Jason Simms continues his reporting on the games outside the Games in Beijing (read earlier dispatches and watch videos here
The mission of the English, baby Olympic team was to travel to Beijing and challenge those we met in competition. We didn't count on those we met challenging us.
Outside the water cube, we discovered a large Chinese man putting on a show. He rotated metal balls of increasing size in his hands until the balls got so big that one of them rested on his arm. We thought it was a show, but it turned out it was a challenge.
Jewel, the only person with us who knows Chinese, said that he was challenging the audience to his game. Naturally, I suited up and accepted the challenge.
Afterward, I talked to Superman of the Metal Balls (I wonder if the innuendo is there in Chinese) and found out that he doesn't even take tips—this is just his way of being a part of the Olympic spirit. It's his dream to challenge an official Olympic athlete. The gold we awarded him was his first.