SURVIVOR Super Fan

A blog to document my passion and ongoing efforts to be cast on Survivor


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Open casting call video

I thought I would post a video from my recent open casting call.  60 seconds is what is allowed so there is no time to waste in making your pitch!  I would love feedback from my fellow Survivor fanatics- positive & negative.  I think I was able to share who I am and what I bring to the game that will allow me to compete.

 

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Who the hell am I??? – Casting call day at the Big E!

What a great day!  I attended my 7th open casting call in my quest to get on Survivor.  Over the past five years, the lines are a little shorter (I was #96), but the idea is the same.  Hopeful people of all ages, shape and sizes trying to catch the attention of the good casting folks (shameless suck up acknowledged).  A few are veterans who have done this before.  Many are open casting call virgins, trying for the first time to get on the show.  Most make mistakes in their approach and do not have a good prepared approach.  Many botch their prepared statements.  A few put forth a good effort.  I had a blast meeting the CBS people running the event and many of the folk in line.  It is a shame if you attend a casting call and do not take the time to embrace the other Survivor geeks who are there.  Treat it as you would when you hit the beach the first day.  Approach people, early and often.  Don’t look for someone cute in line and fixate.  Mix it up and say hello to the kids, the old people, the guys, the girls, the quiet and the loud (i fall into three of those categories!).

My girlfriend joined me and got to not only see the experience for the first time, but she took a shot at it as well!  20150926_114107Funny story – She doesn’t care for Survivor (that part is not funny), but loves Amazing Race.  She had intended to do her 1 minute speech about her life experiences and what she brings to the game, and at the end say something like “so put me on Amazing Race and I will do great!”.  Unfortunately, she forgot that last portion…so guess she will only be considered for Survivor!

 

 

 

For my part, I hit things as well as I had hoped.  I delivered a well prepared speech.  I did not fumble any words or forget to include any details.  I felt comfortable as my speech pretty much writes itself.  It is very true to who I am.  Title of the speech was “Who the hell is Rob Folz???”  I detailed clearly how I am a successful salesman, a former family business owner, and a student of the game.  I explained how my life experience is applicable to the game of Survivor and how I think that would make me successful on the island.  Thanks to my patient & supportive girlfriend.  Also to my partner in this quest, my oldest daughter who lives and breathes this game as I do.

 

I caught up with my casting call friend Lauren that I have seen at 4 of my 7 casting call attempts.20150926_123058

I met every single person in line, even if only briefly.  I met some good young guys that show that the next generation is now applying for this show as I think my kid will in a couple more years when old enough.  So now I wait for that magic call.  I am prepared as I believe the phone call is the 2nd stage of the process.  I will take the call and be prepared with my excitement and enthusiasm which is easy for me when talking Survivor.  I will continue the blogging efforts as I prepare for My Time.

I will end with a few shoutouts – In addition to my girlfriend, daughter and casting friend, to the people I met in line…@pickmeforsurvivor, @dylanaustinturner, @atmosephere, @pennilaneclifton, the good people I met at WGGB.

 

 

 

 


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Liar, Liar, no more fire! – Tips and tricks to tell if someone is lying

Put 20 people from various backgrounds on an island competing for 1 million dollars almost guarantees 18 of them will be lying contently.  So aside from making fire from bamboo, I believe one of the next most important skills revolves around lying.

 

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(SurvivorSuperFan Rob as Pinocchio and his girlfriend as Jasmine – Halloween 2014)

Tips for detecting a lie are as follows:

1. Behavioral pause or delay – If you ask a question and notice a delay before they reply, they may be trying to lie to you.

2. Verbal/non-verbal disconnect – A verbal “no” while nodding up and down shows their answer is false.

3. Hiding the mouth or eyes – This is the one I see most often when watching Survivor.  A hand over the liars mouth, or covering their eyes…they are “hiding” the truth.

4. Throat-clearing or swallowing – If done before answering, this indicates they are likely fibbing bigtime!  Though if done after the statement, it may not mean anything.

5. Hand-to-face activity – Biting of the lip, tugging on their lips, fiddling with their ears, tucking hair behind their ears…..Lies!

6. Grooming gestures – Fiddling with their buff, clothes, jewelry, hair….don’t believe what they are telling you to keep your game going.

 

So, to be a successful liar, learn to control the above, but a few more tips are listed here:

1. Keep it short, plausible and to the point.

2. Be Calm and confident

3. Include half-truths in your lie when possible.

4. Maintain physical closeness throughout – hand on the shoulder.

5. If accused, admit to something else to throw off the interrogator

6. Practice envisioning the “reality” of your lie.  I call this the Costanza Rule….”It’s not a lie if your truly believe it!”

 

 


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Over the top things I have done to catch the attention of Lynne Spillman, Jeff Probst and Mark Burnett


This one is better with less said, and more shown:] but to answer a few questions that will probably pop into your head:

-Yes I really am this obsessed.

-Yes I really did do all these things as ridiculous as some of them are.

-And yes if I got a call from a casting director, I would do even crazier things in preparation.

