Voices from Russia

Sunday, 4 February 2018

4 February 2018. Comrade Xi on Great China

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Saturday, 3 February 2018

3 February 2018. Comrade Xi on Great China

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Saturday, 30 April 2016

30 April 2016. “Born in the Year of the Goat”

00 goat 090416

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The Chinese Zodiac moves on a 12-year cycle. According to Chinese belief, every year is associated with one of the Zodiac figures. Well, what Western years are equivalent to the Year of the Goat? Here’s a list:

  • 1907
  • 1919
  • 1931
  • 1943
  • 1955
  • 1967
  • 1979
  • 1991
  • 2003
  • 2015

The Chinese year begins in late January or early February and goes into January/February of the next Western year.

“Goat people” aren’t overly fond of sudden changes or impulsive decisions. Rather, they find comfort in repetition and well-laid plans, having a natural inclination towards this type of work and are skilled at pulling together actions and events in a manner that flows naturally. However, they’re protective about who they let into their inner circle. Not just anyone can get to know a “Goat person”. Rather, they must prove themselves steadily over time, through kind gestures and loving support, until they win final acceptance.

Neither Nicky nor I are “Goat people”… I’m a “Horse person”… I’m supposed to be flexible, but stubborn when it comes to ideas, but also incredibly patient when it comes to hearing out what other people have to say. They favour straightforward and blunt conversation, yet, they avoid starting up unnecessary trouble. “Horse people” are incredibly loyal friends and partners. Perhaps, it’s because first impressions have a lasting effect, or simply that they wish to do well by others. However, they’re consistently there when friends need them. They’re also quite capable of resolving conflict.

Nicky is a “Tiger person”… incredibly strong and stable, however, they sometimes hold too much inside and can find it difficult to let stress out. They tend to act without warning. From setting out to discover new things to getting lost in their thoughts and dreams, they rarely ever show exactly how they’re feeling or what they’re thinking. Chinese belief posits that Tiger people and Horse people are quite compatible.

This was a fun little romp, wasn’t it?

BMD

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

12 November 2014. A View From the East… Spying on Santa (Luo Jie/China Daily)

00 Luo Jie. Spying on Santa. 2013

Spying on Santa

Luo Jie

2013

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Yeah… it’s almost American Christmas season… that is, from American Thanksgiving to Catholic Christmas on 25 December. Unlike trad Christians in the Catholic, Orthodox, and Reformation Churches, Anglo Americans have a holiday season that PRECEDES the holiday (I shit you not). There ain’t no “Twelve Days of Christmas”… there’s four weeks of utter commercialised madness starting with Black Friday (the Black Mass of this “holiday”)… then, Catholic Christmas… and all Anglo Americans collapse in a stupor, glad that the “holiday season” is over for another year. There’s not even a New Year’s celebration of any note! It’s not like the Russian holiday of New Year’s-Christmas-Epiphany… nineteen days of partying hearty and fun (including jumping in an ice hole on Epiphany… no lie, I’ve done it… don’t knock it until you’ve tried it). It has none of the hearty exuberance of “c’était un Noël au Québec” (grand-père has to come and give the family bénédiction for the coming year first)… NOBODY decorates for the season “comme le font les québécois” (must be that Caribou that they drink… half moonshine and half homemade wine). It isn’t the Sicilian midnight feast after Christmas Mass… nor is it the homely joy of an English Christmas Cake… it’s a deadening exercise… so much so that I wonder why they even engage in it.

Keep your wits about you and stay out of the malls from Black Thursday until Catholic Christmas. Then… CELEBRATE… feast, feast, feast, like real men and women and kids should. Pass me the roast beast, please… I WILL take seconds, if you will.

BMD

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