Is it the Year of the Sheep, the Goat, or the Ram? February 19 marks the Chinese New Year (and simultaneously Lunar New Year holidays in Vietnam, Tibet, Mongolia and Korea). As many people know, there is a 12-year animal zodiac cycle in the traditional Chinese calendar: the Year of the Horse has just ended. But what exactly is the animal sign for the year that is just now beginning? [more inside]
Chinese New Year's eve and its the Year of the Wood Horse according to the annual rotation of 12 animals and 5 elements followed by Chinese geomancers. Horse babies are always welcome, especially boys. Less known however is the stigma attached to the girl child born in the year of the Fire Horse. [more inside]
Light your torch and wave it for the lunar event tomorrow with the full 17-minute-long video for Duran Duran's New Moon On Monday (Part 1, Part 2).
Think traveling over the Yuletide season was bad? We're coming hard upon Chunyun, the Chinese "spring migration" when families reunite for the New Year. Enduring largest human migration in the world is a harrowing experience. One railway company has new ticketing strategies, which could turn tickets into collector's items.
Nian Nian You Yu ("nyen nyen yo yew") - translates to "Have abundance every year" or phonetically as "Year Year Got Fish." Tomorrow evening, over a billion people will be celebrating Lunar New Year's Eve with a Reunion Dinner. This involves family members coming together and for many, the ideal menu includes eating braised shark's fin soup. This is a perfect time to regale your friends and family with shark factoids and horror stories. True you mother won't appreciate when you point out to Auntie Mei how how around 100 million sharks are caught worldwide every year, mostly just for their fins, or that actually the dish is tasteless and people are just ordering it to show off their wealth. But surely it's better than one day having to say "Year Year Got No Fish."
Happy New Year! While you're having some Dim Sum and King Cake at your parish Pancake Supper, remember to celebrate the Year of the Black Horse and get those fireworks set off before Lent begins! Oh, my. Now my head is swimming... have to go lie down.
'Chinese' New Year news fest The generally wonderful Guardian Weblog has a special page of hard-hitting Chinese news links in honor of Lunar New Year beginning Jan. 24. (Commonly called Chinese New Year, but the Vietnamese celebrate it, too.) These include a link to a Foreign Affairs discussion of the Tiananmen Papers, believed to be internal Chinese documents about the Tiananmen Square events of 1989. (Earlier MeFi linkage of a Tiananmen Papers article can be found here.