Friday, 4 January 2008

Gong Xi Fa Cai from the K-popped! Trio

Now that we've entered into 2008, the K-popped! Trio has decided to don their festive new clothes for the upcoming Chinese New Year celebrations, which fall on Feb 7 and 8.

Whoo hoo, we hope to usher in the Year of the Rat with loads of good friends, food, fortune, health and...er, ang pows (that's Hokkien, or hong baos in Mandarin. They are red packets containing $$$ given by those who are married to children and those who aren't hitched.)!

Now: Gong Xi Fa Cai from the K-popped! Trio

After being bundled up all winter, Rooster has put on her long-sleeved Chinese top and is ready for some yee sang action! Yee sang (that's Cantonese or yusheng in Mandarin; simplified Chinese: 鱼生) is a Chinese-style raw fish salad.

Strips of raw fish, typically salmon, mixed with shredded vegetables and a variety of sauces and condiments are all mixed into the dish, which symbolises abundance, prosperity and vigour.

The main highlight in having yee sang is when family and friends gather to toss the dish or Lo Sang. Loved ones gather around the table and, on cue, proceed to toss the shredded ingredients into the air with chopsticks. It is believed that the higher you toss the ingredients the more prosperous you'll be. Tee hee, someone, get me a ladder already :-P.

Meanwhile, Orchid is reliving her childhood by playing with fire sparklers! Ah, this brings back many fond memories. It was always fun when the Trio got together to burn stuff play sparklers. We would burn dried mango leaves, write our names on cement, burn grass and ants etc. Orchid and Rooster, those we good times, no?

As for me, I'm trying to wish everyone a Happy Chinese New Year the traditional way. Clasping my hands together and going...err, 안녕하세요? Hee hee hee...how do I wish one a Happy Chinese New Year in Korean, by the way?

To all our readers, thanks for dropping by K-popped! and please, help yourself to some of the Mandarin oranges and sweet delicacies laid out for you ;-).

*Lights the firecrackers on the far left of the masthead and runs away*

Before: The Trio in a very Christmassy mood

K-popped! Trio's other antics...so far:
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20 Comments:

Rooster said...

Ahhh ha ha! *weeps* My beloved yee sang! How I missed you so! *drool*

If I'm not mistaken, yee sang/lo sang is unique to Malaysia and Singapore! This custom is catching on in Hong Kong, but I haven't seen anything like it here in China.

kpop_rub said...

HEHE You all are looking too cute for the new year! I love any excuse to play with sparklers!!! Do you have the parades too? I always wanted to be in Chinatown for the new year to attend.

inquinn said...

love Rooster's top!

Gail T. said...

새해 복많이 바드세요!
i always look forward to the changing k-popped headers. great job.

Anonymous said...

Errr ... isn't it more than a month to CNY?? A bit too eager to collect angpows?? ;p

gail t. said...

whoops, i think i got that new year's greeting wrong... ehehe. any native korean speakers out there to correct it? hehe.

Clammy said...

that's right.

Liz said...

Happy New Year and Happy Chinese New Year is the same in Korean? Cool then. Thanks.

Yup, never too early to collect ang pows, anonymous. Tee hee.

Oh really, Rooster? Lo Sang is unique to Malaysia and Singapore? And I thought it originated from China.

Yay, we got our own custom or what not. Food + prosperity - how typical.

Clammy said...

Liz what do you mean are they the same? Like the meaning of the saying or the actual dates? What do chinese people say for happy new years?

ladida said...

I'm not definite but I think rooster is correct. My parents originated from China, but I'm not familiar w/the lo sang custom. But it sounds fun. Heck, any festivity sounds fun!
hmmm..clammy, i'm curious now that u brought it up. When is Korean's NY & how do u celebrate it? For many days?

meiruo_chan said...

He...in the Chinese New Year mood already. I missed the oranges. Very synonyms with Chinese New Year, right?

If I'm not mistaken, Korean New Year is called Seol-nal. This is the biggest festival in Korea. They also called it Lunar New Year's Day (traditional Korean New Year). Celebrated on the first day of the first month i.e 1st January every year.In this day they visit ancestral graves, exchange greetings with family, relatives, neighbors and friends. And they also played 'Yut-nori', a Korean traditional board game.

But what I like the most is the food. Korean have special food serve on special day. On New Year the must have menu are 'tteok-guk' and 'yak-wa'. 'tteok-guk' is sliced rice cake in soup. 'tteok' is rice cake and 'guk' is soup. 'Yak-wa' is honey cakes.

Clammy said...

