Year of the Pig

February 8, 2019

Elephant seals next week.

The Chinese Year of the Pig began this week. The pig in Chinese astrology is a calm, prosperous, gentle animal, generous and focused. Here are some brief horoscopes for Year of the Pig.

A roundup of world folktales about pigs can be found here.

A four-part article I wrote several years ago about the sow in Western mythology is here.

I read once that you’re not supposed to clean the house for the first three days of the Chinese New Year, so as not to clean out the good luck. It seemed like good advice, and I started applying it to the Gregorian new year as well. What a boon to have days when you not only don’t clean, you don’t feel like you should be cleaning. I decided that the no-cleaning days should apply to Halloween (the Celtic new year) and Yule (the Heathen new year). Then I started celebrating Diwali and Rosh Hashana, by not cleaning of course. Now if I don’t feel like cleaning, I can say “It’s New Year’s somewhere.”

Happy Chinese New Year!

February 16, 2018

It’s the Year of the Dog.

I decided a few years ago that I would observe this holiday every year, after learning that it’s ill advised to clean your house during the first three days of the Chinese New Year. You’re sweeping good luck out the door if you do. I can’t say I would necessarily be cleaning on these three days if I didn’t know better, but now for three days out of the year I don’t feel like I should be cleaning.

And that’s something to celebrate.