[ The Rat Personality ] [ The Rat Child ]

The Rat year is a year of plenty, bringing opportunity and good prospects. It will be marked by speculation and fluctuations in the prices of commodities and the stock market; the world economy in general will boom. Business will be on the upswing, fortunes can be made and it will be an easy time to accumulate wealth. However, this is also the time to make long-term investment plans as the bonanza the year of the Rat brings will serve to see us through the bleak years that may follow. All ventures begun at this time will be successful if one prepares well. But do not take chances or unnecessary risks: the year of the Rat is still ruled by the cold of winter and the darkness of night. Those who speculate indiscriminately and overextend themselves will come to a sad reckoning.

On the whole, this will be a happier year than most: free from explosive events and wars and with far less catastrophes than, say, the years of the Tiger or the Dragon.

Nonetheless, it will be spicy. It promises a lot of bickering, bargaining and petty arguments that will do little harm. A congenial time that will find most of us socializing and enjoying ourselves.


The charm of the Rat personality is as universally known and loved as the Walt Disney character, Mickey Mouse. He could be forthright and honest but in such a disarming manner that you find yourself at a disadvantage.

Remarkably easy to get along with, hard working and thrifty, he will be generous only to those he is inordinately fond of, so if you get an expensive gift from him, you should certainly rate yourself high in his esteem. However, in spite of his penny-pinching ways, he will never be found wanting for admirers as he emits such fantastic appeal.

On the surface, a Rat person may appear reserved, but this is not so. He is never as quiet as he may look. Actually, he is easily agitated but is able to maintain his self-control, which explains why he is so popular and has a multitude of friends.

The Rat person is usually a bright, happy and sociable personality. Occasionally, you may come across a supercritical or grouchy, fault-finding one. But on the whole, he enjoys parties and other large gatherings. He will endeavor to join exclusive clubs and as a rule can always be found in a close circle of friends or fellow conspirators. He likes getting involved and is very outgoing.

The Rat really cherishes his friends, associates and family relations; at times he gets entangled with other people's lives and affairs because he can't easily rid himself of strong emotional attachments once he has made them. Still, one can never be exactly sure of how and where he stands. His capacity to love can only be overruled by his shrewdness and love of money.

A Rat boss may demonstrate great concern about whether his employees are getting enough exercise or eating a balanced diet. In his heart, he sincerely cares about their welfare; he will visit them when they are sick and make their problems his problems, yet when it comes to giving them that well-deserved raise in salary, he will hedge and be a little stingy. A lot of arm-twisting and collective bargaining is needed when it comes to parting a Rat from his money.

The Rat lady may continually amaze you by being a model of frugality. She is forever distributing old clothes, recycling toys, buying or selling secondhand items, stretching meals, leftovers and the family budget until they could positively scream. However, she may not care to apply these same rigid standards when dealing with her precious offspring. If her children know how to get around her, she will find it hard to deny them anything. Rat people are rarely tightwads where their families are concerned.

At times, the Rat is decidely clannish. Maybe there is some truth about safety in numbers. He never worries about having another mouth to feed and may allow his relatives, in-laws, friends, etc., to stick around his home and live off him. Why? Because the crafty Rat will always be able to find something for them to do to earn their keep. Laggards, professional bums and freeloaders will all get put to work swiftly in his household. Charity has its limits. Trust the efficient Rat.

The Rat native keeps his secrets well but he can be an expert at weeding other people's gardens where confidences are concerned. He has few qualms about using vital information gathered or capitalizing on the mistakes of others. After all, you certainly don't expect him to ignore the knock of opportunity, especially when he has had his ear glued to the door so much of the time.

As much as he likes to keep his feelings to himself, one can always tell when he is upset as he tends to become edgy, curt and impertinent. Some are just absolute nags. Since the Rat person is also active and most industrious, he is irritated most by idleness and waste.

On his negative side, the Rat person loves to gossip, criticize, compare, carp and bargain--usually over unimportant issues. He buys things he does not really need and is always taken in by bargains. Maybe it is his accumulative urge. Mementos, souvenirs and hoards of sentimental junk will be found tucked away in his room and in his heart. He also has the tendency to be the neighborhood's busybody, though more often than not, his intentions are good.

The Rat is reputed to make an excellent writer and this is not surprising at all. He makes it a point to know practically everything about everyone in town. He keeps tabs, has an uncanny eye for detail, a good memory and is incredibly inquisitive.

