Aug 08

The 29th Olympics of the modern era is officially under way.

Chinese President Hu Jintao declared the Games open just after 1630 BST during a spectacular ceremony inside Beijing’s Bird’s Nest stadium.

Some 90,000 spectators gathered to see the extravaganza.

And a worldwide audience of up to four billion was watching the event on television.

A colourful, tightly-choreographed hour-long opening show portrayed China’s colourful history from ancient dynasties to modern superpower.

The parade of over 10,000 athletes was the culmination of a spectacular ceremony which saw the the Games of the XXIX Olympiad launched in stunning fashion.

Earlier, a burst of multi-coloured fireworks lit up the skyline around Beijing to herald the start of the ceremony.

“Friends have come from afar, how happy we are,” thousands of drummers chanted before the fireworks were set off.

Drumming up interest: Performers in the opening ceremony

At 8:08 and eight seconds local time, on the 8-8-2008 (can you guess China’s lucky number?), a mighty barrage of fireworks (made in China presumably) signalled the start of the spectacular showpiece in the Bird’s Nest stadium.

In a display which owed more to a CGI Hollywood blockbuster than a sporting event the 90,000 spectators were treated to battalions of performers drumming on what appeared to be thousands of coffee tables with new-rave lightsticks.

The iconic Olympic Rings, made up of thousands of fairylights, were suspended above the in-field before a tiny schoolgirl sang the Chinese national anthem before a few more thousand kilos of gunpowder lit up the night sky.

Times table: The drummers were a spectacular sight

The spectacular continued with 29 giant firework ‘footprints’ – representing the number of modern Olympic Games – from the centre of Beijing to the stadium.

Later the teams carried their flags into the stadium – with the British no doubt already wondering how the hell they are going to top this in London in 2012.

Taking flight: The Olympic Rings rose above the stadium

The sheer scale of the ceremony – a total of 10,300 performers took part – must have made it a daunting sight for the observers from the London 2012 organising committee.

The cost of the event must have been staggering, too, but the Chinese authorities have refused to say what the total bill for the opening ceremony is.


Making an entrance: Team GB enter the stadium



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Jun 04

Big Brother 9 Chair

THE new UK Big Brother 9 Diary Room chair could be from Doctor Who.

The huge seat has a special wipe-clean silver surface – perfect for mopping up rivers of housemates’ tears.

BB creative director Sharon Powers said the new Room is “very futuristic”.

Related Post:
BIG BROTHER 9 start date confirmed: 5th June
UK Big Brother 9 mad House Unveiled

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May 25

1. Russia: Dima Bilan – “Believe”

2. Ukraine: Ani Lorak – “Shady Lady”

3. Greece: Kalomira – “Secret Combination”

4. Armenia: Sirusho – “Qele Qele” (Come on, come on)

5. Norway: Maria – “Hold On Be Strong”

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May 25

Congrats to Russia and Dima Bilan!
Here is the winners for the 53rd edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, which was hosted by Serbia.

Ruslan Alehno (Belarus) and Dima Bilan (Russia) – Eurovision 2008

Ruslan Alehno (Belarus) and Dima Bilan (Russia) – Eurovision 2008
???……I think it’s noisy there and Dima tries to tell something to Ruslan… but it looks like something else…

More Photo Click here:

More Eurovision:

Eurovision Song Contest 2008 Final Top 5 (videos)


Eurovision Song Contest Belgrade 2008 Final Tonight

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May 24


Location Serbia
Host Broadcaster RTS
Venue Belgrade Arena
Participants 25
Voting method Citizens of each country vote by telephone or SMS. The country’s 10 favourites are awarded 12, 10, then 8 through 1 points based on votes. All 45 countries present their awarded points, totalling to determine the winner.
EBU Scrutineer Svante Stockselius
Executive Producer Sandra Šuša
United KingdomThe contest will be screened tonite from 8pm to 11.15pm on BBC1. Britain’s hope Andy Abraham was gearing up for the 53rd Eurovision Song Contest today.
Abraham, 43, the former binman who made his name on the X Factor, will be hoping his song, Even If, does better than last year’s British entry. 

Bookmakers have dubbed Abraham the UK’s worst ever entrant, with odds of 66-1 to win, which it says is its worst ever.
Wogan recently said Abraham’s song was “the best UK entry for a while”. But he added: “If we finish nowhere again, I worry that disenchantment might take hold. “Eurovision is such silly fun, and I love doing it, but if the enthusiasm isn’t there… “This year is pretty crucial for me. Eurovision without Royaume-Uni would be unfortunate.”
Eurovision has become known for bad taste in music, bizarre performances and political voting.

But the Danish director of Eurovision TV, the Swiss-based company which produces the competition, complained that Wogan does not treat the show with enough respect.

Bjorn Erichsen suggested that Wogan’s wry observations were making Eurovision look “ridiculous”.

