You can convert the date to Japanese ETO (干支) and Jikkan (十干) .
-------- What's ETO --------------
"Hey, several years ago, I loved a Japanese woman. I loved her very much. My father and my mother who had come from Germany and Italy said why I loved a Japanese girl. They said that there were a lot of girls in United States and Italy and Germany. But I loved my Japanese girl. One day, that's a new year's day, my little J-girl sent a Happy new year card to me. I read it and I was very shocked. Though she had said that I was her tiger, she wrote a illustration of a rabbit! A rabbit with glasses! That's my nickname in my junior high school days. I didn't tell her my old nickname. But she got it from somewhere. She broke my heart."
"The year that you lost the love is 1999?"
"Yeah, that's right! Do you have any supernatural power?"
"No, ha-ha! Your J-girl wrote a rabbit in a Happy New Year's card, then I knew the year. The rabbit is one of the animals of ETO. The rabbit she wrote doesn't mean 'you'. ETO is a Japanese old calendar. It came from China through Korea to Japan, 1,500 years ago. ETO has 3 styles: Chinese style and Korean style and Japanese style. She said a happy new year to you in a Japanese traditional Style."
"Traditional style? Rabbit WITH GLASSES? The rabbit WITH GLASSES was written by Japanese MANGA style. I think MANGA is not a Japanese traditional style."
"Yes, Manga is not a Japanese traditional style. But a rabbit on a New Year greetings card is a Japanese traditional style. Japanese people uses a traditional style with a vogue style. In Japan, traditional styles and the latest fashions are coexisting. Your J-girl said she'd like to live the year happily with you."
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