Olympics CPod website
With the London Olympics now underway I'm curious whatever happened to the special Olympics website CPod set up around the time of the Beijing Olympics. It was great ..having the Chinese for all the countries and lots of vocab related to the olympic events. Mostly I'd like to know if there's any chance of resurrecting it? What say ye CPod?
bababardwanJuly 29, 2012, 03:25 AM
Thanks podster and daenaf. hehe, yeah I thought Mr Beans appearance and his dream was brilliant, and I thought the opening ceremony was awesome. Very impressed. When I got the avatar there were only a couple to choose from, but I was looking for one like this:
I have a newfound appreciation for British humour. Even the queen, for pity's sake. I've been surprised to hear that many people in China thought the opening ceremony compared favorably to that of the Beijing Olympics. There has already been a lot of analysis of the differences, but I guess my two cents is that the Beijing Olympics was about celebrating history, which to the Chinese may be less interesting because they already grew up learning about Zheng He, etc, whereas the London Olympics was also largely a celebration of creativity (with such notable fictional characters as Mr. Bean and James Bond, among many others. ) Personally while I found the London opening ceremony brilliant, it did not occur to me to say that it was somehow "better" than Beijing's. I guess I felt a bit relieved for their sake that it wasn't much worse
hehe, yeah..well I've always enjoyed British humour, but I have a newfound appreciation for the Queen. I so wish she'd actually done the parachuting in....that would have impressed me no end, hehe. It was nicely done all the same.
I hadn't caught any of the Chinese talk of it. Are you living in China mate? I think I've had that impression before that you are. If so, whereabouts? Anyhow, it's interesting to hear their feedback..thanks. :)
yeah, I was pleasantly surprised about how good it was, very glad to see that, and I think you've put it well...a celebration of creativity.
I'm not in China, just reporting what someone from China who watched it here in the US said, and this person also cited many friends in China who expressed similar sentiments by microblog, or whatever. Actually I was practising English understatement; what I really heard is that some Chinese people were saying the the London opening was "100 times better."
Wait, you mean that wasn't actually the Queen parachuting in? The Chinese should be excoriating them for fakery! (Wasn't that a common theme of the Beijing Olymics -- foreigners bashing China for fake fireworks, fake singing, etc.)
ok. I thought you were American but I thought you might be currently in China....you've at least been before, right? I thought I'd read stuff of yours that made me think you had local knowledge [which I don't have]. Yeah, I should read more online Chinese news articles...but as I have trouble keeping up with the lessons here, I rarely venture onto anything else. Oh well, that feedback is interesting but I don't really see the necessity for them to compare. The Beijing Games were fantastic and I don't think theres any need to detract from that...just enjoy each for what it has to offer. One hopes that each games is going to be more mindblowing than the last...leaving one with the question...how can they top this?
"Wait, you mean that wasn't actually the Queen parachuting in?"
haha, I thought someone might pick me up on that. Well I only picked up on it because her feathers were so unruffled so quickly. I didn't think anyone's hair could look that good so quick...unless there's a hairspray that I'm not aware of...in which case, maybe she did after all...forgive my skepticism.
The Chinese should be excoriating them for fakery!"
haha, very good. The concept was so good in this case that I think we'll allow it...that and her advanced years...though here's a guy who did it for his 100th birthday:
pps...I'd love to know who came up with the idea and been a fly on the wall when it was first proposed to her
don't you love the attire for the jump? how she kept the dress down while the whole world was watching was quite a stunt in itself....
LOL... here's where I confess that not only did I not watch the jump, (or any part of the Olympic hoohah for that matter,) but that I would be quite content to see all members of Britain's 'royal family' jump out of any kind of aircraft. Without parachutes!! ;)
bababardwanJuly 29, 2012, 03:48 AM
Clay linked to the ChinesePod Olympics website in this old N&F here:
..2nd comment from the top...but the link is now broken
Am I the only one interested in seeing if this can be restored? I guess I've probably got Buckley's but I still thought it worth a shot...