He said earlier this month: “Terry Wogan is a problem because he makes it ridiculous. I know he is very popular, and maybe that is the reason why a lot of people watch. But one day he will have to retire and the BBC will have to find someone else.

“It will be interesting to see if that attitude changes.”

—- From LondonPaper


We’re not supposed to laugh at Eurovision anymore. But…

Andy Abraham, the UK entry, God help us all…

Sebastien Tellier of France. He is this year’s ‘cool’ entrant. You can tell this because he looks like a tramp.

Some kind of GMTV/10,000 BC hybrid from Estonia’s Kreisiraadio.

Azerbaijan’s Elnur & Samir. Cannot WAIT for this lot – they are clearly all bonkers.

Ireland’s eliminated entry, Dustin the Turkey. WTF! ..Er, are those Aztecs?

Maria of Norway. Nice dress, shame about the five pounds of lip gloss.

Sirusho of Armenia actually looking rather good. How annoyingly un-Eurovision of her.

Dima Bilan of Russia looking pleasingly horrendous.

Hind of The Netherlands taking cues from Bucks Fizz

Now-obligatory Finnish death metal courtesy of Terasbetoni. The flames!

The frankly terrifying Laka of Bosnia & Herzegovina. And we thought Eurobeat was a parody…

Laka of Bosnia & Herzegovina

None-more-orange Isis Gee of Poland waving to her make-up artist

Isis Gee of Poland, presumably recreating Splash

Rebeka Dremelj of Slovenia making bold fashion choices

Dustin the Turkey. Are we surprised he didn’t get through? Bless.

Is that Philip Schofield? No, it’s Elnur & Samir of Azerbaijan

Elnur & Samir of Azerbaijan. Clearly insane. Cannot wait.

Philip Schofield going bonkers. Oh hang on, it’s Elnur & Samir of Azerbaijan

Blazin’ Squad? No, Boaz of Israel

Ishtar of Belgium, channelling a Chupa Chups lollipop

It’s a human hanging basket! Dancers perform during the opening ceremony of the semi-finals

Kalomira of Greece presumably took inspiration from a football match

Faux Shakira! It’s Gissela of Andora

Sham on Ireland again!!

Another faux Shakira! Kalomira of Greece

Tereza Kerndlova of Czech Republic. We’ll look that good in hotpants one day, but we probs won’t go on Eurovision


More Eurovision:

Eurovision Song Contest 2008 Final Top 5 (videos)

Dima Bilan — The winner of THE 2008 EUROVISION SONG CONTEST (Photos)


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May 05

Meet the UK’s new TV Gladiators!!!

YouTube Preview Image


 Sky One I Gladiators Ready, Exclusive pre-view

 YouTube Preview Image

Sky One | Gladiators Ready! New UK Series (May 2008)

YouTube Preview Image

Meet Tempest!

YouTube Preview Image

Meet Spartan!

YouTube Preview Image

Meet Inferno!

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Meet Oblivion!

YouTube Preview Image

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Apr 19

Robot completes Marathon – six days late – almost 120 hours after setting off.

Fundraiser Lloyd Scott, who was inside the 9ft 3” costume, crossed the finishing line in the Mall just before 9am this morning where he was greeted by England and Wasps rugby player James Haskell.

Exhausted after spending almost five days walking on specially built stilts inside the 70lb costume, Scott said: “I’m really pleased to have reached the finishing line and am really grateful to the people of London who have supported me ever step of the way.

“The fact that the London Marathon can accommodate the world’s elite runners and charity fundraisers like me means it’s the best in the world.”

Scott, 46, from Rainham, Essex, raised more than £20,000 for the Autism Trust.

He added: “I chose the robot outfit because there is a view that people with autism live this robotic existence but actually they can flourish with a little bit of help.”

And despite earning a well-deserved rest, the father-of-three is already planning his next charity raising stunt.

He said: “My calves are screaming in agony because no matter how much you train, nothing prepares you for covering 26 miles on stilts dressed as a robot.

“I might do a few half marathons in the costume and then next year we’re planning something really big which involves a dinosaur so watch this space.”

The former firefighter and leukaemia slept in fire stations en route during the walk.

He has raised more than £5 million for charity through various fundraising challenges including completing the London and New York marathons wearing a deep sea diving suit, an underwater marathon in Loch Ness and cycling from Perth to Sydney on a Penny Farthing.