The native of this year will be successful in whatever he chooses to do because like his sign, the Rat, he will adapt himself to the situation at hand. He has the ability to cope with difficulties and is at his best during a crisis. Levelheaded and alert, he possesses keen intuition, foresight and business acumen. Adversity merely serves to sharpen his wits and he is always busy cooking up some scheme.

There is no need to worry about the Rat's safety as he always checks out the back door before entering any transaction. This is in case he has to make a quick or untimely exit from the scene. Self-preservation is high on his list of priorities and he usually takes the path with the least repercussions. If you want to get out of trouble fast, follow the Rat's course. He has a built-in alarm and defense mechanism that rarely fails.

His stumbling block is over-ambition. He tries to do too much too soon and as a result scatters his energies. If he can avoid doing this and perseveres in finishing what he's started, a person of this sign will end up wealthy, which is just as well, as the Rat loves money!

Although the Rat is equipped with an inborn ability to sense danger and therefore should know when to stop, he often has great difficulty in relying on his own sound judgment because he simply cannot pass up bargains and so-called "good deals." Alas, he ends up falling into the same old trap. He will have no problems in life if only he can conquer his greed and quit while he is ahead. In his lifetime, the covetous Rat has to suffer at least one large financial blow before he learns that avarice does not pay off. However, it is most unlikely to find a poor Rat native, and if you do, well, with his resourcefulness, you can bet he will not remain poor for long. It will be totally out of character if he hasn't got a nest egg hidden away somewhere.

Being the true sentimentalist of the Chinese cycle, the Rat is not only deeply attached to his children but to his elders as well. Parents with children born in this year can be sure that they will be well regarded and cared for by them. Unlike the Dragon child, who may demand perfection of his parents, the Rat youngster will have infinite trust in his parents, cater to their needs and overlook their shortcomings.

Aside from doting on their children and husbands, the Rat mother revels in the fact that she is a superb homemaker. She will follow her husband's career development like his campaign manager, drive the children to piano, ballet and violin lessons and take on so much social activity that your head would spin. A husband belonging to this sign, on the other hand, can be found helping out with household chores and will like to spend his holidays and weekends with the family.

The time of birth plays an important role in the Rat's way of life. Needless to say, one born in the evening will have a more hectic and strenuous life (night Rats have to scurry around constantly in search for food) than his brother born during the quiet of the day.

The Rat person will be attracted to the people of the Ox sign, whom he finds strong, reliable and appreciative of the devotion he has to offer. Equally compatible with the Rat will be the mighty people of the Dragon year. He will also find the Snake attractive and intelligent, and may make a suitable alliance with him. He is captivated by power and brilliance, so the Rat will always fall for the irresistible Monkey. He agrees with the clever Monkey's way of doing things and the Monkey, on the other hand, will be overjoyed to find the Rat on his own cunning wavelength. Tiger, Dog, Boar or another Rat person will have no trouble teaming up with a Rat.

He will come into many conflicts with persons born in the Horse sign. The Horse is just too independent and changeable for the clannish Rat. It would also be unwise for him to marry the Rooster. The Rooster, being the intrepid dreamer, will exasperate the practical Rat no end. A marriage with the Sheep is also questionable; the indulgent Sheep will probably squander the Rat's hard-earned savings.

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A child born in the year of the Rat will be sweet and loving. He may be shy, but inwardly he is fiercely competitive. Often, he resorts to crying to get more attention and usually clings to one or two people with whom he identifies. Although he has a charming disposition, he is possessive of parents and friends and jealous of attention given to others.

He will talk early. He likes to eat (mention of his favorite foods always makes him light up) and he takes an early interest in cooking and other household chores. Being affectionate and demonstrative, he will not like being left alone. He will enjoy group play, can concentrate on detailed work and make friends easily. You can depend on him to keep things tidy or at least know where they are.

The Rat child will start to show his calculating nature very early in life. He will insist that he get the bigger half of the apple, exactly the same number of cookies as his older brother (preferably more, but under no circumstances less). It will be hard to cheat him on anything. He learns fast and never misses a trick. He takes regular stock of his possessions--so don't try to give away any of his old toys thinking he won't miss it. Then again, if you consult him, be prepared for a struggle as the selfish little Rat won't part with anything easily.

With younger children, the Rat child will tend to be motherly; at his worst, he will boss them around mercilessly. Given the proper encouragement, he will be ambitious in school. He will be most eager to participate in anything that stimulates his sharp mental powers.

The vivacious Rat will be an avid reader. He will learn the importance of the written word early and be able to express himself well. Many of the world's greatest writers and historians were born in the year of the Rat.

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