No - you have a supporter here Baba. I have to admit upfront that my interest in sport these days does not go far beyond Rugby League and long walks, but my interest has been awoken because it is high summer here and there is not much else to do but watch the Olympics. :)
I did miss the Opening. A Chinese work mate found my nonchalance about the Opening ceremony surprising - 'but my mother watched the whole thing!' she said. Then I asked 'what was your favourite things?' and she said 憨豆先生 and 贝克汉姆. Because 'everyone in the whole world loves 憨豆先生, and all the women in the world love 贝克汉姆.
There has been a lot of coverage of the Olympics - two national channels carry it pretty much non-stop, and one provincial channel I noticed was spoofing just about everything Olympic.
I read about Chinese expectations in the China Daily. Seemed fairly realistic to me (compared to what I am used to reading about Australia). They seem to be exceeding expectations at the moment but it is early days.
Yeah - I would love a bit of a guide from ChinesePod - but I don't think that will help my comprehension of the main anchor here - China's Eddie McGuire - he mumbles and speaks quickly. And for some reason he rarely looks at the camera - who is this guy I wonder and where did they get him from?
I was interested in seeing the multi-lesson Olympics link restored. My take was that even though many of the lessons wouldn't have helped with actually watching the event on TV, it would still be relevant. Unfortunately, most of the events I'd want, Cpod didn't create lessons for anyway. C'est la vie.
Thanks also for 憨豆先生 ...I immediately realised that it would be Mr Bean from 豆先生 ...but had to look up 憨...han1...hehe, meaning silly or simple minded.
"I read about Chinese expectations in the China Daily. Seemed fairly realistic to me (compared to what I am used to reading about Australia)."
“China's Eddie McGuire”
“I was interested in seeing the multi-lesson Olympics link restored.”
...pretz, do you mean that whole other website that CPod set up that I was mentioning at the start of this thread? or do you mean a list of the lessons on this site? If it was the latter, then there is a pretty long list of them here:
..but that other website had so much more.
"Unfortunately, most of the events I'd want, Cpod didn't create lessons for anyway"
which ones would you like to see covered? I think CPod may be receptive to creating some new ones as it's quite topical, though I'm not sure how far ahead they produce them these days. Maybe they have some in the pipeline already....ok it's not Beijing, but it is a huge world event...also China seems to have got off to a good start and so I'm sure there'd be pretty strong interest and much discussion in China currently.
Actually, I was thinking of the website that existed for some amount of time during the Beijing Olympics that no longer exists. But for my current purposes, the link you produced is fine.
I was struck by how many Elementary lessons there are. The lesson breakout (if i'm not miscounting):
The topics were somewhat ok. My complaint around sports has always been that there isn't really much detail behind these lessons that would help a person understand the TV commentary. I will say part of the problem is that when I want TV, the commentators are speaking Chinese so fast, that sometimes they're saying something I understand, but need about 2 minutes to digest. I also get it that some of the dialog I need comes from other, non-sports related lessons ("he's under great pressure to win!" for example).
But generally, as i've mentioned in other places on this site, the sports lessons are basically the sport name, and then something along the lines of i like/don't like/understand/don't understand that sport. Basketball is a notable exception.
One of the greatest things about watching the Olympics in China is i'm not forcefed gymnastics (which I am not a fan of). The Chinese go for everything so far, 10M Air Rifle, Swimming, Judo, Archery, sports that hardly get a mention back in the States. It would be nice if Cpod would delve into the details around that the way they did a bit with basketball. Kobe Bryant's interview on CCTV was translated into Chinese. I understood a bit of it (typical speed problem with my understanding). But i'd love to watch the triathlon, marathon, 10K meters, 5K meters and others with the details behind them.
