February 19th was the Lunar New Year, ushering in (depending on whom you ask) The Year Of The Sheep or The Year Of The Goat.  I’m always fascinated by the various cosmological theories created to understand the universe, and the Chinese Zodiac is one of the earliest I encountered, being printed on the placemats at the only Chinese restaurant in my home town.  Since my wife was born in 1967, I’ve encountered the different translation before (she loves sheep but hates goats, so she has strong opinions about which should be more correct), but wondered if it’s a matter of universal import, personal preference or just goats being weird and gross.  Either way, it leads us to today’s zodiacal query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) was born in the year of the dog, which means I need to look out for dragons, which seems like universal good advice, asking: Do you prefer to call it the Year of the Sheep,  the Goat, or the Ram?


About Author

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. I had never thought about this before. Now that I am (thanks, Matthew!) I would have to say sheep. I am a knitter and sheep produce lovely, lovely wool that can be spun into pretty yarn that can be knitted into nice warm socks and sweaters and things. Or felted into interesting hats or cat toys. Go sheep!

  2. I don’t really have strong feelings one way or another. My introduction to the Chinese zodiac used various terms interchangeably in the same descriptions, so I never really thought about one being more “correct” over another, and even the family that runs the Chinese restaurant I frequent doesn’t even use the same term through the family (though I love the owner’s granddaughter’s term, “Year of the Goatsheeps”).

  3. Frederick Pagliarulo on

    Year of the Ram sounds the coolest, by far, but let’s go with Sheep, which includes Rams, Ewes, and Lambs. Might as well be inclusive, so no one feels left out.

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