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Chinese Zodiac

I am eating at my favourite Chinese restaurant, eating something I can never hope to pronounce properly nor do I particularly wish to identify all the ingredients, and I spy my placemat. It wasn’t a fancy or ornate placemat steeped in Oriental design or symbolism, it was just a paper placemat and printed upon it was the Chinese Zodiac. I was captivated by this new way of looking at astrology. I wondered what different perspectives such an old and rich culture would have on the stars and their prophetic predictions. Perhaps the Chinese astrology symbols yield different truths than our own and unique insights into our fortunes and misfortunes. Most of all, I was bored; so I read the placemat its entirety.

I greedily absorbed the placemats information, sucking in the knowledge it unfolded to me like a sponge, knowing that once the placemat was gone, its valuable data would be gone forever – or until I went back to the restaurant. I tried to be nonchalant about the whole thing not wanted to illicit the attention of the other diners and restaurant staff. I feared that if I was spotted learning this black art of the East they’d stop me. Surely such reticent information wasn’t to be leaked lightly. I pass to you the Chinese Zodiac as I memorized it from the sacred placemat.

Firstly, it’s important to note that unlike our own zodiac, the Chinese zodiac is not based on month of birth but year of birth. This means that everyone your age acts exactly the same way you do. Here are the symbols exactly as I remember them:

The Rat
1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008 Forthright, disciplined, systematic and charismatic. Rats are endowed with great leadership and are hard-working to achieve their goals. Rats are highly ambitious, calculative and cruel if need be.
The Ox
1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997 Dependable, calm, methodical, patient and hard-working. Security is the oxen’s main preoccupation with life and is prepared to toil long and hard to achieve it for themselves and their families. Truthful and sincere, the ox is not extravagant and is honest and patient.
The Tiger
1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998 Unpredictable, rebellious, colourful, powerful, passionate, daring and impulsive. Tiger people are difficult to resist, for they are magnetic characters and their natural air of authority confers a certain prestige on them. They are tempestuous yet calm, warm-hearted yet fearsome, courageous in the face of danger yet yielding, soft and mysterious. They enjoy a life full of challenges and unexpected events, like visiting unusual places and meeting interesting or outstanding people.
The Pig
1935, 1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007 Honest, simple, gallant, sturdy, sociable, peace-loving, patient, loyal, hard-working and trusting. Someone born in the year of the Boar is usually honest, straightforward and a patient person. They are a modest, shy character who prefers to work quietly behind the scenes. Pigs are people that will offer a helping hand in a time of need and not use the opportunity to try and get into your pants.
The Snake
1929, 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001 Deep thinker, wise, mystic, graceful, soft-spoken, sensual, creative, prudent, shrewd and ambitious. People born in the year of the snake are considered beautiful, attractive, wise and enchanting. Such a person is a thinker who also likes to live well; affluence. The Snake person loves books, music, clothes, fine food and wine; but with all their fondness for the finer things in life, their innate grace and elegance gives them a dislike for frivolities, small minds and foolish talk. Snake people hate their asses for no reason.
The Cock
1921, 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005

People born in the year of the Cock are usually very observant. They are brave, resilient and tenacious but can also be quite self-absorbed, pretentious, and overly romantic. They are typically conceited pricks and braggarts that will bore you to tears with tales of their achievements. Most of the time, they are very accurate and precise with their observation.

The Monkey
1920, 1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004 Inventor, motivator, improviser, quick-witted, inquisitive, flexible, polite, innovative and problem solver. Such people are often inventors, entertainers and the creative geniuses behind anything ingenious, including mischief. Spanking a monkey in public should be avoided and is best considered a private activity. They have natural quick-wittedness which enables them to understand what is happening and then make a right decision.
The Dragon
1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000 Magnanimous, stately, vigorous, strong, self-assured, proud, noble, direct and dignified. It would be right to say that people born in the year of the dragon don’t exist. It is unlikely for them to escape unnoticed from a party or to take second place in a competition because they’re big and scaly. The dragon person has an active mind and shows an unfeigned interest in the world around him/her. The most intriguing part about a dragon, and one that you need to know, is the ina[rest blurred by soup spill]
The Rabbit
1915-1999 Gracious, kind, sensitive, soft-spoken and an all around prissy-pants. Those following traditional Chinese astrology consider people born in the Year of the Rabbit to make ideal politicians. In Chinese astrological thought, a "rabbit person" is graceful, cultured, well-mannered, articulate, talented, and ambitious but they’re really good for shit.
The Ukulele
1487, 3108, 6, 1966 naive, over-reliant, self-indulgent, gullible, fatalistic and materialistic. The ukulele is often willing to give as well as expect a lot of liberty. These people are extremely independent and confident, making them real jerks. They are very good at recognizing patterns: she or he is on to the thought in your mind even before you've expressed it. In general, these people are annoying.
Tonka Car
The Tonka Car
B14, G43, 190N, 2 Honest, intelligent, straightforward, loyal, rugged and attractive. He is the one who people are most likely to turn to when they need help. The Tonka Car person will come through every time. That is because he/she is sensitive to others and something blah blah blah, particularly if someone has suffered an injustice; yada yada yada they’ll help.

I understand that this is a lot to take in. There are mystical forces at work in our universe that determine our destinies, our dreams, our hopes, our interactions with others, our personality traits, our quirks, our pet-peeves and our freedom of choice. It leaves one awestruck that such information has been discovered and documented, and all on a paper placemat. I know I’ve risked a few dirty looks and sneers to get this information to you. Use it well. Use it to self-discover, to know yourself better, to overcome your shortcomings, and to manipulate and mentally overpower those around you. You now possess the wisdom of the ages.

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