1. It seems to me that Australia approaches every Olympics with high expectations about our medal ranking - there are numerous articles in the press reinforcing this, but just for example the two prominent Australian swimmers who were shocked to miss out on medals had 'already ticked off these events as gold medals' according to the SMH - my ever reliable source of the Australian 'mood' ... :)
There was an article which had every event matching Australia's expected performance. There should be nothing wrong with this; I'm sure that it is potentially well-based, but I can't help but feel that we are always over-optimistic. Well, sporting achievement is a great source of pride in Australia - small population and all that. We have almost everything on our side too (wealth, good climate, generous govt. subsidies). But for me the hubris is over-powering (I'm from another era.)
2. The events are on CCTV1 and CCTV5 Sports -
try http://tv.cntv.cn/live/cctv5 (I note that it says that the video only works on IE and Firefox so I haven't taken the time to check it.)
I have only watched on TV -
The guy in question - I think he is on the sports channel and in Beijing. (I just went to check and of course he is not on at present. But I also noticed a program for CCTV7 so it seems that there is some there as well.) The anchors in London are easier for me to understand.
Maybe there is an avid watcher in China who can give you a better roadmap to Olympic programs.
"I was thinking of the website that existed for some amount of time during the Beijing Olympics that no longer exists"
ok, yeah well that was the one I was asking about at the start of this thread...whether it could be resurrected.
"I was struck by how many Elementary lessons there are"
...yeah, I noticed that too
"isn't really much detail"
..yeah, well I think that would be to some extent explained by the fact that I think not only the olympic sports lessons but other sports lessons have been down the lower end of the levels. As sports have a wide appeal I'm guessing that's why they end up in the lower level lessons...to involve/attract the maximum number of poddies. But that doesn't mean they shouldn't start taking the sports lessons to the next level..especially on the popular one's they've covered.
"i'm not forcefed gymnastics"
..well this was a somewhat surprising comment for me. I knew Americans loved their gymnastics but I thought they were pretty enthusiastic about a whole range of other sports as well and certainly have always been successful in a wide range of sports. Your mention of swimming [and by implication that it's not well covered in US like it is in China] is particularly surprising as the US have always done so well, and particularly with Michael Phelps being the greatest swimmer ever and still competing.
You do raise something that is somewhat of a problem for me here. Because of the time differences between London and Oz, most of the stuff is happening in the middle of the night. If I go to watch replays the next day, it's hard to do this without them spoiling the result. I've also found it hard to find a good source online for watching what I want when I want. There seems to be a good US site...nbc I think it was, but it won't play outside the US.
1. ok, yeah, I wasn't sure if you meant our expectations of the spectacle London is putting on [eg the opening ceremony] or our expectations of our athletes. Yeah, I completely agree with you. The media are totally over the top and I think quite unfair on our athletes.
2. "The anchors in London are easier for me to understand."
..yeah, but they'd be in English, and is your Chinese Eddie speaking in Mandarin?
'yeah, but they'd be in English'
I wasn't being as clear as I could - I mean the CCTV guys in London. I am assuming Chinese Eddie is in Beijing. He was on again last night mumbling away to someone in the wings - it's like they don't have a light on top of the camera alerting him to which one is running.
But I don't want to give the wrong impression; generally the CCTV coverage is excellent, with a wide range of sports as pretzl says.
Watched the men's diving last night, which I think China won - the Chinese competitors look like mere boys, certainly a lot younger than those they were diving against.
I misspoke. Americans are definitely given a heapin' helpin' of swimming. I do like swimming, so that's ok by me.
I share your timezone issues as well. 4 years from now, Rio is only 15 hours behind Sydney/Melbourne, so does watching events get better or worse?
the diving was depressing. We had a shocker on the 4th round, which dropped us from 1st to 4th and no getting back from there :-(
The CCTV coverage is pretty good and comprehensive so far. My only gripe is with myself, in that I'm only picking up about 15-20% of the commentary, with the exception of the inordinate amount of "feichang piaoliang", "bu cuo", etc. At least I've improved from the 1-2% I was picking up during the Beijing coverage!
hmm, that doesn't sound much better. I reckon the ideal thing is to have the major events happening in the evening time here..after work...peak viewing time. So I guess India is probably closer to being ideal...a few hours behind.
