Jacob Derwin is a Jewish music teacher. Which is not to say he is Jewish and teaches music — although both of those things also happen to be true — but rather that he happens to teach Jewish music. Thankfully, Jacob (who will be competing on Survivor: Ghost Island, which premieres Feb. 28 on CBS) did not waste too much time on his 60-Second Introduction clarifying that fact. Because he has so much more to say!
Not enough to fill 60 seconds, mind you, but still more! Oops, that was a bit of a spoiler alert, I suppose. You know what? Why don’t I stop writing and you can just watch the video above to see what Jacob has to say for and about himself, and then if you want to know more, you can check out his official bio below for additional details. Deal? Deal.
Name: Jacob Derwin
Hometown: Merrick, N.Y.
Current Residence: Brooklyn, N.Y.
Occupation: Music Teacher
Personal Claim to Fame: Nothing feels better than hearing your own music for the millionth time and still enjoy it. And even better, when other people hear your music for the first time and it makes them cry. You can’t fake those kinds of responses. It’s the best. Cheesy? Maybe. True? You bet, man.
Inspiration in Life: I have a few but I suppose Robin Williams is the most well-known one. When I was a little kid, The Genie from Aladdin was my entire sense of humor. That wild, 100-jokes-a-minute pacing, all the voices and wackiness completely dazzled me. As I got older, I got to appreciate all his other amazing roles and unabashedly nutty stand-up routines. I’m often told I’m too loud. I blame that entirely on Robin Williams.
Hobbies: Songwriting and performing those songs, telling stories — be that on stage or just to friends — and cooking with my mom. Shut up, it makes me happy. Also, I listen to a ton of podcasts, attend as many concerts as I possibly can, and spend a great deal of time panicking over current political events.
Pet Peeves: When people let little discomforts spoil an entire experience. When people feel a need to complain constantly, even when there’s nothing to complain about. The worst though? When people don’t have a sense of humor. Laugh, dammit!
3 Words to Describe You: Self-deprecating, charming, and affable (though others would say “punchable”).
If You Could Have 3 Things on the Island What Would They Be and Why? First would be my guitar because it gives me something I can focus on outside of the game. Next, one of those daily joke calendars because not only is it great for keeping track of time, but if your situation isn’t providing many laughs, it’s good to have a reliable way to find some. Finally, beard oil. I bought my first vile of this stuff about a year ago and it’s the best feeling thing ever. Plus, it’s really fun to respond to “are you wearing cologne?” with “no, just beard oil.”
SURVIVOR Contestant You Are Most Like: I’ve always felt like I related most to Stephen Fishbach, though I see a lot of David Wright in me as well. I’m a funny, nerdy, neurotic Jewish guy trying to make it in the entertainment business. I’m logical and smart (I like to think), but I’ve spent plenty of time crying in private.
Reason for Being on SURVIVOR: I’ve been dreaming of doing this for well over a decade. At this point, above all else, it’s to prove I can do what I’ve been saying I could do since I was a kid: win SURVIVOR. Part pride, part sticking it to the kids who tortured me growing up. It’s a “what have you accomplished?” kind of thing. I promise I’m not usually so vengeful!
Why You Think You’ll “Survive” SURVIVOR: This sounds stupid, but I’m really easy to talk to. I want to set up my situation so everyone knows they can come to me to chat and get support despite any problems they’re having personally or socially in the game. I’m a teddy bear, y’know? On top of that, I’m not a weakling. I can haul firewood and follow instructions when it comes to building shelters. I know how to make fire and untie knots and all that.