For the seventh consecutive year on Monday, the Chinese men's ping-pong team won the Swaythling Cup. (Apparently familiarity doesn't make the trophy any less awkward to handle.) It's the 19th time they've finished first at the World Table Tennis Championships, which was held this time in Tokyo. The Chinese women's team, not to be outdone, also won -- also its 19th team title at this worlds competition. The women have lost only twice since 1975.
The nunchucks are an unnecessary touch, turning a cheesy, goofily syncopated music video into a stupid Balls of Fire ripoff. Actually, this whole thing is stupid. So, so stupid.
It's unlikely you have time for 16 minutes of ping-pong, so start at the 7:30 mark, when the shenanigans begin. As Deadspin explains:
NBA star Kevin Garnett was in China last month to promote his new Anta shoe, the KG III, and it appears that his itinerary included a trip to the set of The Generation Show《年代秀》. He was joined in the studio that day by another major star athlete in China, ping-pong world champion Wang Hao. Naturally, the two played a rally. Naturally, Wang Hao used his off-hand, and still had to take it extra easy on the Boston power forward. And naturally, Wang Hao won the point. (This episode just aired on Friday.)
I don't have anything to say about this, really, except that I like it. Look at the concentration on the man's face. Look at his smile when the ball finally falls off his paddle, and his alacrity to try again, that very moment. This, young'uns, is how grown-ups entertain themselves when they don't have iPhone or iPad Apps. Isn't it better?
Since becoming an Olympic discipline in 1988, China has won 23 of the 27 possible gold medals in ping pong, and it’ll probably be 24 of 28 after tonight when the heavily favored team of Zhang Jike, Wang Hao and Ma Long gets done with Japan South Korea in the men’s team final, which begins at 10:30... Read more »
Kate Middleton visited Bacon’s College in Rotherhithe in southeast London yesterday to do some Olympics-related promotion, and — because why not? — engaged in some good ol’ table tennis. Her Royal Highness proved most excellent. Good on you, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge. (H/T Alicia) Youku video for those in China after the jump. Buzzfeed is also on... Read more »
At one point in this preview, 100-year-old Aussie Dorothy DeLow is interviewed in English by someone who sounds Chinese. "Why are you participating in this competition?" comes the question. DeLow grunts. “You're so old!" the questioner adds.
Without missing a beat, Dot replies, "I'm not that old."
His name is Xue Di, and according to the Providence Journal, he is a dissident Chinese poet who has been "the league champion at the Rhode Island Table Tennis Association in Manville" for 10 straight years.
How do we start listing the ways in which this is awesome? With his voice, which rises a few octaves when he gets excited? With the fact that this video is entirely about ping pong?