The Greatest Olympics Ever?

24 04 2008

As China steadies itself for the media onslaught in the summer, for the first time in history, the Olympics will be held in a Communist state under Capitalistic economic policies and a Totalitarian-styled regime. Quite reasonably, there have been a lot of concerns voiced by various nations about the clash in the true ideals of the Olympics and China’s heavy-handed approach in attending to “domestic” matters. Never before has the prestigious games been opposed so openly by citizens behind the geographical, cultural, and political boundaries that separates them.

For one, the ethnic Tibetans in the “Autonomous Region of Tibet” have been suppressed since 1949. The history books in China paint a picture of Mao’s troops liberating the Tibetan “slaves” in a class-based society. Sadly, what is failed to be mentioned are that many millions of Tibetans died working against their wills in slave camps for the Communistic beliefs held by China. Those that survived died from malnutrition after being forced to follow Mao’s failed economic and agricultural programs which led to a long famine in the harsh climates of the Tibetan plateau. The nation lost over 50% of their lands through China’s renaming and rezoning of their provinces. Even today, their senior monks are hand-picked by Chinese government officials instead of by the monasteries and their spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, is still banned in Tibet. Possessing a picture of the Dalai Lama or uttering his name in public are deemed serious offenses. The ubiquity of CCTVs (closed-circuit television aka security cameras), plainclothes cops, and cops disguised as monks on the streets of Lhasa ensure that nobody steps out of line. In fact, it’s a boot camp and not many people like boot camps when you’re forced to live in one for all your life.

So what’s going on with this summer Olympics in Beijing? Is it because of “western bias” against the communist state? Or is it “racism” as some Chinese blogs pout on the interweb? The IOC Olympics Games was revived in 1896 in Athens, Greece to promote peace and harmony through the enabling of ordinary citizens to participate in a global sporting event. Unfortunately, the Olympics is marred by a history of problems, political boycotts, and corruption. One of the nations that tried to boycott the Olympics was China who in 1976 forced Canada to withdraw Taiwan from the games who ended up missing 2 Olympics Games until 1984. What a bag of hypocrites.

Truth be told, ideally the Olympics should never be boycotted because of the values it tries to promote. In reality, something needs to be done and there is a definite need for a stronger person at the helm. Someone who can claim that his/her values firmly match that of the Olympics and is able to stick to them. A person without a conscience will continue to support the management at the IOC and the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing because of their hypocritical stance in that human rights in China shouldn’t be the concern of the citizens of the Olympic world. Whatever happened to peace?

In Nepal, an unidentified mountain climber was “deported” after security found a “FREE TIBET” flag in his backpack. The Nepalese police and soldiers are guarding Mount Everest to protect China’s interests with the authorization to use “whatever means necessary, including use of weapons” to stop the protests in the region. Media coverage in the region of Tibet and Lhasa has been neutered while government propaganda blankets the airwaves in mainland China. Oh and the whole bootcamp thing. Tibet has been turned into one after thousands of soldiers (not cops were brought into the capital) are now camping by Everest on China’s side of the mountain.

Chinese immigrants (legal and illegal) abroad have taken various stand-points. Some are of the belief that China-can-do-no-wong while others have realized the importance of human rights. To all you Chinese who actively support China’s activities, let me make it clear – the protests aren’t against the Chinese, but rather directed towards a government that has been corrupted by power and is now out of control socially.

Is this a case of too little too late or is the IOC simply not doing it’s job after failing to enforce China’s promise to clean-up their acts upon winning the bid for the 2008 Games?

It’s like fucking for babies instead of pleasure. Corporate money over ideals.

Screw human rights and peace. Let the Games begin!

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The Incredible Pats on the receiving end!

3 02 2008

I’d been bummed ever since learning that the hard-working San Diego Chargers were put to the sword by the New England Patriots who completed their 18-game winning streak and ensuring a perfect 100% win record this season. Then major disappointment as the stupid Favre-led Green Bay Packers fell to the about average New York Giants. The Pats are going to wipe out the Giants at the Superbowl XLII in Arizona I though. Boy was I wrong.

So yup. The Patriots lost out to the Giants in a thrilling final 35 seconds.

The warning signs were already there in the final 2 games for the season with the Giants beating Buffalo and then going on to narrowly losing out to today’s runner-ups, the blueboys from the North East.

In the Play-Offs, the wild-card Giants beat the offense heavy Jeff Garcia’s Tampa Bay in Tampa Florida, 24-14. Then they went out to beat Jessica Simpson’s boyfriend’s team, Dallas Cowboys in Dallas, 21-17. The final shocker was beating the all-rounder/excellent Green Bay Packers out in Green Bay in a closely contested gam, 23-20.

So the marking was up on the wall. Peyton Manning’s lil brother Eli could play thanks to a deadly combination of time-management and pushing out a rush play through Brandon Jacobs and the rookie Ahmad Bradshaw. While the former was all strength and tall steel, the latter was courage and intelligence. This in addition to the long-armed Plaxico Buress’ sticky hands who plays better than his look-alike Akon can sing, and the Giants are a pretty decent team. The trick was to figure out how to stop Eli before he threw the ball.

