Jeff asks Bobby Jon whether he trusts his tribe, and adorably, Bobby Jon says that he does. "If you don't trust them, you shouldn't be on a tribe with them," he insists. Jeff asks Steph if she trusts the three guys. "I do," she says with a smile. Jeff tries to foment a little more disharmony by bringing up the fact that Ibrehem, James, and Bobby Jon are all...from the south? And he wonders if Steph is afraid that they'll boot her because...she's a Yankee? I don't know. This part is stupid. The Civil War is over, Jeff! Steph says that she's paranoid all the time about being voted off, but she's done her very best, and that's all she can do.
See, this is why I love Steph possibly as much as any woman on this show, ever. Not only is she an very physically and mentally strong person -- I don't recall hearing her complain about the conditions, no matter how crappy they got -- but she has managed to make the fact that she's a woman among guys an utter non-issue. It's like, until Jeff brings up the fact that they're all guys except for her, you kind of forget. Because not only has she been such a ridiculous challenge ass-kicker that it would be absurd to vote her off on a challenge-usefulness theory over either James or Ibrehem, but she has never once leveraged one single shred of the sort of gender-war bullshit that you see women drag out on these shows all the time. She has never gone in search of big brothers, or daddies, or protectors, or flirt partners -- I only even know Steph is straight because I've seen her bio and the discussion of her boyfriend back home. I admire just about every single thing about the way she's played, and the way she's approached her position in the game, and I think she and Bobby Jon have put on a remarkable display of how you handle being on a completely sucky tribe without ever looking like a self-pitying weenie. She befriended Angie when it wasn't clear that that was the horse to bet on, she's resisted getting into personal beat-downs at almost every opportunity, she has tried like hellat every challenge that's been put to the team, and she doesn't seem to have a lick of spite or meanness about any of it. She is flat-out awesome, and while I don't think she has a chance in hell of winning, I think she and I should totally have drinks and discuss how much we freaking hate stupid people.