Apr 13, 2010

Survivor: Panama member visits

by Cat Hewett

Survivor cast member Austin Carty said that when the producers of the reality show were looking for people to join the crew in Panama for Season 12, they found the most incompetent young men in the country.

“I am convinced that when looking to cast the young men’s tribe, the producers scoured the entire United States of America in search of the four most inept, moronic, unprepared men they could find,” Carty said. “Rest assured, they found us.”

Carty was the eighth survivor to be voted off that year and since his torch was put out, Carty has published two books.
Carty spoke to members of Liberty chapter of the English Honors Society Sigma Tau Delta about his latest book “High Points and Lows: Life, Faith and Figuring it all out,” Thursday, April 8.

Carty read an excerpt from Dostoyevsky’s “The Brothers Karamazov” to begin the evening. In this excerpt a young woman talks to a priest and tells him that she wants to be a good servant to those in need, but could not live with the ingratitude.

“It is such a shameful thing to stand up, especially at a Christian university, but I relate so much to that woman because I love the idea of being a good guy,” Carty said. “I love the idea of being charitable, philanthropic and helpful and — you know what else I love —being thought of as a good Christian, but only if somebody is going to notice me.”

Carty then told students about his man-to-man talks with his grandfather. Carty said these talks usually consisted of conversations about Disney movies and soccer, but on one occasion his grandfather got very serious and challenged Carty to never sell himself short and to always believe in something bigger. Those words, Carty said, became his mantra when his grandfather died a few years later.

Carty then discussed his time on Survivor: Panama. Carty told students what it was like for people to know his name and have people stare at him in restaurants.

“For me, going on that show was not just about getting my 15 seconds of fame and it was not just about winning a million dollars,” Carty said. “For me, getting to go on that show ended up being about finding out what life was all about.”

Carty then shared parts of his book with the students in attendance. The essays collected in his book range from topics like “Saved by the Bell” to baseball and the death of Rev. Bruce Hopper, his best friend’s father.

“Here is what I believe now,” Carty read. “There is no answer. There is only the promise of faith. In light of a tragedy like Bruce’s one can only cling to faith and seek an answer in scripture.”

For more information about Carty or his book, visit AustinCarty.com.

Contact Cat Hewett at

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