Happy 8/8/08! If you aren’t familiar with Chinese culture, 8 is a very lucky number since it sounds a lot like the Chinese word for prosperity. Check out vanity license plates belonging to Chinese drivers and they’re very likely to have a few 8’s in there. My parents and I have multiple 8’s in our cell phone numbers by design.
Unsurprisingly, the 2008 Olympics in Beijing are starting 8/8/08 at 8:08:08 PM Beijing time (8 AM Eastern time in the U.S.). Of course, NBC won’t allow live coverage of it and they’ll be airing a recording tonight. I’m very excited about the opening ceremonies, particularly the fireworks display, which I have high expectations for considering that China invented fireworks and will want to put on a good show. Actually, I’m watching a live online stream of the opening ceremony right now provided by some South American website. Isn’t the Internet amazing? The show is spectacular so far, definitely try to catch it tonight if you can.
Most of the events seem interesting to me and I’ll try to watch as many finals as I can. I particularly like the events that nobody cares about except at the Olympics, like archery and table tennis. The track & field events aren’t as appealing though; with all the doping scandals surrounding them, it’s hard to trust whether the athletes are clean. Yeah, it’s cool to see records broken, but I think everybody is suspicious now and wondering whether that gold medal’s going to be revoked in a few years.
Here’s to a couple weeks of good sport!
UPDATE: I’m at the research lab waiting for my partner to show up so I ended up watching most of the show. Wow, what a spectacular display. There’s no way London’s topping this for the 2012 Olympics.
Right now it’s the Parade of Nations. They have a giant ring of cheerleaders waving and dancing in place while all the countries enter the stadium. Those poor girls, they’ll have to dance for two hours!!
UPDATE 2: Wow at the fireworks, particularly the one in the shape of dove wings. Incredible imagery. And what a staggering lighting of the torch. China has delivered. I can’t wait to watch this again tonight with better quality and American commentary.
UPDATE 3: I’ve been reading online comments about the ceremony and people outside the U.S. are astonished that we have to wait until tonight to watch it. Meanwhile, an estimated 2 billion people around the world watched it live. Thank you NBC!!