Liz & Meiruo-Chan Koreans share their new years with the Chinese New Year. However, it's very common practice to have New Years on western New Years. On that day we eat ddeok-guk for good luck and Sebeh or bow to our elders. We then wish them a good year and they wish us a good year and proceed to tell us how our year should be prosperous. Depending on age, that goes something like this in this order... do well in school, graduate, get into a good school, do well in school, graduate, get a good job, get married, have lots of kids, buy a nice house. ha ha ha! The elders than give us money or some other gift that helps us for the new year.
Traditionally, we wear hanboks on this day. I personally haven't worn one since I was a child.

Yut is a boardgame that involves throwing 4 sticks and moving your piece around a board based on how the sticks land (combinations of face up and face down). As you move around the board, you can take shortcuts if you land on those spaces on the corner or center. Players on the same team can move as a team if they land on eachothers spot and opposing players can bump a player or players back to the beginning if they land on their spot. First one to make it all the way around with the entire team wins. I think the U.S. created a boardgame based on yut. Money is bet on the outcome. We used to play hwato also for money. In my family, we just play texas hold-em now for a single large pot now! ha ha.

Solnal shares the Chinese New Year in February or whenever it falls based on the lunar calendar. I don't know about visiting ancestors on New Years because it's quite difficult to do so unless you happen to live near by their burial sites. We have Chuseok for that. I haven't been able to go back to my ancestrial burial site in Korea for over 5 years now =(.

meiruo_chan said...

Thanks Clammy. I forgot about the 'Sebae' tradition. I mixed up already about the New Year and Seol-Nal. So it's just like the Chinese New Year. 'Chuseok' is Harvest festival right? Or if I'm not mistaken it can be called 'mid-autumn' festival. They wear Hanbok in 'Chuseok' too.

I like the tradition of paying visit to the ancestral graves. We have the same tradition here. I don't know if Chinese do this on their festival but as for Malay, the first day of Hari Raya after prayer it's a must to visit family graves i.e: late father, mother, grandparents, relatives.

About the traditional cloth, as far as I know, 'Hanbok' is very expensive. I ask my Korean friends and they said it can reached thousands dollar. But I love to see Korean in Hanbok. It's beautiful.

Liz said...

hi Clammy we say Gong Xi Fa Cai when Chinese New Year aka the Lunar New Year comes around.

Koreans celebrate the Lunar New Year too, right? And when it comes around, you guys go 새해 복 많이 바드세요 too?

Clammy said...

Liz yup, that's absolutely correct. Except it's common practice to do it on western new years too (first of January). It's all a matter of preference.

ladida said...

meiruo_chan,
don't quote me on this but families paying visit of their ancestral graves is optional during Mid-Autumn Fest. But tending to the graves of the departed ones is very important to the Chinese (so true for my family) during Qingming Fest, which occurs around early spring (lunar calendar)

Clammy said...

Koreans tend to the graves too. However, this is much easier now that they are all in regular cemetaries. In my family, my grandmothers generation and before are all in old fashioned ancestrial burial sites (a lot my ancestors are on a single mountain in Korea). Those ancient sites are still graves with large mounds over them and we have to groom the surrounding land around it as well as cut the grass on the mounds themselves.

meiruo_chan said...

Clammy, I've always seen that in Korean dramas. At first I thought the mounds look like igloo.

Ladida, what is Qingming Fest? Woho...this is getting interesting. I'm getting to know about others culture too instead of Korean only.

blinkable said...

Gong Xi Fa Cai everyone! *LOL* very interesting culture comments here ^^ I dont like to eat yeesang O_o Give me all the ang pows please XD

ladida said...

mmm..i'm no history buff nor culture buff, but i can discuss the general concept of 'qingming'. QingMing, which means 'pure + bright', is pretty similar to the US Memorial Day celebrations, a day when families pay homage to their beloved. Unlike Americans, the Chinese usu. have a week to commemorate their ancestors. Sooo, unless u have a permanent illness, there's no excuse for u to not tend to the graves & carry out your filial duty ;->
the rituals can be as simplified as offering flowers or as elaborate as offering food, wine/tea, flowers, lighting up their fav. cigerattes (for smokers), burning incense & joss paper items like paper money, gold, clothes, shoes, hat, etc. so that their ancestors can live comfortably in their other world. In return, the living) pray that their loved ones will bless them with good health & an auspicious year (shield them from evils/bad luck).
After the ceremony, it's not weird to see some families (not mine) picnicking at the grave site. Even tho it's a day for mourning of the dead, it's also a day for celebration of life. That's why Qingming occurs every Spring. When we think of Spring, we think of flowers blooming, grass growing green, birds chirping, lovers walking in the park & so forth. So Qingming like Spring signifies the celebrations of new beginnings, new/renewed hopes.
Oh, I forgot to mention that we celebrate Ghost Festival too, which occurs some time in July. It's similar to Qingming but on Ghost Day, they (ghosts) walk the earth & visit the living. Hope this newfound info didn't frightened anyone? ;P Sweet dreams :)

 

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