Fashion Challenge

5.2.2005

By Jeffrey Epstein

When first we first met Rachel Robinson, she was an 18-year-old queer competitor on MTV's Road Rules. Now, at 22, she's competed on numerous Real World/Road Rules challenges (winning once so far), and she can currently be seen as a 'Bad Ass' team member on the latest challenge: 'The Inferno 2.' But outside of nonstop competitions, Robinson and fellow teammate Veronica Portillo have started a T-shirt business called College Drop Out. The name is fitting as neither finished college, but they can still kick your butt'and they make cool shirts, too!

What made you want to get into the T-shirt business?
After Battle of the Sexes 2, I was wearing a lot of shirts with political messages. Shane [Landrum, her also-queer Road Rules teammate] and I have been communicating with each other through shirts for a long time''Where's Rachel?' or 'Where's Shane?' People would stop me on the street and ask me where they could find the shirts I wore on the shows. I realized there was a market for this. Veronica and I had a passion and wanted to go into the T-shirt company. So that's how it started.

After all those challenges, shouldn't you maybe be raking it in as a trainer?
[Laughs] I've actually thought about it. I always get girls coming up to me asking how I stay in shape. But to tell you the truth, the T-shirt business is so much fun. It's really rewarding to come up with an idea, bring it to life, and see it on someone. It's cool. Stressful, I will admit. But definitely rewarding.

How many challenges have you done at this point?
I've done four. 'Battle of the Sexes,' 'The Gauntlet''where I was a winner, 'Battle of the Sexes 2,' and 'The Inferno 2.'

OK, why?
You know what? I started so young. I'm still so young'I'm 22 now. I started it when I was 18. If you're 19, 20, 21, and they call you to compete on a TV show for thousands of dollars and a vacation in Jamaica, you don't turn it down. And I'm the kind of person who loves competition.

What was your favorite moment of this challenge?
Competitively, it was when I got the bullseye on the 'X Marks the Spot' challenge. I won $10,000 for my team on my own. But Tonya throwing Beth's clothes in the pool was definitely a night I'll never forget.

What's been your favorite moment of any challenge?
My first challenge'it was still such a new thing, all the cast members had come together. It wasn't what it is today. It's become a calculated market where everyone comes on with an agenda. On my first challenge, it was really relaxed for the most part and everyone was really genuine. When I got voted off, I got a lot of love by the cast. I think getting voted off on Battle of the Sexes was my favorite moment ever. I got to see how much people really liked me. So it worked in my favor.

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