Taiwan NTNU professor launches heartwarming ‘4199’ event on April Fool's Day

Instead of an April Fool's day prank, one professor launched a heartwarming campaign for April 1

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Jerry Hsia has launched the event two years ago. (Photo courtesy Jerry Hsia Facebook)

Jerry Hsia has launched the event two years ago. (Photo courtesy Jerry Hsia Facebook)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Instead of an April Fool's day prank, the head of the Graduate Institute of Performing Arts at National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU), Jerry Hsia (夏學理), has launched a heartwarming campaign titled “4199” (思憶久久) online, with the goal of encouraging people to express their inner feelings to their loved ones at 9:09 a.m or p.m, on April 1.

The number “41” (思憶) is pronounced in Mandarin with a sound similar to the phrase of “Missing you,” while “99” (久久) sounds similar to“for a long time.” On April 1, Jerry wanted to share the memory of loved ones with those who have also felt the loss of family members, which ld to the idea of launching the event.

Jerry explained that he has witnessed the death of his grandmother, older sister, younger sister and father within the past ten years. He misses them all deeply and feels that it was too early and extremely difficult to lose them.

Additionally, Jerry dislikes the tradition and history of April Fool's Day in the West, which originated from the 15th century. Jerry also pointed out that the phenomena of the trolls and the fools on the internet attacking people needs to be stopped.

So Jerry decided to start a different kind of April 1 tradition.

Jerry believes that the beauty of Eastern culture can help people to conquer the difficulties nowadays, if people try harder to express their love for loved ones on April 1 at 9:09 a.m or p.m sharp.

Many people joined the activity by creating images with the caption “4199” in numbers or Chinese characters. They have shared the images via social media to express their love and longing for missing family members.