To donate go to

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Apr 13

Watch Video Here: Meet the UK’s new TV Gladiators!!!

gladiators uk 2008

The 12 new bicep-bulging Gladiators wearing their uniform Lycra have been unveiled ahead of their appearance in the revamped TV series.
Battleaxe, Destroyer, Inferno, and Predator are among the fighting machines who will make their show debut next month.
At its peak, Gladiators, broadcast from 1992 to 2000, drew audiences of 14 million to its Saturday evening ITV slot with characters such as Trojan, Jet, Nightshade and Hunter becoming household names.
Richard Woolfe, Sky One director of programming, said: “The games are bigger, the contenders are stronger and the Gladiators are even more unbelievable.
“We’ve found extraordinary characters. It’s a colossus of a programme and it’s going to blow people’s socks off.”
Presenters Ian Wright and Kirsty Gallacher are the new John Fashanu and Ulrika Jonsson, while original referee John Anderson returns.
Producers have whittled down 20,000 hopefuls to 32 contenders who will take on the Gladiators in challenges such as Duel, Powerball, Hang Tough and The Eliminator for the £50,000 prize.

gladiator gladiator
The new presenters are Kirsty Gallacher and Ian Wright while original referee John Anderson (centre) returns

The Gladiators are:

1: OBLIVION – Nicholas Aldis, 21, Norwich – “Leaves nothing in his path – extinguishes his opposition.”

2: BATTLEAXE – Shirley Webb, 26, Edinburgh – “A weapon of war, domineering, aggressive and indomitable. Battleaxe is a warrior queen.”

3: ATLAS – Sam Bond, 24, Bournemouth – “As strong as He-Man, fights hard and with dignity.”

4: ENIGMA – Jenny Pacey, 25, Borehamwood – “Mysterious and beautiful, contradictory and unpredictable, impossible to capture.”

5: PANTHER – Kara Nwidobie, 26, Morecambe – “Beautiful, sleek, aggressive and powerful. Panther is the strongest and fiercest of the wild cats.”

6: TEMPEST – Lucy Boggis, 19, Quintin, Wiltshire – “Naturally beautiful, a force of nature bringing furious agitation and commotion.”

7: TORNADO – David McIntosh, 22, Altrincham – “Violently destructive windstorm full of unstoppable energy – leaves you in a spin.”

8: ICE – Caroline Pearce, 27, Cambridge – “Cold, steely, frosty and beautiful.”

9: PREDATOR – Du’aine Ladejo, 36, Newark – “Volatile, quick and poisonous, hunts down prey and takes no prisoners.

10: INFERNO – Jemma Palmer, 24, Tamworth – “Hot, fiery, dangerous and destructive.”

11: SPARTAN – Roderick Bradley, 24, Grantham -“Handsome, disciplined and brave. Will take on any army – the perfect warrior.”

12: DESTROYER Damar Martin, 38, Croydon – “Determined and strong, angry and unstoppable – nothing gets in his way.”

So what do you think of the new Gladiators? And how do they stack up against the original British gladiators, such as Rhino, Wolf, Jet, Hunter and Shadow?

And more importantly: if you were a gladiator, what would you be called?

Watch Video Here: Meet the UK’s new TV Gladiators!!!

From: :

1.30pm – Sky One put on a very impressive, and expensive, press launch for the show in east London this morning on a mini Gladiators arena.

Sky One controller Richard Woolfe, ever the showman, appeared out of a mist of dry ice to a raging cry of “Woolfe ready!” Unfortunately, he was not wearing spandex, although he was carrying a large pugil stick.

Each gladiator was then introduced to banging music, pyrotechnics and bursts of very hot fire which nearly took out the guy who does those videos on Holy Moly!

As each gladiator came on, they tried to look as fierce as possible and then did their special “move”.

Here are some of my notes:

Destroyer – “Can barely walk because of huge thighs.”

Atlas – “Extremely big. Shaved chest.”

Spartan – “Comes on to extremely camp music.”

Battleaxe – “A look of fear in her eyes.”

I think I slightly upset Battleaxe when I asked her how she felt about picking the short straw when it came to names. “It is growing on me,” she said, putting a brave face on things.

Atlas is definitely lining up to be the big head of the group (which is ironic, given that his head looks pretty small compared to his huge body). The Hunter look-a-like told us: “Every man trembles in my wake. I will be following on from Hunter in my performance. Hunter was the best. I hope to perform as well as him.”

Tornado is in the Royal Marines and has been given six months off to do the show. He admits it will be good publicity for the military and is planning to return to the forces after the show.

More random stuff – the gladiators were only allowed to tell their nearest and dearest today that they were going to be on the show after being sworn to secrecy; they didn’t choose their names themselves but were told what they would be called; they were each randomly drug tested before being chosen for the show and will be given surprise tests throughout the series (so if one suddenly disappears we will know why).

Some of the gladiators are so huge that my whole body could fit into one of their thighs – and I’m thinking of Destroyer here who, despite being the oldest (and he wasn’t too happy about me asking about that), is also the biggest.

Watch Video Here: Meet the UK’s new TV Gladiators!!!

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Mar 24

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The image and look of the Beijing Olympic torch relay was released at the Beijing Olympic Media Center.

