staying with the delightful Chinese government, there was a statement by john o'shea, the head of Goal, recently that irish viewers, as a protest agaisnt the dictatorial regime, should change the channel when the Olympics come on in the summer. an interesting and laudable idea. but one suspects the average sporting fan would have been set a more taxing test of his/her conscience if the football world cup was being held in china. in a previous age, when two men and a dog watched the munster rugby team ( bar the '78 clash against the all blacks which enticed 400,000 to thomand park ) and there was 7 or 8 live soccer matches on the telly annually, the olympics held us in thrall.
back then there was an exotic delight in synchronised swimming & power-lifting ( what a man; what a jerk ) as a diversion from Landmark or Feach, which was on THE OTHER CHANNEL. now i suspect, people are as interested in Man. Utd's pre-season trip to the Orient ( probably not china this year ) as they are in which east african wins the 5000 metres, or which sprinter with west african blood wins at the minimum distance.