Thanks for watching, and as always if you like us spread the word or give us a shoutout.


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The Title of Sole Survivor!!! or 1 Million Dollars!!! What are my reasons for playing???

This a valid question.  Over the years, my answer has varied.  Going all the way back to my first attempt to be cast on The show, I was in it for the title of Sole Survivor.  I was very well off financially and did not need the money.  I boasted about how all I was interested in was the title of Sole Survivor.  My most recent audition video was last year, and I said I’m playing for the challenge, I’m playing for the adventure, and I’m playing for the money…  A lot has changed in the last five years, and after a divorce and bout with Lyme Disease, money is a bit scarce. With that said, I feel like as a true Survivor Superfan, I am driven by a love for the game.  I want the experience, and I will also play to win.  The money would be a nice addition, but I am also in a place in my life where it is not my driving force.  I simply want to play the game, enjoy every second of it, and play the game with everything I have.


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Shelter Hacks – Warm, Warmer, Warmest!

I generally run warm.  I have a little body fat, and a tenancy to sweat, not shiver.  With that said, I have never been left on an island where it could rain for days on end (although I hope to be in the future).  A few thoughts on warmth… the worst situations seem to be when it rains (and rains, and rains…).  I believe using the overlapping split bamboo method, a “waterproof” fire shelter is possible.

Bamboo Roof

 

 

 

 

The roof has to be high enough to avoid situations that have happened on previous seasons. One of these instances occurred in Survivor Amazon when Butch obsessively gathered firewood and stored it underneath the shelter. This meant that when the fire went awry it sparked the stored firewood in addition to the shelter and the whole thing went up in a blaze. The other instance occurred in Survivor Nicaragua when they put wooden chests containing most of their food around the fire in an effort to protect it from the rain. Needless to say wood surrounding a fire is not the best idea and they too lost items. This leads me to the idea that a SEPARATE shelter for firewood  makes sense for a wet season of Survivor as long as it is done safely and correctly.

A fire reflector can be added to reflect heat towards the opening of the shelter. Again, THE WOOD MUST BE FAR ENOUGH AWAY FROM THE FIRE!

Fire Reflector

 

 

 

 

Hot embers should also be babied, cared for, nurtured.  Protect them in sea shells off the ground and under cover.

Lastly, the idea of “hot rocks” should be explored.  You can heat dry rocks (not rocks from a creek, river, ocean, or other body of water as they can explode!).  Place the rocks near the fire and when they are nice and hot, they can be wrapped in cloth and snuggled with for many hours on end.  Piping hot rocks could also maybe be placed under the shelter, radiating heat up or in the center of the shelter (on another flat rock) as a heat source.

All these things take time and energy, but I believe these things would put my tribe  ahead in the game as I can make fire from bamboo easily now.  This removes a big time/energy concern allowing for some effort towards “luxuries”.


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Open Casting Calls

One way of being cast for Survivor is to attend one, (or many in my case) open casting calls. These events are typically run by local CBS affiliates, and in the early years they would draw many thousands of hopefuls. Camping overnight to be at the front of the line was commonplace. Nowadays the crowds are smaller, and there are around 250-500 folks, many of them being serial applicants like recent Survivor Dan Foley, who applied over 100 times! Here is a photo of him a few spots in front of me at a 2013 casting call in Massachusetts.

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My first casting call was in October of 2010. As an anniversary gift, I received a ticket to fly from New Hampshire, to Dallas Texas, for an open casting call at a car dealership. I prepared, read all I could find online, and had a 2 minute speech rehearsed. After waiting six hours for my turn, my group was told that we would have thirty seconds to give our pitch to the cameras! After listening to the people in line around me talking for six hours all about their extensive outdoor survival skills, I simply decided to take the opposite approach. The camera started and I rattled off all of the things I couldn’t do at the time… I don’t camp, I can’t make a fire, I’ve never built a shelter, I can’t fish, I’ve never been away from my kids, I’m a germaphobe, etc. Six months later I got a call. Shocked, unprepared, and sick at the time with Lyme Disease, I blew the call (it’s really a 2nd audition). Less than 2 minutes later, it was over. It took me quite a while to get healthy and redouble my attempts and efforts to get cast (that would be a story for another post).

Since that first time, I have attended 5 additional open casting calls, from Miami, to Pennsylvania, to Massachusetts. I have submitted 4 audition videos, going back to the Sear’s Fan Favorite contest. The most recent being a video submitted to be considered for Blood vs. Water. Below is a link to the casting page listing upcoming casting calls:
http://www.cbssurvivorcasting.com/Survivor-Open-Casting-Calls

I have met some great people at the casting events, I would say that the best way to describe it, is that it’s like Day 1 on the island. You meet people from all walks of life, age groups, demographics…and you get to practice reading people, as well as other social aspects of the game.

Springfield Audition Tribe

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Survivor Casting Call Miami

I will continue to hit casting calls within driving distance, and attend others as the location and time allows. My hope would be that this blog catches the attention of Lynne Spillman and the casting folks…Call me! I am prepared this time!