January 29, 2006

happy year of the dog!


HAPPY NEW YEAR

the chinese new year begins today, and it is a year of the dog:

People born in the Year of the Dog possess the best traits of human nature. They have a deep sense of loyalty, are honest, and inspire other people's confidence because they know how to keep secrets. But Dog People are somewhat selfish, terribly stubborn, and eccentric. They care little for wealth, yet somehow always seem to have money. They can be cold emotionally and sometimes distant at parties. They can find fault with many things and are noted for their sharp tongues. Dog people make good leaders. They are compatible with those born in the Years of the Horse, Tiger, and Rabbit.
the picture above shows an ad in today's new york times. ABC carpet is reaching out for asian american customers. there is also an article in the style section -- you know, that's the one with all the wedding announcements -- about the year of the dog.

The reason many Chinese (and half-Chinese) couples are choosing Dog wedding dates over Rooster ones traces back to the solar calendar. The Year of the Rooster, which began on Feb. 9, 2005, and ended yesterday, did not contain a lichun, or beginning of spring. (Lichun usually falls on Feb. 4, the halfway point between the winter and summer solstices.) A year without a lichun is called a "widow year" or "blind year," explained Theodora Lau, the author of "The Handbook of Chinese Horoscopes" (HarperCollins, 2005). "The thinking is that if you get married in a blind year, you didn't look at what you were doing, and you could get divorced next year."

Many couples, both tradition-minded and modern, took notice, postponing wedding plans last year. (According to articles in the Asian press, would-be brides and bridegrooms in China shunned the Rooster in large numbers, often leaving wedding-related businesses there with empty reception halls.)

The Year of the Dog, which will end Feb. 17, 2007, will span two lichun, Ms. Lau said. "It's very lucky to see spring in the beginning of the year and in the end. A lot of people would love to get married in a double-spring year."[...]

Johnson Lau, owner of Highlight Studio Wedding Center, a Chinatown wedding planner, said his business has recovered from the 20 percent dip in bookings he experienced last year. "We've already booked 50 for this coming year," he said.
well, one of my friends is getting married in the summer. she's a dog person with a capital d and she will love the idea that it is the year of the dog and considered an extra-lucky year.

need to know more about the year of the dog? google it. (by the way, the verb google still hasn't made it into webster's online dictionary. strange.)

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