On December 25 this year, the famous Chinese actor Xu Jinjiang posted a Weibo post that well described Xu Jinjiang’s understanding of Chinese Christmas. The contents of the Weibo are translated as follows:
Because of the Chinese pronunciation (Christmas Eve pronunciation “Ping’An’Ye”, Apple pronunciation “Ping’Guo”), Apple is endowed with the meaning of peace (safe pronunciation “Ping’An”), just like oranges and successes (oranges pronounce “Cheng’Zi”, successful pronunciation “Cheng’Gong”), persimmon and everything goes well (persimmon pronounces “Shi’Zi”, “everything goes well”sounds “Shi’Shi’Ru’Yi”), magpies and happy things (magpies pronounce “Xi’Que”, happy things pronounce “Xi’Shi”), this is a part of Chinese culture.
The homonym of words brings a symbol of auspiciousness, which is a kind of humanistic care in a psychological sense. Therefore, Apple and Christmas Eve have become Christmas with Chinese characteristics, and we have given this holiday an oriental color.
Perhaps for a long time, Westerners will be very curious about why Chinese people send apples to each other on Christmas Eve, but only when they understand the pronunciation and meaning of Chinese words can they know the reason, which leads to the collision and blending of cultures. It’s a very interesting thing, and it makes a lot of sense.
My interpretation of Aobai and Panther Head Patrol to become China’s Santa Claus is also a feature of Internet culture. Aobai (pronounced “Ao’Bai”) has a homonym with the English “All Buy”. However, the Chinese meaning of “All Buy” means “I want it all”, which is a line from another character (Panther Head). This fragmented patchwork and coincidence is also part of the Internet culture, reflecting not only people’s love for my characters but also the ridicule of unlimited material desires in the consumer era. So, as if I had been blessed by luck, I inexplicably became the Chinese version of Santa Claus, red hat and white beard-these features were described correctly and coincided with my character.
“send peace, can All Buy”, peace and wealth, this eastern-style new Christmas Eve, let Santa Claus and the God of Wealth become one and become a new trend for us to welcome the New year at the end of the year.
Xu Jinjiang’s Weibo post, which patiently and carefully interprets several ingenious merges between Chinese culture and Christmas, has been well received on Weibo and has received more than 30, 000 retweets and more than 170,000 comments in just two days. This kind of praise is not only because Xu Jinjiang’s Weibo content is interesting and exquisite, but also because China is facing a slightly contradictory background.
China has a large population, and like most big countries with a long history, there are always a small number of people who have a particularly strong national self-esteem, which gives rise to some conceit and inferiority complex. Many years ago, some Chinese people did not like other Chinese people to celebrate festivals from foreign countries, and Christmas is a typical example-although in the vast majority of cases, the celebration of these festivals is not significantly affected.
But in recent years, around 2017, to be exact, similar national sentiment has intensified as a result of a series of discrimination and crackdowns by the Trump administration against China. In 2017 and 2018, under the pressure of a lot of public opinions, Christmas celebrations were obviously reduced, and the festive atmosphere became relatively desolate. But since then, most Chinese, especially Chinese consumers, have recognized the reality and found that this boycott of foreign festivals is meaningless, and Christmas has once again become a joyous holiday.
In addition to national sentiment, some people think that it is not appropriate to celebrate a religious festival in a secular country like China. This voice is also nonsense in the eyes of most people, but in a few institutions, such as universities, holiday celebrations are suppressed at the official level because religion is a relatively sensitive topic. Of course, if students are willing to celebrate Christmas, no one will limit it. In fact, most of the students in China love this festival very much.