Not exactly rice cake … but nagi rice!!!

A rice cake, baked annually according to tradition, on Wednesday portended serious bad luck for 2009.

Mandala Mochi Uranai (Mandala rice cake fortune-telling) dates back to the Muromachi Period (1338-1573) and is held in this city’s Kodaki district each January.

Men born in years of the Ox, which is the Chinese zodiac sign for this year, made a round rice cake of about 50 centimeters in diameter. They then placed a sheet of paper on the rice cake and burned it.

After the flames subsided, the cake was flipped over and cracks on the bottom appeared.

If a large crack appears, the year’s luck is believed to be bad.

This year, extremely big cracks, of a size seen only once every 100 years, appeared in at least three places.

From Asahi

Wonder if 2009 is really going to be a bad year?