Thursday, August 23, 2007

Reflections During a Lazy Afternoon in the Hotel Room

Elaina took a good long nap, and now we're playing in the room until a group dinner. A few thoughts, based on our observations.

1. Chinese sitcoms have the least convincing laugh tracks ever. They sound like they're getting people to laugh by threatening their children with cattle prods or something.

2. Apparently there is an entire genre of Chinese soap opera in which no words are spoken. People just come into and out of the room and react dramatically in close-ups. Do they have to pay them by the line?

3. Bad movies on HBO are not improved by Chinese subtitles.

4. There is a sharks vs. jets fight of kites over the man-made lake behind the hotel, but usually it is impossible to see from where the kites are being flown. They seem so high. I know the Chinese are to kite-flying what Americans are to supersizing their fries and running over people in SUVs, but still. Is someone flying these things from the roofs of apartment buildings? And they can do impressive tricks -- usually. I saw one kite crash into the lake and then get dragged ignominiously through the water back to shore. It made its way with little embarrassed tugs.