" with the exception of the inordinate amount of "feichang piaoliang", "bu cuo","
..hehe, I can just imagine. Interestingly those words were predicted to feature in Olympic commentary by Ken in one of the olypic lessons prior to the Beijing games. ...pretty sure it was the gymnastics one.
'the diving was depressing'
First, I think it is interesting you say 'we had a shocker' - I must admit given my location I am naturally barracking for the Chinese too. I don't often see an Aussie on screen - although there is one (Chinese Australian) in the table tennis, I haven't seen them in action yet. Maybe they have been and gone.
Second - I must have flipped over to something else and missed the depressing but.
'My only gripe is with myself, in that I'm only picking up about 15-20% of the commentary'
Yeah - it is difficult - I am not over-analysing but my comprehension would be similar to yours I think. I can pick up details when they are talking about the program - and, as you say, the often repeated words. Then I try and pick up the 'scores' for the competitors. I pretty much pick up the different countries but miss the unusual ones. Sometimes I have picked up descriptions like so and so is 25 years of age and other personal details. Occasionally they talk about the weather and I have got that. When they talk to competitors I can usually pick up something - because they usually say the same kind of thing. But when they are describing the action or strategy or tactics or whatever my vocab lets me down. I am better with certain sports - I have tried to learn a bit about racquet sports (well, tennis.) If only we had Rugby League in the Olympics - I reckon I would understand 80 - 90 % of that. :)
Hi bodawei, I think Chris's "we" was refering to the Brits, who missed out on a medal. The Chinese took the 金牌. I'm interested in your use of "barracking". In British English I think I'm right in saying this is usually a negative meaning (like jeering) to show disapproval. I assume your Ausie meaning is more along the lines of cheering on (in support) though - interesting.
Hi guys, yep I should have clarified, I'm a Brit. Our divers were in gold medal position up until half way, but then had a very poor 4th dive which basically put them out of contention for a medal. Not to take anything away from the Chinese duo - they were most impressive and, importantly, very consistent.
toianw - thanks for putting me straight on who had had a shocker - I should have realised, knowing chris is a Brit.
'Barracking' - I think we have had this discussion on ChinesePod before, but I didn't realise until now that it is actually a negative, jeering, meaning in Britain. Yikes! That's disturbing. We are usually fairly close in our language, sharing a lot of slang. In Australia and New Z'len it has the opposite meaning - apparently from the 19th century and originally Irish.
I've got to be careful now I have real English people in my family - my grand-daughter is about to pick up a pommie passport. I'll have to learn to be nice. Our mission at this stage is to prevent her being, or speaking like, either a chav or a toff. (Not that she could be a toff anyway even if she wanted to be - see I'm learning fast.)
hehe, are you saying the weightlifters aren't beautiful? I took it that the piaoliang was usually referring to the movement, the shot, the execution whatever. Perhaps it is best applied in the gymnastics for mine though, so fitting that I think I first heard it there.
yeah, I thought Chris was referring to the Brits and nearly said something but I haven't caught any of the diving so thought maybe he'd changed allegiances also.
I reckon it's a shame the Tour de France was so close to the Olympics..it would have been nice to see the British track team do better and I'm sure the Tour must have taken some toll.
"I took it that the piaoliang was usually referring to the movement, the shot, the execution whatever. "
Exactly. The weightlifting quip was said somewhat tongue-in-cheeck, but maybe also down to the fact that in weightlifting, you either succeed or fail - there's fewer degrees of "beauty". I don't think it would sound out of place though if someone made a big lift look effortless.
"I'm sure the Tour must have taken some toll."
