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Opening Ceremony

8 comments | 11:22 am | top |
Crashed Rick's headquarters last night for the Opening Ceremonies of the 2008 Bejing Olympic Games. I brought a couple of packs of Grainwaves (the best), and plenty of Coke to keep us awake.

We were watching the proceedings on Rick's Commodore Amiga monitor which did the job.

The displays put on by the Olympic hosts were bizzare to say the least, yet still astounding in their execution. You find yourself staring at the screen wondering what 4 colourfully attired puppets have to do with the huge square pattern of a thousand or so dancers. The dancers with paint-brushes attached to their hands were incredibly agile and managed to draw a fairly decent picture on the huge scroll which appeared to be center stage for most of the preliminary events of the ceremony.

TV One Olympics commentator Keith Quinn entertained us with a number of amusing reflections on the ceremony. Refering to a parade of traditionally-dressed Chinese marchers he commented "They are representing the provinces which they represent". And a bit later on, "The silk-road was instrumental in allowing China to trade with... other countries". Give the guy a break though, I suppose he's not really into this stuff, his specialty is sport, and he had a few interesting statistics and comments to make about the teams as they came out into the Birds Nest Stadium.

We were treated to some pretty fantastic fireworks, and many other displays of China's power. I can only wonder at how they pulled off some of the spectacles. The girls flying about over the stage, suspended by wires. The guys running around the large globe which rose out of the floor of the stage, with Sarah Brightman and Liu Huan singing "You and Me", standing on top. Actually the synchronised boxes which rose up and down was pretty impressive too. As I commented to Rick, "The Chinese seem to like a lot of people doing the same thing at the same time." The Chinese National Anthem definitely had that Communist ring to it, and brought to mind the National Anthem of the USSR (a favourite - even if it's translation into English does send a shiver up your spine).

204 Countries! We turned the box off at about number 90, and had half an hour of sleep. 2:30am we woke up again and blimey, if they weren't still churning them out. We watched for a bit longer and then fell asleep again. We are die-hard Olympics fans... New Zealand apparently walked out onto the track immediately before China's team - which was last up, as is the tradition at the Olympic Games. I will steer clear of the political/ethical aspect of the Bejing Olympic Games for now, apart from quoting a Chinese person who said to me the other day "I will kill you if you disagree with the Bejing Olympics". Anyway, hope to blog on this interesting subject shortly. Till then,
Go New Zealand!

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Blogger Rick said...

Tumeke made the same observations we did about the happless commentators!

7:00 pm, August 10, 2008 
Blogger Theresa said...

"die-hard Olympics fans"... my foot. You went to bed. Actually, I was watching [till 3:45, not hard-core enough,]when the Kiwis came out. They didn't come out just before China. The Australian outfits looked terrible and there was way too much hype. Obviously it wasn't Keith Quinn's fault, they are given a script of what to say and he probably thought it was rubbish so just said what things represented. Or the script didn't have much in it. If you had seen the other opening ceremonies you would know that Keith is awesome.

11:15 am, August 11, 2008 
Blogger Andy Moore said...

Kinda my point... I'd never heard of Keith before the Opening Ceremony, but so many of the things he said were unintentionally funny. Still, as I said, the history and culture of China, etc, is not his speciality obviously.

11:20 am, August 11, 2008 
Blogger Theresa said...

If you hadn't heard of Keith Quinn before I don't think you are in a position to criticise him. He is a legend!

3:05 pm, August 12, 2008 
Blogger Andy Moore said...

Was I criticising him?... Far as I'm concerned, he was in a bit over his head when it came to commenting on the non-sports aspects of the Opening Ceremony.

There were far more funny/weird things he said than the two I wrote down... but it was late and I can't remember them... :)

4:14 pm, August 12, 2008 
Blogger Isabella Clinton said...

I'm not really worried that I missed seeing everyone walk around although I would have liked to see tha fireworks they look great in the pictures!

6:38 pm, August 13, 2008 
Blogger Andy Moore said...

Yes, only problem is, some of the fireworks were faked. They were done with animation, and broadcasted to all the TVs in the World...

Sigh, that's the Chinese Government for you...

9:20 pm, August 13, 2008 
Blogger Isabella said...

Yea that is a bit off the mark, the only news I ever get about china is from your blog, so yea I don't now a whole ton. ;)

6:17 pm, August 15, 2008 

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