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Posted at 12:25 PM ET, 02/ 3/2011

Year of the Rabbit

By Elizabeth Flock
A child touches rabbit-shaped souvenir items for sale during Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations in Chinatown in Manila, Philippines. (By Romeo Ranoco/Reuters)

Happy Chinese New Year of the Rabbit!

The fifteen-day spring festival celebration based on the lunisolar calendar kicks off today with the promise of dragon dances, firecrackers and couplets hung in windows. The Chinese New Year Parade will take over D.C.'s Chinatown in all its red glory Sunday from 2 to 5 p.m.

If you’ve ever eaten at a Chinese restaurant and looked down at the place mat, you probably know that the Chinese New Year also means the beginning of a new animal sign. Based on a 12-year cycle, this year's presiding animal zodiac is the golden Rabbit. You know you're a rabbit if you were born in one of the following years:

1915, 1927, 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999

And if you were lucky enough to be born a rabbit, here's what your sign says about you:

-You love to help others and enjoy a quiet life surrounded by family and friends.
-You're gentle, compassionate, playful and sincere.
-You avoid conflict like the plague and can be seen as a pushover.
-The playfulness of a rabbit can lead to a lot of dishonest dealings in business, politics and relationships.

It wasn’t easy to find well-known DCites that were rabbits, which might be due to the rabbit's quiet nature. But we did scrounge up a few, and we’re not sure how well they fit the rabbit profile:

Martin O'Malley, governor of Maryland
Marvin Gaye, songwriter and musician
Rand Paul, United States senator from Kentucky
Darrel Young, Redskins linebacker

What's your animal zodiac sign? Do you think you match up with your animal?

Screen grab from Qimaster

Rabbits are compatible with the Goat or the Pig. Learn about your compatibility with other zodiac signs; just don't expect to be happy with the result.

Now go practice your Chinese couplets!

By Elizabeth Flock  | February 3, 2011; 12:25 PM ET
Categories:  DC, Elizabeth Flock  
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It is Lunar New Year, not Chinese New Year. At least six countries celebrate this new year. They are:
* Chinese
* Japanese
* Korean
* Vietnamese
* Tibetan
* Mongolian

Posted by: Tough_Cookie | February 3, 2011 1:13 PM | Report abuse

the world is a party!!

Posted by: luispastor | February 3, 2011 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Chances are if you've eaten at a Chinese restaurant, you've eaten rabbit ... or dog ... or cat ...

Posted by: blackforestcherry | February 3, 2011 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Quote "It is Lunar New Year, not Chinese New Year. At least six countries celebrate this new year. They are:
* Chinese
* Japanese
* Korean
* Vietnamese
* Tibetan
* Mongolian"
The Lunar New Year is the Chinese New Year based on the Chinese Lunar Calendar. China had great influence in Asia's history so that the surrounding countries celebrated this Chinese Lunar New Year. Nowadays, the Japanese don't celebrate much. But Koreans, Vietnamese etc. still do and they call it "Chinese New Year".

Posted by: hiwp | February 4, 2011 3:37 PM | Report abuse

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