The Mid-Autumn Festival is coming up, and you know what that means… MOONCAKES! And MOON GAZING! And POMELO HATS!
Once upon a time, there were ten suns, right? And they’re supposed to take turns lighting up the sky, but one day all ten of them appear at the same time. And everything was getting all burned up. And the emperor was like OH NOES WHAT TO DO. So this badass archer comes and shoots down nine of the ten suns, leaving just one in the sky. And one day a heavenly sage visits the archer and gives him two doses of immortality serum; one for the archer and one for his wife, Chang E. But Chang E was a greedy bitch and when the archer was out, she drank both of them and floated to the moon. (There are like a kazillion versions of this story; that’s the one my grandma told me.)
Chang E lives on the moon with a rabbit. If you’re in Japan, the rabbit is pounding rice in a bowl to make mochi. If you’re in China, the rabbit jumped into a fire to become dinner for a starving monk that was really a deity, and the deity was so touched that he set the rabbit onto the moon for evs. (There are a kazillion versions of that one, too.)
According to Wikipedia, the Vietnamese story is even weirder:
The Vietnamese version of the holiday recounts the legend of Th?ng Cu?i, whose banyan trees was uprooted after his wife accidentally urinated on it and took him with it to the moon. Every year, on the mid-autumn festival, children light lanterns to show Cu?i the way to Earth.
Additionally, supposedly during a Mongolian invasion, villagers baked messages into moon cakes in order to communicate and set a date for rebellion. Tasty and subversive!
This year, the Mid-Autumn Festival falls on October 6th, and on the 7th, the Chinese Culture Club (CCC), formerly the Chinese Student Association, will host a celebration. Traditional moon cakes and tea served! Fun games included!
Date: Saturday, October 7
Time: 8:00pm – 10:00pm
Venue: Chinese House (34 Lawn Avenue, across the street from the Butts)
Maybe we could talk them into also participating in the 2006 Mid Autumn Splash-Off?
What we are proposing:
When you hang out with your family or friends on the October 6th weekend, don’t forget to go outside and enjoy the bright full moon. While you are at it, bring a 2-litres soda, mentos and a camera. […] All the submissions and the goofy memories will be immortalized on this 1st Youtube Generation Moon Fest website, updated around the clock during the festival.
All submitted photos must capture part of the festivity of mixing carbonated drink and round objects. Submissions featuring the moon are strongly encouraged.
Also, starting at 7pm on the same day at AAA House (107 High Street), the KSA is celebrating Chusok. Chusok is the Korean Harvest Moon Festival and is also known as the Korean Thanksgiving. They’ll be serving a Korean dinner for $3.