Friday, June 08, 2007
Shanghai, China, May 2007 [Click for bigger fishies]
Remember the original Superman movie when the nasty guys were cast away from the planet Krypton? One of the enduring images from that film was when they were floating end-over-end through space, seemingly stuck inside a gigantic pane of glass. Or so it seemed: special effects were so primitive back then, and I was just a kid. So maybe my memories got fuzzed up in the process.
Wikipedia, keeper of all modern knowledge and then some, says it's something called the Phantom Zone. Um, OK.
Either way, the hotel I stayed in had this amazing aquarium in the rotunda where the conference was being held. It was composed of four enormous square glass pillars, all connected overhead by four similarly massive constructs of glass. Imagine the Arche de Triomphe, rendered completely in glass, reduced in size, then plunked down in the middle of a hotel lobby. Bad analogy, I know, but it was still the neatest aquarium I've ever seen.
This photo is a low-oblique view of one of the overhead segments. I am vertically challenged on the best of days, so this is as close as I could get to the fish when they decided to head up top. I really like what the angled glass did to the swimming creatures. I hope you do, too.
Your turn: The appeal of an aquarium. Please discuss.
One more thing: The Space Shuttle Atlantis is scheduled to fly tonight. I'm a space-head, and I get excited whenever humans leave the planet. Yesterday's entry, Divine Vessel, referred to the English translation of the name of China's Shenzhou manned space capsules. I thought it would be appropriate to slip in a bit of a Chinese-spacey reference. Go flight, and godspeed, Atlantis.