You'd think so, but the cyclists themselves said the gap between the tour and the olypics was a pretty long "holiday" when measured in terms of the schedule of a professional racer (Medal or not, these guys are all supreme athletes). To be honest, I think our expectations were rather over-hyped for the men's road race. The organisers (to their credit - I suppose) chose a course that didn't really suit our team and at the end of the day, their tactics didn't work. Good to see the women's team pick up a medal on the following day though.
ok, gotcha. I wonder what adjectives they do tend to use. perhaps 厉害，强，太棒了[well it's a bit like a big cudgel they're lifting, hehe].
Yeah, I thought I'd heard them suggest that the gap was ok....actually I think it was Phil Liggett I heard make the comment that they should be well recovered...wondered how true that really was though.
"The organisers (to their credit - I suppose) chose a course that didn't really suit our team"
..yeah, I heard that too...that is to their credit..good sportsmanship.
mikeinewshotJuly 29, 2012, 07:38 PM
As a Brit, I am interested to know how non-Brits found the opening ceremony. I was entranced by the 2008 opening.
As far as I was concerned, I was not too sure about the beginning, and indeed whether any non Brit would understand it. The commentary we had on BBC television did not explain it very well ...
Also I found the camera work lacking in that I don't believe you got a good perspective on the size of the spectacle ...
However, I am pleased to say that I really liked the humour and the emphasis on youth, and I think the creation of the olympic flame was brilliant.
Locals worry every Olympics whether the rest of the world has understood their opening ceremony. The fact is that most of the rest of the world are just looking for entertainment, and don't care too much about the meaning of the ceremony.
I didn't understand the ceremony because I didn't catch about 90% of the words in Chinese. I remember some dude that after the 2nd time seeing the opening ceremony in full, and then remembering that dude was Kenneth Branaugh. After I remembered Branaugh, I recognized the transliteration of his name into Chinese. I thought the segment around the guys in the top hats were the robber barons (or is that us Americans), but I understand the pretty video very well. I recognized the nu3wang2, but not the Elizabeth part. Fortunately, I know what she looks like :-)
What I was struck by was how many non-white faces were in the opening ceremony. I remember some Brit like JK Rowling remarking that London is really the only multi-cultural city in Britain; that Manchester, Birmingham and other big cities are really overwhelmingly white. But that same person remarked that it was the chickens coming home to roost from all that Empire building.
Well there are non Brits and then there are non Brits. As an Aussie we have close ties with UK, especially historically and so it was easily understood and all very familiar. Then there is the rest of the British Empire [or ex British Empire] .... I reckon would also likely be quite familiar though I'm not as sure. I'm sure the Indians would have loved the cricket scene, hehe, but it would be interesting to know how much of the rest of it the average Indian followed. Then there is the rest of the English speaking world, and then there is the rest of the world [ though some things would no doubt be more familiar than others. How many languages has JK Rowlings Harry Potter been translated into...I know it's in Chinese for example]. I guess it would depend on the level of education, but also on the quality of the commentary. For those familiar/connected a celebration, and for the rest an education...so something for everyone. Oh yeah, I thought the olympic flame was absolutely inspired. I heard rumours that Beckhame was somehow going to light the flame by kicking a flaming soccer ball in which would have been uber cool, but I guess that would have had shades of Barcelona with an arrow shot in, and the concept..the symbolism behind this was the best yet...loved it.
GrambersAugust 01, 2012, 02:29 PM
Bit of reading practice for fellow poddies: check out today's BBC中文网 press digest, which summarises a particularly provocative Times op-ed, pouring scorn on China's '残酷' scouting and training system. I love the last line....精英体育的成功不能说明政治文化的美德，它却往往显示了一种不自信和道德缺陷 ...'insecure and morally defective'. Ouch.
RJAugust 01, 2012, 11:02 PM
Family keeps granparents death secret from Chinese diver until she won gold medal.
RJAugust 05, 2012, 02:33 PM
bababardwanAugust 10, 2012, 09:46 PM
Can't wait to see the mens 4x100m final. I think USA will come close and put in a good show, but I still think Jamaica will win...and if Bolt doesn't decide to jog for the last 30m then we may have a world record on our hands.