Out with a Bang

We Beijingers have now survived our second day without the Games.  I must say that there is a big sense of relief in the air.  The event was not only safe, but Beijing simply did a great job in hosting this massive sporting event.  Zhuhe!  Zhuhe! Congratulations! Congratulations!

As it opened, the Games ended with a bang on Sunday night.  Like everyone else in town I plopped myself in front of the TV to watch the closing ceremonies wondering how in the world the opening ceremonies might be topped.  Not to worry, it wasn't.  In fact, I found myself scratching my head through most of the show, wondering if someone had kidnapped Zhang Yimou and given the director's job to a CCTV hack instead.  It was as cheesy and tedious as the annual Chinese New Year Gala Extravaganza broadcast on CCTV.  Cloned 5 year olds with painted on smiles.  Lots of women in prom dresses.  Lights attached to everyone!  And what was that pulsating pagoda all about? I did get a chuckle out of the men in suits who couldn't figure out how to wave the flags.  Mercifully, it did not last long. 

I will say that there was one part of the show I loved — the fireworks, especially the ones shot off from the building itself.  I think there was enough fire-power attached to the Bird's Nest to send it and the 91,000 people inside into lower orbit. 

Now that would have been something to watch!