The Significance Of Today, 2013-01-04

Love you a lifetime

For many of us who observe China’s public holiday system, today’s the first day of work in 2013. But for many others in China – especially romantics – today’s significant for another reason: it’s “Love You a Lifetime” day.

It’s not officially recognized anywhere, but today just sounds significant. In Mandarin and Cantonese, 2-0-1-3-1-4 sounds like “爱你一生一世” (translation: Love You a Lifetime). I’m not a sucker for Hallmark events like Valentine’s Day – call me unromantic – but I do have to admit that the nerd in me likes numbers, so days that sound special are kind of cool. I mean, 201314 only comes once, right?

Or maybe it’s the Hong Konger in me, and we really believe in numbers. Like how buildings can’t have 4th (die!), 14th (will die!), 24th (easy to die!), etc., floors. Or phone numbers with a lot of 8s (rich!) are always chosen first. And one time, the license plate “18” (will get rich!) sold for more than US$2 million at a Lunar New Year auction.

Anyway, I’ve digressed. For those of you reading this, I’m not going to say “Love You for a Lifetime” or “Love You For Life” or “Love You Forever” — but since it is a new year, I’ll wish you instead a “lifetime of love.” And if you’re in a relationship and don’t know how to celebrate, check out this poll on Xinhua for some ideas. Maybe today we’ll see a new record for marriage proposals!

    8 Responses to “The Significance Of Today, 2013-01-04”

    1. terroir

      It doesn’t sound anything like “爱你一生一世”. In both Canto and Mando.

      This is total wish fulfillment and superstition. While there’s nothing wrong with that per se, in China it still remains that a symbolic act is more important and influential than an actual act.

    2. RhZ

      So this is the previously twit-bound Alicia? With all the hat-tips in your possession you decided to make the jump to the deep end of the pool?

      And this is the inaugural post at BJC? Well, I suppose its suitable. Still, er-ling is equal to ai-nin? That’s a bit of a stretch to me. But whatever.

      Heh didn’t realize HK had that too with the buildings skipping numbers. SH is a mish-mash, some buildings have all floors, some have 14 out, some have 13 and 14 both out, a few only 13 out. 24 isn’t a big deal, I have never noticed it to be skipped, and I think usually 4 is not skipped either, although often that’s a service floor or something. And 4th floor apartments are almost always rented out rather than bought to be lived in. Sometimes it seems every expat I know lives on the 4th floor.

      When I go to a restaurant, the first question is, what number is this table? Only some places delete the 4s…and now the captcha is going to make me enter a number below…and it is indeed number 4. Damn!

    3. Jive madra

      Hey, ain’t nothing wrong with a bit of romance; I don’t mind people finding love in things – alphanumerical or otherwise

    4. Jive madra

      Actually, pardon my laziness, but ye are right… can someone explain how “ling” and “ni” sound the same; ditto “san’ and “shang”.? Please allay my ignorance!


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