Disclaimer: Due to aggressive copyright bots roaming the internet, I’m not sure how long these videos will stay up. In some cases, I’ve included hyperlinked stills from vids that I was able to find online, and in other cases, I’ve embedded my own recordings.
Day 8: Friday, July 30, 2021: Table Tennis Finals (Men’s Singles), Trampoline (Women’s), and more
TABLE TENNIS (TT): Men’s Singles Finals
Bronze medal match: LIN Yun-Ju (TPE) vs. Dimitrij OVTCHAROV (GER)
>Lin’s nickname is The Silent Assassin, so you know it’s on.
>I like that the German has to squat more to fit the table. I’m tired of the able-bodied talls getting everything optimized to their height. Every day, I contend with the height of my kitchen counters, my cabinets, my desk, my bathroom mirror. Imagine if able-bodied tall people had to squat or get on their hands and knees just to reach their cups and bowls, like how able-bodied short people have to use stools everywhere and climb on countertops and use extra tools and ask for help, to say nothing of those of us with mobility/accessibility issues. They would never make it! It’s like the ding-dongs who think Simone Biles is weak for taking herself out of multiple Olympic events; if they had to do what she does, they would never survive. (…jk, obviously, in the former situation, they would still survive, whereas in the latter, their bodies would literally be interred.)
>These dudes are very matched. But I’m bummed, because I really think Lin could’ve taken it all in the 6th game; it looked like he just mentally got too much in his head, and Ovtcharov kept saving each game point until he ended up evening the score out 3-3. So whoever wins the next game wins the whole thing. (Olympic TT rules are that whoever wins best of 7 games (ie 4 of 7 games) wins the whole match, and in each game, whoever reaches 11 points with a 2-point lead first, wins the game. In this case, 5 games in, Lin had won 3 games and Ovtcharov had won 2, meaning if Lin were to win the 6th game, he would win the whole match 4-2. What actually happened was that Lin reached 11 points before Ovtcharov did, but it was only with a 1-point lead. From there, they just kept going back and forth, until Ovtcharov gained the 2-point lead and won that game, thus tying them up 3-3.)
>Omg, so tense, must take break. Getting some water. Stress-slurping some lychee jelly. Texting the bestie.
>The tall won. …It’s ok. It was a tight match. Lin is still a teenager, and the tall is 32 years of age, so our boy still has time.
Gold/Silver medal match: MA Long (CHN) vs. FAN Zhendong (CHN)
>Both Ma and Fan look like they haven’t slept in years. I can’t imagine how stressful it must be to be a Chinese TT player carrying the expectations of billions of people and, not for nothing, the CCP. When the Chinese mixed doubles team lost to Japan in the gold medal match, they apologized for letting everyone down, which broke my heart. I wish China put less pressure on their athletes. They’re human beings with hearts and flaws; not apparatuses for others’ pride and enjoyment. And same goes for American media, who are so invested in pumping athletes up for a good story and ignoring the fact that they’re real people who need to know that they are valuable and loved regardless of their athletic achievements.
>Ma Long’s nicknames are “The Dictator” and “The Dragon” (which, the “long” in “Ma Long” is indeed the character for “dragon”–龙/龍), because he dominates the sport. That said, Fan Zhendong, the world-ranked number 1 at the time of this match, is also extremely 厉害, very 不得了 (fierce, not-to-fucked-with, incredible).
>The commentator said the words “spanks that ball,” and it’s got me wondering: what is the intersection of the kink community and the table tennis community? What does table tennis kink look like? No doubt it involves paddles and spanking. Maybe their ball gags are ping pong balls. Maybe they take turns “serving” each other. Makes you wonder.
>I have no words. Please just watch. (Click image or YouTube link below image.):
>Below is Ma’s immediate reaction after winning. Though I cringe at a title like “The Dictator” in the context of the PRC–a country that has suffered profoundly under dictators like Mao and Xi (though popular middle & upper class Chinese attitudes towards Xi are generally positive and point out how he’s increased quality of life and cracked down on corruption. I feel though, as an outsider who still cares a lot about where they come from, that his hyper-capitalist, Han supremacist, power hungry, Mao 2.0 ways are abhorrent)–independent of that, I will say: Respect to our non-dictatorial dictator:
In conclusion of the Men’s Singles Table Tennis Finals:
GOLD: MA Long 马龙, China (CHN)
SILVER: FAN Zhendong 樊振东, China (CHN)
BRONZE: Dmitrij OVTCHAROV, Germany (GER)
RUNNER-UP: LIN Yun-Ju 林昀儒, Taiwan (TPE—aka Chinese Taipei, which is Taiwan, but you know how it is with mainland China and their insistence that they own Taiwan)
TRAMPOLINE: Women’s Finals
>Ok, so this sport is like if artistic gymnastics–ie “regular gymnastics,” ie Suni & Simone’s sport–were only the floor event. No shade, but unfortunately, that is the analogy. (Click image or YouTube link below image.)
>Where my Chinese dance kids at? Remember these shoes?:
^that’s what these guys wear.
>China took the competition 1-2 (1st and 2nd place). Aunties and uncles rejoiced:
In conclusion of the Women’s Trampoline event:
GOLD: ZHU Xueying (CHN)
SILVER: LIU Lingling (CHN)
BRONZE: Bryony PAGE (GBR–Great Britain)
OTHER NOTABLE MOMENTS:
>With surfing added to the Olympics this year, Native Hawaiians have an important message: https://www.nbcnews.com/news/asian-america/team-hawaiian-kingdom-activists-want-us-olympians-surf-different-homel-rcna1503
>WOW, the Mixed Doubles Badminton gold medal match: https://www.nbcolympics.com/videos/chinas-best-teams-clash-mixed-doubles-badminton-gold
>American TT player Beiwen Zhang (not to be confused with another Chinese American TT player, Lily Zhang) had to forfeit her game because she re-injured her ankle. Damn, I feel for her: https://www.nbcolympics.com/news/us-badminton-player-beiwen-zhang-forced-forfeit-after-mid-match-injury