Songs, Jokes Mock Olympic Failures

August 15, 2008 8:16 pm Last Updated: October 1, 2015 10:54 pm

Chinese residents gather around to watch the Beijing Olympics in Beijing.  (Goh Chai Hin/AFP/Getty Images)
Chinese residents gather around to watch the Beijing Olympics in Beijing. (Goh Chai Hin/AFP/Getty Images)
Mainland Chinese are taking out their anger over Olympic restrictions, burdens, and failures in the form of jokes and song parodies.

The United Morning Post (Lianzhe Zaobao) from Taiwan Zhongguang news bulletin reports that the Chinese are inventing and passing around a whole new score of songs and jokes poking fun at the troublesome restrictions and security measures taken for the Olympics.

The Olympic Red Guard security has attracted unprecedented media attention, perhaps more than the sporting events themselves, and some Chinese are not holding back on the ridicule.

In a clear departure from parroting the communist “Party line,” the parodies are popping up on the internet, in emails and cellphone text messages and are inspiring a whole movement. A movement nowhere to be seen on the strictly monitored official media.

For example, the Beijing Olympics’ theme song "You and Me" sings about peace and friendship. It is dubbed now and sung as “Oil and Rice” as “you” (油) sounds like “oil” and “me” (米) like “rice” in Chinese.

Chinese people are expressing their worries over the escalating costs of basic commodities such as gas and food, says United Morning Post. Singing “You and Me” reflects a bit of the Chinese internet users’ sense of humor about the rapid rising prices.

Additionally, a new version of the song “Beijing Welcomes You” has appeared on the internet. The reinvention makes fun of the fact that the Chinese Mainland soccer team did not make it to the next World Cup. While the original version goes, "Beijing welcomes you, the door to my house is often open, and my open embrace waits for you," the new version mocks, "Beijing welcomes you, our stadium gate is often open, and as many [matches] as there are, we'll still lose."

Cell phone text messages are also being used to joke in secret about the Olympics. Because of all the extreme restrictions and measures taken to guarantee a “smooth Olympics," a lot of Chinese have suffered and sacrificed involuntarily. As a consequence people jokingly refer to the Olympics as "E Yun," (厄運) meaning bad luck in Chinese, instead of "Ao Yun," (奧運) which means Olympics.  

False rumors have spread that to thank the contributions that China has made to this year’s Olympics, the president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Jacques Rogge has declared that Beijing will host the next Olympics as well.