Beijing Police Museum + Baijiu + Acrobatics

Today, after a night with one too many baijiu shots (i.e. only one shot, equals one too many), I visited the Beijing Police Museum, and in the evening I attended a Chinese acrobatics show.

Baiju is China's version of soju, or vodka, only stronger and intensely foul. The name Baijiu translates as white liquor, or sometimes white wine, but it tastes more like rubbing alcohol, or paint thinner, or some sort of poison that burns your throat and keeps on burning. Baijiu is between 80 and 120 proof. I drank only one ounce, and immediately felt nauseous.

The Beijing Police Museum was an excuse to get out of the heat. It included items from Chinese crimes (e.g. axes, pistols), and all sorts of police and protection equipment, including items dating back 500 years or more, like roof tiles with spikes used to discouraged robbers from home invasion.

Despite English translations on the exhibit signs, there were some items of interest that certainly would have been more interesting had their been even more context: there was plenty of what, but not enough who and why. Often I couldn't tell if I was looking at items from infamous crimes, or otherwise unknown crimes. But even some of the mundane stuff was interesting in a curious and dated sort of way, like the exhibit displaying lost-and-found items turned into the Beijing police: pager from the 1980s, cell phone from the 1990s, cheap costume jewelry, and so on.

The acrobatics show was OK but certainly not great. It was maybe one-quarter as interesting as Cirque du Soleil, but half the price. When it comes to acrobatics, I've been spoiled by the half dozen or so Cirque shows I've seen. Not that the performers weren't talented, because they were, just not amazingly so, plus the set design and costumes were low budget.