Results tagged ‘ china ’

Ni Hao from Beijing

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Hello, MLBloggers! Am over here at the Summer Olympics and back at the end of August, so hold down the fort while I’m away. Got here a couple of days before Opening Ceremony, am with the USA Baseball Team the whole way. So Wukesong Stadium is pretty much my office. What you notice most are the volunteers — about 100,000 kids mainly college-age, wearing the familiar uniforms with blue “Beijing 2000” tech shirts, khakis and yellow-striped running shoes. They are everywhere. My “Taxi Cards” are a lifeline — just show what you want/where you want to go, and each has Chinese lettering symbols on the card as well as my phonetic pronunciation. Gradually learning some Mandarin that I will forget in a few weeks, and yesterday spoke the universal language when I went on a 2-hour training run along Badaling Expressway and stopped 1:30 into the run to watch 5-on-5 hoops (basketball is huge here thanks to Yao) at a park. A man asked me if I want to play (he didn’t really ask, he gestured), and I said by all means I would love to with all my heart (I didn’t really speak, I gestured). They were great games and at the end I did a Cal Ripken lap around shaking every man’s hand. In that moment everything was perfect in the world, and we all spoke the same and believed in sports. You can find my coverage around the clock at MLB.com, as our “Baseball at the Olympics” writer over here. Keep the blogging going strong, and pardon the interruption in watching it all happen but I’m following a quest for the gold and seeing the sights. Remember to leave lots of comments here with your URL as another way for people to find your blog. I am looking forward to seeing the Men’s Marathon on the final day, I am still looking forward to a scrumptious Peking Duck, I still have to see the Great Wall and compare it to the Green Monster, and the two things that have struck me most are (a) how much BS the overblown hype about air pollution was as I am marathon training just fine in it, and (b) they actually grew ivy outside the building structure of Wukesong Field 2 because our friend Murray Cook told them about Wrigley ivy. By the way, get to know Murray — he’s one of our four original MLBloggers circa April 2005, and he is the person who created the baseball experience here in Beijing, turning a parking lot into Major League caliber ball fields and teaching people who didn’t know what “base” meant how to groundskeep. My BlackBerry has smoke coming out of it because of the constant updates from MLB clubs about their latest announcements as well as every USOC event update from Michael Phelps to pistol to rowing…and I am loving it. As they say here: “Bye-Bye” (I had a hard time learning that one).

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Going for Chinese food

Lots of you are blogging about Manny. Like Sarah and Ian and The Heirloom and Rob (VP of Red Sox Nation). Leave a comment here with your URL if you are doing likewise. Andre Ethier is not blogging about Manny. ‘Dre is blogging about food. Mark DeRosa is not blogging about Manny. The Pulse says to “Bring on the Brewers.”

Gibson is not blogging about Manny. Gibson is dreaming about October.

Meanwhile …

nǐ dài wǒ qù nǎlǐ? (where are you taking me?)

wǒ bèibǔle ma? (am i under arrest?)

wǒ xīwàng gēn lǜshī liánxì (i want to talk to a lawyer)

nǐ qīpiàn wǒ (you’re cheating me)

qǐng zàilái yìlún (another round, please)

Yes, your friendly neighborhood MLBlogs rancher is bound for Beijing next week and the Summer Olympics. I have never been on that side of the world. I have no prayer whatsoever of speaking Mandarin. Even if I could learn “useful phrases” I would have to master the five different “tonalities” and thus I risk asking for coke instead of a Coke and thus I should know those phrases above. Seriously, inasmuch as I am from Indiana and thus still learning my own language, I welcome any input.

I will be with the USA Baseball Team wherever they go for MLB.com and USABaseball.com, from the Wall to the pandas to the Opening/Closing ceremonies to the competition at Wukesong Stadium from Aug. 13-23. We’ll have one of the players blog here as well. So I anticipate many translators. But there will be times when I am winging it and that is when it will get interesting. I am basically going to carry a “playbook” around with me (printouts, manuals, whatever it takes) and point to stuff. I might never open my mouth there, except when I am gasping for air while training 30 miles a week in smog. I am sure I would do nothing but possibly wind up in a prison or something. And let’s hope the security is up to the task because I’m already tired of reading about terrorist plots.

Seriously, it is a great time of year and I can’t wait to be there for it. I don’t know about you, but I grew up with those McDonald’s cards that would give you a Big Mac for gold, fries for silver and a drink for bronze depending on what event is listed on the card. I grew up with Mark Spitz, Mary Lou Retton, Carl Lewis, Michael Johnson, and the voices of Jim McKay, Bob Costas, and that singular Olympiad music. I am looking forward to being around a team of players whose lives normally are a single-minded obsession of reaching a parent MLB roster, yet now focused on representing a nation. Next stop Beijing, next week…

Welcome to the proprietor of Brewing for Glory, who is ready for Crew vs. Cubs again. Welcome to Ever Ever After, who seems to have been touched by the October Gonzo spirit. (Did you vote on OG’s blog? Aaron Boone’s walk-off homer in 2003 is leading in the polling results as of this moment.) By the way, how do you like seeing MLBlogs.com on all of those incredible MLB national TV ad spots that started running at the All-Star Game? This community sure has come a long way in three years, folks.

Here are the highs of being a Blue Jays Fan

I am just guessing that Pinstriped Ponderings is not voting for McCain. I may be wrong. What do you think? “America’s most disgraced commander-in-chief” — blog author’s words. Hmmm, there have been some doozies. Jeff at Red State Blue State probably oughta weigh in on that MLBlog. One thing I definitely agree with is the comment about Jeff Samardzija. Watched him on the hill for the Cubs yesterday and this is Mark Prior II as far as Cub hysteria.

Welcome to Phillies #1, who is unfazed by a recent meltdown. Welcome to our own MLB.com Organizational Report, which — similar to Trade Talk — is maintained by 30 writers. … If you are a fan out West and you think East Coast Bias is a real thing, then why not start your own MLBlog? This person did. Sometimes I think I spend way too much of my personal time trying to debunk “East Coast Bias” mythology with reasoned replies. I can speak from personal experience on this one. I will write 15 consecutive articles for MLB.com that are teeming with references to Angels and A’s and other West Coast clubs, and if I write a 16th that fails to mention them (ie my Final Vote coverage last month, when there again were no nominees from the AL West), I get nastygrams saying I have East Coast Bias. Trust me, if you want to look like there is an L on your forehead, email MLB.com with a complaint that we have East Coast Bias. No other media entity sends 30 traveling beat writers out into the world with insane amounts of 24/7/365 coverage for all 30 clubs, regardless of W-L standings. But welcome anyway to West Coast Bias. … More MLBlogs traffic-stat fun in the next 24-48 hours!

Remember to leave lots of comments here and on other MLBlogs like OG’s WITH your URL so people can find you. Have fun!

…and here are the lows of being a Blue Jays Fan.

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