The other night I went to a “Garden of Hedonism Party” at Johnny Utah’s in NYC, home of a very large mechanical bull (OK! is actually having their holiday party there next month). Hosted by eco-site idealbite.com, the event featured organic apple ginger martinis, ‘eco-friendly’ sin-snacks (think three cheese enchiladas), the bull run by solar power for the night and ‘eco-loving celebs.’ Besides Natasha Bedingfield and Jennifer Coolidge who were busy riding the bull, it was a blast from the past when I ran into former Survivor winners Ethan Zohn and Jenna Morasca.
I first met Ethan and Jenna about four years ago when I went to Panama to interview the cast of Survivor All-Stars just before they started filming. If I remember correctly, like Amber Brkich and Rob Mariano, it was during that season when they started dating. Although I like them both a lot, I can’t believe that four plus years later they’re still dating! When I caught up with them we talked about how they can’t believe they’ve been together so long either, especially because although they both won their respective seasons on Survivor, they don’t seem to have a whole lot else in common, at least initially and on the surface. They told me they liken themselves to a lesser-known version of Nick Lachey and Vanessa Minnillo. Nick, like Ethan, is the cool, calm, collected, nice to everyone guy whereas Vanessa and Jenna are a bit more high energy, spontaneous, spunky and gravitate more to friends than strangers. But, in both cases, the balance seems to works.
It had been a while since this meeting but Ethan, Jenna and I have always kept in touch intermittently – Ethan even offered to be a ringer for Team OK! when we played on a media soccer league. I was team captain and knew enough to know that although on a team with a bunch of ‘football’-loving people from the UK, we weren’t so good. But, my teammates had more pride than I and we never took nearly pro player Ethan up on his offer. That said, the other night Ethan and Jenna told me both their careers have changed course a bit since I last saw them.
Ethan, who formerly dedicated all his time to his charity Grassroots Soccer has turned his attention to more eco-activities (hence their presence at this party) and I believe is working on an eco TV show. Jenna, who I think had been dabbling in a bathing suit line and hosting gigs now has a job casting award-winning reality show “Amazing Race” and is in school studying psychology!
They each won $1 million on Survivor and they’re both doing great, together, which was good to see. When it was time to leave the party they offered us a ride home in their luxury gas powered vehicle provided by LimoGreen.
Although Ethan sat in the passenger seat up front “because I’m the guy” and Jenna sat with the girls in the back, as soon as we dropped them off at Jenna’s apartment (they’re still not officially living together), they immediately held hands and walked down the block like a couple newly in love.