The Real New Year – Chinese New Year

Greetings, Asian Enthusiasts!

Snowbro (Xue-Di) says “Ni hao!”

It’s been about a month since I last updated because I was silently fuming against this New Year’s on January 1st. I mean, c’mon. “New Year’s” is based on the solar calendar from some greco-roman tradition that was arbitrarily decided upon. Who says January 1st is the first day of the year? Is there a placement in the universe that decides that this is the right day?

The last time the planets (and Pluto) aligned, the world still didn’t explode. Great math there, Mayans. Should’ve had an Asian do the calculations. | From Universe Today

If we’re looking at calendars, the Islamic calendar makes more sense by having the first day of the year begin Spring. That’s logical! Why would you have the New Year be in the middle of Winter? To be fair, if New Year’s was decided in California, then the previous point should be disregarded.

This time, Sean Bean lives.

Chinese New Year is based on the lunar calendar, which is much cooler than the sun. Why is the moon cooler? Everything looks better at night. Like the Islamic calendar, Chinese New Year kicks start Spring as well. Its other name is “Spring Festival.” That’s kind of generic, but when you’re using over 100,000 characters with up to 60 strokes per character, you’d get lazy too.

For some of the Asian readers out there, you may be offended by my listing of it as Chinese New Year and would like to classify it as Korean New Year, Vietnamese New Year, etc. It’s true. You guys celebrate it too, but here are a few points to my listing of it as Chinese New Year.

  1. China influenced the other countries during the Han Dynasty years (206-220AD).
  2. China has 1 billion people in the country and probably more spread throughout the world. China, Singapore, etc. pretty much SHUT DOWN during this holiday festivity (see more below).
  3. Gong Xi Fat Choi – known by Americans everywhere.
  4. I’m Chinese. Deal with it!
So, let’s break down why Chinese New Year’s is awesome.
Beginning of Spring
Chinese New Year is a logical holiday that falls on a very specific event. Spring was likely to come around this time of year in China, and after thousands of years of practice, they realized that early Februaryish was the time that started the farming season.
Cool Mythology
Chinese New Year also has a story behind it. There’s a beast called “Nian” or “year” who eats your kids, but it turns out that if you put out a feast for it, the beast will eat that instead ’cause you know… animal instinct. Nian is also afraid of red and loud noises, so bam, firecrackers + red envelopes, red clothing, red lanterns, everything RED.
Dear Nian, leave us alone. Thanks.
Red Envelopes
You even get money of this holiday. Your parents, elders, etc. give you these red packets of money which are either called “hong bao” or red bag (translated envelope because it’s in an envelope) or “ya sui qian” or “evil squashing money.” Your money squashes EVIL. You sleep on the red packet from New Year’s Eve into the New Year’s to squash the dastardly spirits from ruining your good fortune.
Cleaning That’s Worth It
It’s literally spring cleaning, but you’re getting rid of all the bad junk and bad spirits out of your house, so you have a fresh start for the New Year. Why else would anyone do Spring Cleaning? Makes no sense to just randomly walk up to your family and declare “Spring Cleaning” because you feel like it. Is it an event? Yes. A stupid event that your family will despise you for. But if it’s mandated by tradition and will increase your fortune for the next year, yep, I’ll do it.
Two Week Holiday
China pretty much takes a two week siesta with crazy parties going on everywhere and all the time. The solar New Year’s only has that big New Year’s Eve party, which is followed by resting on New Year’s day. That’s quiet and lame.

Chinese New Year is essentially family and friend gatherings back to back to back until the 15th day where your family gets together and slowly begins to rest up for returning to work and school. So much excitement and passion happening continuously… just imagine.

My High School AP Physics teacher once told us that if all the people in China were to synchronize jump, it would shift the planet’s trajectory. This is the closest we’ll ever get.

Please don’t all fall at once please don’t fall at once | From International Business Times
Lion and Dragon Parade
Okay, the rose parade is pretty, but think about all the plant murder that must happen for it! If 10 roses fill a square foot, how many roses would there be needed to fill all of the floats? I don’t know because I didn’t want to calculate and research the amount, but the answer’s a whole lot.
Chinese New Year, there are people dressed in lion and dragon costumes doing choreographed fight and acrobatic dances. 

Fun Sayings
Everyone usually says “xin nian kwai le” or “Happy New Year.” Adults say “Wan Sui Ru Yi,” which means 10,000 years of good fortune. Don’t you want to be wished 10,000 years of good fortune instead of just “Happy New Year. Oh what’s your resolution? You want to lose 10 lbs? You can do it.” 10,000 years of good fortune would be like losing 10 lbs and being able to eat as much Haagen Dazs for the rest of your life without gaining weight and it improves your health.

Kids get to be somewhat snotty nosed and say “Hong Bao Na Lai” or “Gimme my money.” Of course, it’s somewhat frowned upon, and they usually say it in good humor followed up by the “Wan Sui Ru Yi” ’cause Chinese people be polite.

Food
There’s going to be a whole separate blog post for this because it’s just too good.

So pretty much if we look at it, Chinese New Year’s completely awesome; whereas, normal New Year’s only has the Rose Parade and that’s herbicide.