2012, Year of the Dragon

Well, it’s almost Chinese New Year, and this new one is the year of the dragon. It didn’t escape too many Chinese designers’ notice that it’s pretty easy to turn a “2” into a dragon, so lately we’re seeing a lot of designs like these:

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2012, Year of the Dragon

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Here’s one that’s a little different:

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Not as fun as last year, though! I’m still not a huge fan of this holiday, and it’s getting harder and harder for this country’s residents to go …

CNY Confusion Ahead (but also CNY Sexiness)

Chinese New Year (CNY) is this week, and it’s bound to cause confusion. This is because we’ve basically got three systems for numbering days overlapping, and quite close together:

  1. The days of the week are referred to by numbers, starting with Monday (AKA “One-day”), then Tuesday (AKA “Two-day”), etc. In Chinese they’re 星期一星期二星期三星期四星期五星期六星期天.

  2. For most of the year, dates are also referred to using the Western system.

Chinese New Year Line Dance

Overheard near Jing’an Temple, a conversation between a Chinese woman and an American woman:

Chinese woman: It is Chinese New Year, time for line dance.

American woman: Really, line dances? You do line dances for Chinese New Year?

Chinese woman: Yes, line dance.

American woman: What kind of line dance?

Chinese woman: You know, Chinese line. Like that stone line.

American woman: Oh, lion dance! OK, I see.

I don’t mean to make fun of anyone’s pronunciation, but the …

Florida for Chinese New Year

This year I will not be in China for Chinese New Year. I think this is the first time since I came to China in 2000 that I’ll be elsewhere for the CNY holiday.

Anyway, expect light posting for the next two weeks.

Also, check out Brendan’s latest post: BREAKING NEWS: EXPLOSIONS ROCK CHINESE CAPITAL. (I’ve always said that if there were one night of the year when an enemy could attack China and no one would notice, it …

Best Chinese New Year Podcast for Learning Chinese

I may “hate” Chinese New Year, but it’s inescapable. We also do coverage of it at ChinesePod, of course. This year we did an Elementary lesson on Chinese New Year Firecrackers, but the one I especially liked was at the Advanced level, called 春节采访 (“Chinese New Year Interview”).

I’ve talked about the Advanced lessons on ChinesePod before, and one of the criticisms I got was that the dialogues (which are scripted) seem too fake. I …

10 Reasons I Hate Chinese New Year

Random photos

I am well known for being positive and upbeat about life in China, but sometimes I just have to vent a little. This one is a special case, because when I first arrived in China I was thrilled to be celebrating the real Chinese New Year, with real Chinese people, the authentic way. With each passing year my enthusiasm has faded just a bit more, until it became this colorless loathing for the alpha holiday of the Chinese calendar.…

Craptaculars

Matt of the Nanjingren blog (one of the newest additions to the Sinosplice Network) came to Hangzhou this weekend with some of his classmates. Unfortunately I was only able to spend one meal with him because my schedule is rather full this weekend. It’s fuller than usual because I’ve been coerced into participating in Zhejiang University of Technology’s 50th Anniversary Craptacular.

Craptacular Hosts

I don’t pretend to invent the word “craptacular,” but I’ve noticed it’s already in common usage among foreigners …

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