy).
“You cannot look out for other people otherwise you are not going to win because you are going to run into that person like me or Tony (Vlachos) who is looking out for themselves and if you are not willing to cut their throats, we will cut yours because we are out there for our families.”
Although the jury did criticize her for playing a very cutthroat game, Sarah has no regrets.
“So, the first time didn’t work out well. I was playing the game as I would act in real life. For example, you saw me refuse to write Trish’s (Hegarty) name down because I was friends with Trish. That wasn’t a good way to play,” said Sarah of her previous stint on Survivor: Cagayan.
With two months to prepare for Survivor: Game Changers, Sarah knew she had to approach the game differently if she was to have any chance at winning.
“You really have to decide for yourself: Survivor is not real life. You don’t have to do things like you would in real life. You have to be willing to write down anyone’s name no matter how close to them you are. Knowing that, I was really able to prepare myself to play that way. When people were hurt that I voted them out they felt like I was there best friend and that wasn’t fake, it was real. I was just willing to be cutthroat,” she said of her aggressive gameplay this season.
Sarah insists the bonds and relationships she made in Fiji were real, she was just willing to set them aside to move ahead in the game.
“Playing for your real life and your family back home, you have to look out for Number One out there. You cannot look out for other people otherwise you are not going to win because you are going to run into that person like me or Tony (Vlachos) who is looking out for themselves and if you are not willing to cut their throats, we will cut yours because we are out there for our families. Tony and I are great friends but we both would have cut each other if we had to,” Sarah explained as she gave insight into the rest of her game winning strategy.
John Powell: That is the thing about Survivor. You have to make bonds with people but you might have to also break those bonds. How do you reconcile that afterwards?
Sarah Lacina: “You have to look at the jury and explain to them that they would have done the same thing to you and this is a game. Luckily, my jury wasn’t full of new players. They have been around the block before so they get it and they are more accepting. Even though their feelings are hurt, they understand you have to change your game. There are too many times where you see returning players continue to play the exact same game over and over. If it didn’t work the first time, it is probably not going to work the second, third, fourth or fifth time.”
John Powell: Were you surprised at the indignation shown by some of the jury members considering they were returning players?
Sarah Lacina: “I think they were even surprised at themselves. I have heard from some of the other players that they cannot believe they were so emotional this season. Even though they are returning players, every time you get voted out you understand your chances of being asked back to try to win dwindle so that is where the emotion comes from. For me, I knew that this was probably my last chance. Going in, I look at this as my redemption and I didn’t want to blow it. I don’t think it is necessarily that they are mad at me but they are mad at themselves. A lot of people direct their anger somewhere else because they don’t want to admit that they are the ones who screwed up.”
John Powell: Tell me a little bit about obtaining the Legacy Advantage because it did eventually save your game.
Sarah Lacina: “That move was huge. Sierra told me she would give me that but how do I vote her out and get her to still give it to me? I had to fool her. I had to dupe her or there was no way she would have given it to me. You see in that episode when she tells me about it that it made me want to keep Sierra because people are starting to lose their trust in me. I needed that Advantage though to protect myself. That is the only sure thing because Sierra might have voted with me for one vote and then she could have turned on me but the Legacy Advantage is not going to turn on me. If I hadn’t acted so shocked and upset at Tribal Council, I doubt she would have given the Legacy Advantage to me. As far as where did I go wrong, I really don’t feel that I did. I had to do everything that I did in order to get her to give that to me.”
John Powell: In your real life as a police officer you have to scope out situations, make quick decisions and decide who is telling the truth and who isn’t. Those skills seem perfectly suited to the Survivor game.
Sarah Lacina: “Being a cop is exactly what Survivor is. It is interviewing people to get the truth. You need to figure out who is doing what in order to solve crimes. On the island, you are trying to figure out who is telling the truth constantly, playing attention to details, being able to adapt to situations. I get paid to do that every day so it was great for them (the producers) to pay me to play Survivor. That is pretty cool.”
John Powell: We saw a number of former winners return this year would you ever consider playing again?
Sarah Lacina: “I have been asked that a lot today and obviously today is not the day to make that decision. Survivor has been on my mind since I left Cagayan and I have been wondering for the last ten months whether I won this season or not, so I really need to take a minute and get back to my real life before I can make a decision like that.”
Next Season on Survivor: Heroes vs. Healers vs. Hustlers…