Happy New Year! It’s the Year of the Snake. So says the Chinese lunar calendar.It's time to get back in touch with your inner reptile. That assumes that you ever lost touch with your inner reptile.
But, don’t break out the champagne yet.
Chinese fortune tellers, soothsayers, astrologers and feng shui masters all believe that that is not going to be a very good Year of the Snake.
You see, the snake that’s arriving today might be venomous.
Agence France Presse consulted with the leading Chinese authorities. It reports their prophecies:
As they bid farewell to the Year of the Dragon, the fortune tellers warn that the "black water snake" that emerges to replace it on February 10 -- the first day of the Lunar New Year -- could be a venomous one that brings disaster.
Previous Snake years have been marked by the September 11, 2001 terror strikes that killed nearly 3,000 people, the crushing of the 1989 Tiananmen pro-democracy protests and the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941.
The 1929 stock market plunge that heralded the Great Depression also occurred in a snake year.
And then AFP adds this:
Astrologers say this year's snake is identified with the element of water -- symbolising fear -- that sits on top of the fire element, representing joy and optimism. They say conflict between the two will bring turbulence in May.
"This is a disaster year... a lot of things will not go smoothly," said Singapore's "Grand Master" Tan Khoon Yong of geomancy consultancy Way OnNet Group.
"The European Union may split, the euro may be in trouble," the 59-year-old said, adding that the bloc would be threatened by division in May.
Of course, Snake years are not all bad.
True enough, Mao Zedong was born in a Snake year. But so were Pablo Picasso, Abraham Lincoln and Jessica Chastain.
If you think that all of this hooey is not very American, look at it this way. In this country, February 10, 2013 ushers in The Year of Ken Stabler!