Life as seen by Jason A. Rice. China based photographer.

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Wuhan Institute of Physical Education

WIPE main entrance guardian.

WIPE main entrance guardian.

This time last year I was spending my time at the Wuhan Institute of Physical Education.  The fairly large university (7,000+ students) located in the capitol city of Hubei Province, China is dedicated to sports training and sports education.  Students can major in basketball, ping-pong, dance, journalism, business, English and many other fields.  The majority of the students study sports which makes for a pocket of larger sized Chinese.  I can walk around Wuhan and be noticeably taller than most people, but here on campus I comfortably fit in with the sizable student body.  The school is also host to China’s national rowing team and some young gymnasts in training.  Let me tell you, these guys are all about quantity when it comes to training.  The crew team is up with the sun and trains all day.  Even the “universities basketball team” (which I cannot really figure out because they never play other teams, only inter-squad) runs and scrimmages all day.  From my viewpoint they could really conduct a more effective and efficient practice, but I understand this is the way they like to do it China.  In all sports in all levels, the theory is to get better you just train harder, not necessarily smarter.  Obviously it has produced some good results in international competition (the school has training many Olympic gold metal winner, including Yang Wei) but it seems there are better ways.  It was interesting to see how vastly different their basketball practices are compared to what I remember.  In China the team practices together instead of doing individual drills.  Most drills just seem to be a type of war of attrition, running up and down the court until you are completely exhausted.  General wisdom would say this actually produces and practices poor technique, as the athletes tire,  but they seem to just bulldog through it.

Anyway, I had fun playing basketball with the students and by the end of my time there I was getting my game senses back and was able to shoot a little better (it had probably been about eight years since I played a game before coming to China) and they taught me a fair amount of Chinese profanities.   At the beginning of summer I filmed a walking tour of campus, which I will attach below.  The video is way too long for one download so I cut them into three segments.  I know the camera is really shaky and not the best quality, but it might be interesting to some of you to see the campus of a Chinese sports university.  It has only been a few months since this video was shot, but by the time you view it the campus will have changed a lot.  That is the way things are in Chinese cities nowadays.  Cranes are up everywhere and the old cities are being erased while a new image is being penciled in its place.

Can you see these videos?  Leave me a comment, I think there might be a problem.

Here is the Youku version (not as high resolution) because YouTube does not like my music choice and has disabled the audio.

HERE is a link to Part 2 of 3 Youku version for all you Chinese viewers without access to Youtube.

HERE is a link to Part 3 of 3 Youku version for all you Chinese viewers without access to Youtube.

And some photos.

The morning view from the pedestrian bridge just outside the west gate of Wuhan Institute of Physical Education.

The morning view from the pedestrian bridge just outside the west gate of Wuhan Institute of Physical Education.

Cranes building a new stadium to host the national Mind Games (chess and such).  Hope that the students will actually be able to use it and play basketball.  The old courts are generally over crowded and not in the best of condition.

Cranes building a new stadium to host the national Mind Games (chess and such). Hope that the students will actually be able to use it and play basketball. The old courts are generally over crowded and not in the best of condition.

The outside portion of the basketball courts on campus (as referenced in the above caption).  When school is in session the courts are always jammed, unless it is shower/dinner time (yep, students need to show betwen 4-7).  The inside, let me just say covered, courts are in a little better shape but not much.  What I like about basketball in China is that students do not care how cold it is they will come a play in jeans and sweats when the snow is falling outside and you can see your breathe inside.

The outside portion of the basketball courts on campus (as referenced in the above caption). When school is in session the courts are always jammed, unless it is shower/dinner time (yep, students need to show betwen 4-7). The "inside", let me just say covered, courts are in a little better shape but not much. What I like about basketball in China is that students do not care how cold it is they will come a play in jeans and sweats when the snow is falling outside and you can see your breathe inside.

The combat house at WIPE.  Here they practice everything from boxing to dragon dancing.  Some say the archetecture is to resemble the shape of a fist, I dont see it.

The combat house at WIPE. Here they practice everything from boxing to dragon dancing. Some say the architecture is to resemble the shape of a fist, I don't see it.

Ask any student or faculty to give you a list of three things to know about WIPE and I guarantee they tell you Yang Wei trained here.  So to momortalize him they put him up on the WIPE Wall of Fame.

Ask any student or faculty to give you a list of three things to know about WIPE and I guarantee they tell you Yang Wei trained here. So to memorialize him they put him up on the WIPE Wall of Fame.

