STUFF - Just some pictures I've taken since the games began

The Beach Volleyball venue, at Chaoyang Park. There's no water here, unless you count this fountain.

These are the Beach Girls, 12 cheerleaders that keep the crowd's attention between matches, at time-outs, and as shown here, before the first match.

Tonight (8/11) the first match is 'Pool E - Match 34', which is the other U.S. Women's Volleyball team, Nicole Branagh & Elaine Youngs (in the white cap above) vs. Germany. (Branagh & Youngs were eliminated in the quarterfinals on 8/17 agaist China.) Matches started at 6PM, and this evening's ticket went for 100 Yuan, about $15.

Before the evening's third matchup, Brasil vs. the Russian Federation, the a Olympic mascots make an appearance on the sand. Huanhuan's the red one, Yingying's the yellow one.

Wednesday night (8/13) inside the Bird's Nest they were rehearsing for Track & Field, which was to start 2 days later. Just 5 days ago this was the setting for the Opening Ceremonies. Remember how the floor lit up? Since then, they've completely redone the floor, bringing in truckloads of sod.

Because you can't do a rehearsal without people, Olympic volunteers are running mock races, and they even star in a mock medals ceremony, getting to see themselves on the stadium's giant screens.

I volunteered to be a mock commentator.

On to Men's Basketball. Thursday night August 14 the first game was the Men's Preliminary round Group B - Game 34, U.S. vs Greece. Here the teams line up after being introduced, in the Beijing Olympic Basketball Gymnasium.

This year's Men's Basketball team has been referred to as 'The Redeem Team', after the disappointing performance in Athens of the 2004 'Dream Team'.
Below, #9 Dwayne Wade puts one up for the U.S.

Cheers from the bench on another shot. On the court for the United States in white are (L-R) Carmelo Anthony, Dwayne Wade, Kobe Bryant, Chris Paul, and Lebron James.

Following the U.S. victory by a score of 92-69, Dwayne Wade pauses for a post-game interview with NBC's Craig Sager.

Just after the game, with NBC's Bruce Beck at the Beijing Olympic Basketball Gymnasium

A final shot at the gymnasium with Greg Aull, who's working on bringing you many of NBC's online feeds of the Olympics.

The Bird's Nest on a recent night.

A river runs through it. The Olympic Park, that is. It's a man-made river, which first had water pumped into it on summer 2007. Just north of the Bird's Nest is this dancing water display in the river, somewhat synchronized to music played over a P.A. system.

There's more than one Bird's Nest in the Olympic Green. Hundreds of these small lamps line the walks leading to the Olympic Stadium, each a replica of a bird's nest. The big Bird's Nest is behind me, lit in blue & red on the evening before opening ceremonies.

Within the Olympic Green, the Olympic sponsors have buildings to exhibit their products. China Mobile, one of the cell phone companies here has an interesting building. Check out the basketball player busting through the front of the building, and the guy on the cell phone coming out the side.


Johnson & Johnson's exhibit features five of the Terracotta Warriors. These life-size figures were discovered accidently in Xian, Shaanxi province, in 1974 when farmers were digging a well. They discovered the tomb of Qin Shi Huang, first emperor of the Qin dynasty, who died in 251 B.c. There are about 6000 figures in all, arranged by rank. The emperor was buried with these soldiers, who would guard him in his next life.

J&J's connection is a technology they have to fight mold, just one of the factors contributing to the deterioration of the figures.
These five have been brought to Beijing for this exhibit. Each is displayed in a glass case. The rest are still in Xian, and the partially excavated location has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Comms colleague Sean McKinnon took this picture (below) of the terracotta warriors in context. The mural is on one of the walls in the J&J pavillion.

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