Friday, 26 February 2016

Leap Day 29th February 2016

Famous "Leaplings" Rebecca Johnson, Rossini, Sabato Jr, Ja Rule

My niece, composer Rossini, actor Antonio Sabato Jr and rapper Ja Rule are all looking forward to next Monday (Feb 29th)

Rebecca Jade Johnson was born on February 29th, a Leap Day, along with the others in the above picture. “Leapers” or “Leaplings” have an official birthday only every 4 years – what a bummer!! Or, does the rare circumstance give Rebecca a sense of being super-special since her birthday only happens when the calendar has to be disrupted and tamed because astronomical forces are gravitationally stretching the earth’s orbit? Does she sleep on Leap Day’s Eve knowing her birthday has cosmic significance? That it is bending to the will of Julius Caesar from around 2000 years ago when he started to invent the modern Western calendar in order to control the sprawling Roman Empire?

365.242

There are 365.242 days in each orbit of the sun. I think primary school children should be taught that number from now on, as well as the fact that Leap Days will be missing from some future years, for example 2100, 2200 and 2300, but not missing from the year 2400 for mathematical reasons that are way too complicated for me to understand.

Marriage Proposals

On Leap Day, of course, there are likely to be marriage proposals from women (unlike any other time because normally it is against the law for women to propose to men!!) Men who say “no” to women who propose on Leap Day suffer dire consequences: in Finland men who turn down women offering them engagement rings on Leap Day have to buy lots of skirt fabric for the disappointed lady; in Scotland men have to offer a present of leather gloves and hand over one pound; in continental Europe the “fine” is 12 pairs of gloves!
Marriage Proposals and Eddie the Eagle taking a LEAP!

To Leap

To Leap Into The Dark, To Take A Leap of Faith, Look Before You Leap. Leap is a useful word for imaginative expressions that all involve making a big jump into a new place, crossing from one place to another place, going where you have never dared before. At New Year we make resolutions for the year ahead. Perhaps on Leap Day we should begin a Four Year Plan. Where will we all be four years from now? Will I still be writing this blog? Watch this space!
A Leap of Faith