By Jocelyn Moore
Northwest Asian Weekly
Way back when China’s Jade Emperor held the Great Race to determine the 12 Chinese zodiac animals, three animals stood before a river that separated them from the finish line. The monkey, who wittily picked out lengthy branches as makeshift paddles, helped the sheep and the rooster cross the river on a raft together and claimed ninth place.
As the star of 2016, the monkey is said to be adventurous, brilliant, adaptable, vivacious, and driven — traits shared by many famous people.
Athletic and agile
Monkeys are known for their athletic abilities. Retired Houston Rockets center Yao Ming and two-time Olympic medalist figure skater Michelle Kwan have demonstrated great agility in their respective fields. Even the 11-year-old LeBron James Jr. has shown natural talent in basketball as a gifted passer, just like his father.
Outspoken and forward-thinking
Having foresight and being outspoken are qualities shared by many female monkey leaders.
Eleanor Roosevelt was a lifelong advocate of civil rights for Black Americans, Asian Americans, women, and refugees. Tsai Ing-wen, the first female president of Taiwan who will take office this May, attended the largest gay pride parade in Taiwan last year in support of marriage equality. Both leaders stood firmly by controversial stances of their respective times.
Driven and adaptable
Determination and adaptability are essential qualities to get to the top of the rollercoaster ride that is Hollywood. From romantic comedies and dramas, to thrillers, Tom Hanks has gone through an array of roles since the 1970s to becoming an award-winning actor. Notably, when he spotted a student’s ID card in Central Park recently, he went to extra lengths to track down the student by launching a viral campaign on Twitter.
Monkeys are also well-known for their sense of humor and diverse interests. Jason Segel is a freelance wedding minister when he is not busy acting. He officiated a wedding ceremony in 2010 after a couple placed ‘help wanted’ pictures of him in his hometown. Also, Channing Tatum was a stripper before he was an actor. His exhibitionist streak is a prized quality in many monkeys.
It should not be a surprise that monkeys are funky folks. Zooey Deschanel, Justin Timberlake, Miley Cyrus, and Celine Dion have all earned the spotlight in the music industry with their ability to sing, dance, and/or act.
Creativity is an undeniable trait among monkeys. From the legendary artist Leonardo da Vinci to illusionist David Copperfield, monkeys have amazed crowds of their time with new ideas and creations.
Finally, many monkeys are incredibly good-looking. Ryan Gosling and Jake Gyllenhaal have won over the hearts of many with their bedazzling charms. And who could forget Elizabeth Taylor, a goddess of her time and married eight times to seven different men. She also said the famous quote, “Big girls needs big diamonds.” She had the jewelry collection to back it up. She’s a wicked example of what good looks (and creativity and talent and outspokenness) can do. (end)
Jocelyn Moore can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.