Their running game is excellent but they’re vulnerable in the short-pass category. The Pats defense couldn’t keep up with this formula despite an excellent game in the offense for the dimunitive Wes Welker. So they lost and in the process sent shockwaves throughout the nation. The team nobody thought could make it to the Play-Offs did it as a Wildcard team, then going on to take on much stronger opponents. Brady’s sacking was a special sweet moment for me to savor.

Overall, the Giants played with so much passion, the Patriots were left in the dust and the better team won in the end. In the closing stages just when we thought the Giants were out, Eli was able to keep their offensive drive alive by tearing away from the clutches of 2 opponent players. We thought he was sacked but he got the ball out somehow and their 2nd string wide receiver Tyree made an unbelievable catch with his helmet.

Burress managed to grab the game-winning touchdown pass from Eli Manning with 35 seconds on the clock with a dummy and a slant to the left corner. All this from a team that got beat in late November by Minnesota 41-17 back in the Giants stadium in New York. The coach was about to get fired, Eli looked like the worst quarterback in history, and the team was a joke. The Patriots were pleasantly beaten to open a new record – first in history for an NFC wildcard team to win the Super Bowl.

PS: Fox’s 720p HD coverage of the game was bad. There were a lot of pixelated spots all over the broadcast but that was noticeable only if we looked up close to the screen. Maybe done to ensure a smoother broadcasting.





Minnesota bent by Beckham

12 11 2007

Just a short piece here on the semi-pro Minnesota Thunder soccer team against the MLS professional team LA Galaxy featuring the right-foot of England’s over-hyped David Beckham. Once LA Galaxy was knocked out of the MLS Playoffs, their game against Minnesota initially scheduled for February was re-charted for this past weekend. Yesterday. Sunday the 11th on Veteran’s Day right here in Minneapolis at the 66K capacity Metrodome Stadium.

Saw the game at the Metrodome with a bunch of friends and boy did Minnesota push LA to their limits. LA in fact was outplayed and outfought for most of the game by the industrious hard fighting Minnesotan team but it was LA who opened the scoring.

First I’d like to point out that the kick-off was scheduled for 5:30 pm but all the singing and marching around on the field by kids and vets and other ppl gobbled up a good 45 minutes before #23 wearing the white jersey, reminiscent of his former team Real Madrid, could touch the ball. LA had Beckham taking the free kick every single time and that was the only name the commentator could remember. Everybody else was just “Galaxy” or “Thunder” haha. Must be humiliating to play for LA and have all the spot light and money go to just one person.

We were on the right side, Gate F, Section 127 and on the 5th Row right up-close to the action but for prolonged periods of time, all the action was on the other end. Minnesota was attacking wave after wave on the Galaxy goal area but out of nowhere, Beckham got the ball and floated (or bent) one in the box for a LA player to get to the end of the ball who slot it easily past the blundering keeper. If the Thunder’s goalie had jumped out to punch away the ball, that goal would never had happened. But the goal keeper was celebrity struck and the ball slid past his hapless outstretched hands. We were able to witness the goal on our end so it was a bitter sweet moment.

The 2nd half was pretty much the same. The throngs of young female high schoolers screaming for David Beckham was the same and the occasional catcalls flew around. LA started getting equal number of possession of the ball but Minnesota attacked more frequently so that meant we were seeing more of the ball on our end this time. And whadya know. We SCORED!!! Perfect short-pass play between the guys and which is what Minn shoulda been doing the whole time resulting in a terrific goal. The best part was we witnessed both goals on our end.

Beckham came off shortly after. He was recently drafted back into the England squad because of a number of high profile injuries to the squad and was scheduled to fly back to the UK that evening. His replacement was more athletic but could do little to stop the rampaging Thunder from mounting non-stop attacks. Mis-kicking in front of goal by Thunder players and the lucky graces of the Californian team’s keeper saved the professional side’s blushes.

1-1 at the end of regulation time. No extra-time. Surprising. Beckham still hanging around. Even more surprising. LA beat us on a penalty shoot-out. Not shocked at all. $22 for 5th row seats is an awesome deal. Yes. Beckham took off his jersey and was paraded around the field like an exotic animal. Pretty sick. All the little girls were up screaming his name and more girls were rushing back into the stadium seats snapping pics and yelling more. Chaotic. We left. Hehe. Oh and did I tell you beer was $10? Rip-off!





SI.com compares Beckham with dinosaurs

22 08 2007

… and comes to the conclusion that “T-rex could outrun English superstar” 😮

Up next – The world is not flat!

So a giant lumbering reptile is actually faster than a tiny human? You could’ve saved all those hours and money (jus buy me the Ultimate Whopper from BK) spent figuring if Mister Beckham could run faster than a dinosaur by just asking me. I’ll tell you straight forward – NO. Those clowns doing the research should have realized that David Beckham ain’t exactly the definition of FAST. There’s a reason why he’s only known for kicking a ball when everybody’s 50 ft away and for nothing else (and his looks sayz the ladies).