Centrally located and even glowing at night, the administration building.

Centrally located and even glowing at night, the administration building.


Signing Off as Director of Endurance Events

Some days just feel like a Buster Martin.

Some days just feel like a Buster Martin.

As mentioned a few posts ago, this week ends my tenure as the Director of Endurance Events with Anthony Travel.  Below is my signing off email to my fellow ATIers.  Some of you reading may very well be former Anthony Travel coworkers… think of this as an OTL or a HAGA.  Others may be a part of my extended Anthony Travel family, who without my step through Anthony Travel I would never have met.  Buster Martin… you are one of those.  Amazing men and women you all are.  So I thought I would share the encapsulated memories present in this email to those not on the Anthony Travel distribution list.
For those of you who usually contact me via my Anthony Travel address please be sure to update your address book.  In my new role as Independent Contractor and Consultant I will maintain my personal email addresses as primary forms of communication, no Anthony Travel email.
When I return to Texas next week, we (Stephana, Steve and I) will be hosting a going away / birthday party in Dallas around September 11th.  Be on the lookout for the invite.  I think there are some birthdays other than mine that we need to celebrate too (yes that means you Tracy.  Get out from under that LSAT book and 做生日).  If you don’t get the invite hit me up with an email and I will send it along to you.
恭喜发财!
Comrades.
Today I consider myself a lucky man.  I am able to cast hindsight on a great 6+ years that has had it’s share of ups and downs, twists and turns, yings and yangs, hands and feets, rooms and dorms, Pittsburghs and New York Cities, wins and losses, oils and vinegars, Yuenglings and McSorleys, cities and beaches, David Whites and Anne Cribbs, Water Polos and New York Road Runners, fitness breads and vienna sausages, green drinks and oatmeals, bubble teas and red bean ice creams, huddles and summits, Park Lanes and Belt Line Roads, NAIAs and charter planes, Napoleon Dynamites and red union suits, Police Concerts and Navy Bowl New Year’s Eve cruises, Texases and Mexicos, cancellation fees and dollar wills, red carpet walkways and holey jeans, Westins and motor lodges, chipped tooths and squeaky achilles, beards and mustaches, 5Ks and Ironmans, yingwens and zhongwens, whose there and who’s whoms, etcs and etcs.  And through it all I can look back and say we had a good time.  So I thank you for the experiences and the friendships you’ve given me.

I am thinking about having a little get together (going away and birthday soirée) here in Dallas sometime around September 11th.  So keep your calendar open and be on the lookout for a more formal invite and event details.  To those who I will not see again, I wish you the best.

Today is my last day in the office and Monday is my last day with an Anthony Travel email address.  But you can always find me at www.JARofphotos.com and places in between.  See you there.
Viva the life you love.
Love the life you live.
Jason A. Rice
Director of Endurance Events
Anthony Travel, Inc.
7920 Belt Line Road, Suite 1010
Dallas, TX 75254
(P) 214.363.0073
(F) 214.363.1180
skype: jasonArice
Endurance Team: VivaResolution.net
Anthony Travel: www.anthonytravel.com


National Senior Olympics

Yes five medals for this 93 year old.

Yes five medals for this 93 year old.

Meet my friend Charles Ross.  This is one of our buddies from the 2009 National Senior Games in Palo Alto, CA.  This fella would come by our booth everyday.  When you asked him how he was doing he’d reply with a whooping “I’mmmmm grrrrreeeaaat!” while making a hooked arm motion to exclaim the point.  In other words he was awesome.  Some of my co-workers asked him to take a picture with them.  But he did not have his medals with him and would not take a photo without his medals.  The next day he would returned with medals in tow.  You could hear them clanking down the sidewalk from half a mile away.  With all this weight around his neck and the medals dangling at his pulled up belt he could barely hook swing his arms while declaring “I’mmmmm grrrrreeeaaat!”.

Charles is one of the many amazing individuals who participate in the Senior Olympics.  The Games are full of these characters.  One minute they will be cursing me straight out of a Charles Dickens book the next showering me with invitations to date their granddaughters.  Roger Gentilhomme was another of those characters.  100 years old and still out on the tennis courts.  He was a Senior Games celebrity… stopping for pictures with all the ladies.

If you want to find inspiration in life there are many places to look.  One of the best places I’ve found is the National Senior Olympics.

In the evenings I would go for a run around Stanford University in the shadows of their achievements.  It’s good to keep that kind of company.