- John Pomfret, former Beijing bureau chief of the Washington Post, weighs in on why China will remain a "muscle-bound adolescent" rather than develop into a superpower.
- Pole dancing is gaining traction in China, despite the built-in barriers. Check out the video, too.
- Everything you need to know about China? You decide.
- The Pew survey everyone's been linking to.
- Even for the Chinese, 150 cm is very short.
- Ignore the title of this article, because the protest these Nigerian athletes are planning has little to do with Beijing but because "were not happy with the shoddy treatment they alleged the National Sports Commission (NSC) meted out to them and as such, according to them, 'want the whole world to know what we passed through before coming to the games'." Interesting. So the Olympics are being politicized by neutral parties as well.
- Lead: "Beijing has set up a sex determination lab to test female Olympic athletes suspected to be males." Read more.
- Sports Illustrated's Olympic preview issue, which always wins some national magazine award, is coming out this week. Check out Alexander Wolff/Richard Deitsch's essay on these Olympics.
- TBJ: Changes around Beijing.
- New Yorker: China's neocons (best article about China I've read this year).
- Oops. (It's about Tiananmen, late-80s-ish.)
- Beijing hutongs and the modern siheyuan.
And finally, the picture of the day: