Friday, February 08, 2008

Year of the (Drowning) Rat

Fourteen straight days of rain and seven more predicted, and Oregon is…hard to believe…wetter than usual. The weather is so intense and the snow so deep in the mountains that the ski resorts had to close. Now the creeks are flowing fast and there are avalanche postings everywhere. So we usher in the Year of the (Drowning) Rat.

According to the Chinese Lunar Calendar it is Year 4706. The Chinese New Year is celebrated on the first day of the First Moon of the lunar calendar. The corresponding date in the solar calendar varies from as early as January 21st to as late as February 19th. Chinese New Year, as the Western New Year, signifies turning over a new leaf.

You are a Rat if you were born between

02/05/1924 - 01/24/1925 (Wood)
01/24/1936 - 02/10/1937 (Fire)
02/10/1948 - 01/28/1949 (Earth)
01/28/1960 - 02/14/1961 (Metal)
02/15/1972 - 02/02/1973 (Water)
02/02/1984 - 02/19/1985 (Wood)
02/19/1996 - 02/06/1997 (Fire)
02/07/2008 - 01/25/2009 (Earth)

A Rat Year is a time of hard work, activity and renewal. This is a good year to begin a new job, get married, launch a product or make a fresh start. Ventures begun now may not yield fast returns, but opportunities will come for people who are well-prepared and resourceful. The best way to succeed is to be patient, let things develop slowly and make the most of every opening you can find. People born in an Earth Rat Year are said to be logical realists, shrewd, charming, ambitious, and inventive.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Super Fat Tuesday

People are dancing in the streets in New Orleans (where I have never been), and lining up to vote in Missouri and California (where I used to live) and other states (where I’ve never lived). So today is Super Tuesday and Fat Tuesday and Shrove Tuesday and Mardi Gras, and it also marks two months old for baby Ember. I’m ensconced on the couch watching the election news on my giant flat screen high definition TV. Off and on I read a few pages in the Book Club selection for Thursday (A Long Way Gone), knit a few rows on the never-ending Pinwheel Baby Blanket, or put a piece or two in the current jigsaw puzzle. Tonight I will babysit for my granddaughter while Windy and Chris go out for dinner to celebrate her birthday (36).

Oregon’s primary will be a non-event in May after everything is decided. It’s a vote-by-mail closed primary that will be mostly ignored by the media who prefer entrance and exit polls. It will no doubt be ignored by the candidates themselves, and I am not expecting a living room sit-down with Hillary. We might expect visits from Ron Paul and Ralph Nader, but other than that…Oregon is not on anybody’s list. It would be nice to have a say in democracy in action, but I gave that up when I moved away from Missouri and California.

Therefore, I am counting on my friends and associates to vote the right way. You know who you are…and you know who I hope to see emerge the victor.