Jerry MacDonald made history before he ever walked through the Big Brother house's front door by being the oldest person ever cast for a reality TV show. And then the 75-year-old made memories by fondling a fellow houseguest two-thirds his age and being in the middle of several of the season's most heated shouting matches. Even so, the great-grandpa from Texas worked his way to the Final 3 before being evicted just short of the prize money. In our chat he tells us why he was so grabby, why he makes no apologies for his behavior in the house and the real reason behind his problems with Dan.
TVGuide.com: Getting booted just short of the money can't feel good.
Jerry MacDonald: It was a great ride, and I played as hard as I possibly could. I don't feel I have to apologize for any of my actions. I felt good about the people in the end, and in the last half of the season, I tried to play nice to improve my image. To get to the Final 3, I think, was quite an achievement.
TVGuide.com: Do you think you'd still be in the house if Memphis had won the final HOH?
Jerry: No, he had a deal with Dan, no questions asked. I tested it just before the eviction, because I had a couple of shirts that were too large — I hadn't worn them, and they were brand new. I gave them to Memphis, and he took them, but then the night before the eviction he gave them back and said I should give them to my son-in-law. I knew then that he had a deal with Dan either way.
TVGuide.com: What kind of information do you plan to bring to the jury house?
Jerry: I won't be in a position to sway people on how to vote, but I do know how a lot of people feel. A lot of that is going to determine who ends up in the end as the winner. But right at this moment, I have no idea how it's going to go.
TVGuide.com: You told Julie you think you could be the deciding vote.
Jerry: I think I very well could be. I don't want to say who I am leaning toward or why. I have reasons to go either way. And that's just something I'm going to have to think about hard. It's a life-changing situation for one of those men, and I want to use my head and do it right.
TVGuide.com: It could have also changed your life. Will there be any revenge in your vote?
Jerry: I like to leave sour grapes in the house if I can. There are a couple things I am going to consider in weighing my decision, and there may be a couple of things that happened in the house that bother me. But there isn't going to be any real animosity toward either one. I have reasons to dislike them both.
TVGuide.com: You were most outspoken earlier in the season against Dan, even calling him Judas. Do you still feel the same way about him?
Jerry: It's all part of the game, but I think Dan has a lot more talent than he realizes. What bothers me most about Dan is the arrogance. He doesn’t know how to win something and have other people enjoy it with him. He has to demonstrate like he's a superior-type person, and I don't like that.
TVGuide.com: We saw a range of emotions from you this season. Is that your nature, or did being in the house draw them out of you?
Jerry: I'm very upfront, and I don't hide anything. I don't talk behind people's backs, I talk right at them. I like to get things off my chest, whether it's emotion about my wife or if I'm angry. Either way, I don't keep it inside, and I think that's why I am as healthy as I am.
TVGuide.com: You said you're proud of yourself. What was your proudest moment in the game?
Jerry: It was probably winning the POV on the onion contest, when I had no reason to win POV other than to return a kindness to Keesha. By doing that, I kept her off the block and let Libra stay [on the block] and go home. And that absolutely changed the game.
TVGuide.com: The floaters definitely booted some strong players this year. How do you think you managed to sneak by until the end?
Jerry: I had never been on the block until the last four or five nominations. At that point, I decided to get quiet and be nice. [Laughs] And it worked. I just backed off and watched for my moments, and I slid kind of like a greased monkey right though the thing.
TVGuide.com: One of the season's most memorable moments had to be your "introduction" with April. What was going through your mind when you grabbed her boobs on Day 1?
Jerry: I did nothing wrong. She walked into my hands. [Laughs] It really was kind of strange to have this young girl just walk up to me and say, "Are they real?" I don't know how quickly I reacted, but I guess it was pretty quick. I'm not embarrassed by it. It was probably one of the most humorous things that happened on the whole show.
TVGuide.com: Think your wife saw the humor in it?
Jerry: I don't think I will have to explain it to her. When I came in here, she said, "Don't let any of those women get in bed with you." I told her if they do, it'll only be foreplay. [Laughs]
TVGuide.com: You'll be able to ask her soon enough, I guess. Are you looking forward to getting back home?
Jerry: I'm looking forward to it, but I don't know — maybe they better put me on Survivor or something to raise the stakes.
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