The Torch Relay Graphic of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games

The Torch Relay Graphic


Torch Design


         A general view of the torch          3D animation

The Beijing Olympic Torch boasts strong Chinese characteristics, and showcases Chinese design and technical capabilities. It embodies the concepts of a Green Olympics, a High-tech Olympics and the People’s Olympics.

The Key Facts about the Torch

The torch is 72 centimetres high, weighs 985 grams and is made of aluminium. The torch is of a curved surface form, with etching and anodizing being used during its production. A torch can usually keep burning for approximately 15 minutes in conditions where the flame is 25 to 30 centimetres high in a windless environment. The torch has been produced to withstand winds of up to 65 kilometres per hour and to stay alight in rain up to 50mm an hour. The flame can be identified and photographed in sunshine and areas of extreme brightness. The fuel is propane which is in accordance with environmental guidelines. The material of its form is recyclable.

The Artistic and Technical Features of the Torch

The torch of the Beijing Olympic Games has a very strong Chinese flavour. It demonstrates the artistic and technical level of China. It also conveys the message of a Green Olympics, a High-tech Olympics and the People’s Olympics. The shape of the paper scroll and the lucky clouds graphic, expresses the idea of harmony. Its stable burning technique and adaptability to the environment have reached a new technical level. The torch of the Beijing Olympic Games is designed, researched and produced in China. BOCOG owns all intellectual property rights.

The Fuel for the Torch

Under the concept of a Green Olympics, environmental protection was a key element listed in the invitation documents to the design companies, by BOCOG. The fuel of the torch is propane, which is a common fuel which also comes with a low price. It is composed of carbon and hydrogen. No material, except carbon dioxide and water remain after the burning, eliminating any risk of pollution.

The Burning System

Its stable burning technique and adaptability to the environment have reached a new technical level. It can stay alight in severe weather conditions such as strong wind, rain, snow, hail, etc. The flame can also be identified in sunshine and areas of extreme brightness so as to satisfy the requirements of capturing photographic images and video footage.

The obverse side
The obverse side
The middle part
The middle part
The upper part
The upper part
The lower part
The lower part

The Design Timelines

2005 August            BOCOG developed the design concepts and requirements of the torch.

2005 December       BOCOG recruited potential torch designs from the design society. In total, BOCOG received 388 pieces of works.

2006 June-August    BOCOG selected the structural designer and the burning system designer.

2007 January          Beijing Olympic Torch was approved by IOC


Lantern Design

The lantern

The Torch Relay lantern will be used to store the Olympic flame. Its main purposes will be to receive the Olympic flame kindled in Olympia, to light the Olympic torch and to exhibit the sacred flame.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) requires the flame remain lit during the entire course of the Torch Relay in order to protect the sanctity of the Olympic flame and the purity of the Torch Relay. If the torch flame should be extinguished, it must be relit using the mother flame stored in the lantern. This is to ensure that the flame used to light the Olympic cauldron at the Opening Ceremony comes from the sacred Olympic flame kindled in Olympia.

The inspiration for the original design of the Beijing Olympic Torch Relay lantern comes from the traditional lanterns used inside ancient Chinese palaces. The silver luster of the lantern coupled with crystal-clear glass serve as a foil to the flame and communicates the Olympic flame’s sanctity and purity.


Cauldron Design

The Cauldron

The Olympic cauldron plays a major role in the Olympic Torch Relay. The lighting of the Olympic cauldron symbolizes the end of the Olympic Torch Relay and the beginning of the Olympic celebration.The Beijing Olympic cauldron is based on the concept of a “round heaven and square earth” and takes after a typical cauldron from the Chinese Bronze Age. The cauldron shares with the torch and lantern the design element of the “lucky cloud.”

The 56 “lucky clouds” hollowed out of the curved plate of the Olympic cauldron symbolize well wishes to the world from the 56 ethnic groups in China. The base of the cauldron has four legs with eight faces, symbolizing that the Beijing Olympic Games welcomes friends from all directions across the world. The Olympic cauldron stands 130 centimeters high, symbolizing the 130-day duration of the Beijing Olympic Torch Relay. The cauldron plate is 29 centimeters deep, symbolizing the 29th Olympiad. The cauldron post is 112 centimeters tall, symbolizing the 112 years that have passed between the staging of the first modern Olympic Games in 1896 and the 2008 Olympic Games.

Torch Stand Design

The Torch Stand

The torch stand is used to display and support the torch, and its design borrows from the architectural styles of the Han and Tang dynasties. The base design of the torch stand shows “lucky clouds” drifting away, as if gently calling out to the torch.


Uniform Design

Design of the torchbearer uniform for the Torch Relay
uniforms for the Torch Relay

Design of the escort runner uniform for the Torch Relay
escort runner uniform

Design of the escort staff uniform for the Torch Relay
escort staff uniform


The Convoy




The Aircraft

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