Friday, February 29, 2008


I am not a leap year person who come into the world on the 29 of February but if I am I would be jumping with excitement for alas after an absence of four years I have come to see again my birth date. Whereas others celebrate theirs annually the leap year jumpers have to wait for that occurrence. Would that make them younger than others ? Still be aware that not every fourth year is a leap year.
Today we also celebrate an extra day of the year 2008. Really! How much do we know about this special occasion? A look up, reveal many interesting aspects about this peculiarity.
Why a leap year? Needed to keep our calendar in alignment with the earth's revolutions around the sun. As a start it is a year with an extra day. Commonly it is 365 days , now it is 366 days. It seems however the Gregorian Year defines three criteria:-
i. every year that is divisible by 4
ii. however those years, if it can be divided by 100 is not a leap year unless
iii. the year is divisible by 400. Then it is a leap year
By that calculation 1800,1900,2100,2200,2300 and 2500 are not leap years. Yet 2000 and 2400 are accorded leap years.
Leap Year traditions have it that back in Ireland ( 5th Century) and Scotland (1288) when rules of courtship were strict and proper, it was permitted for females to propose marriages during the leap year for having waited too long for the men to propose. For refusal the man had to pay compensation. Of course this rule does not apply now. It is opened either way.
In 2008 observe that February begins and ends with Friday. Therefore there are FIVE Fridays in the month. Between 1904 and 2096 , the leap years that share the same day of the week for each date repeat only every 28 years. The most recent time when February comprised FIVE Fridays was in 1980, the next occurrence would be in 2036.
Last but not least, we are made to know that the chances of being born in leap year is 1:1461 and only 0.0684% of the world's populace are leapers.
If you are ONE imagine the extra ordinariness and uniqueness that comes with it. My congratulation and many happy returns to all the leapers. Maybe it will come about when the leapers may demand for a public holiday on such a day.
One thing I am certain is that the General Election Day for voters to cast their votes is 8 days away.Come 8 March 2008 we will know who will form the government and thankfully all the banners and posters will disappear for a cleaner country side .
What will this leap year bring us the non leapers? It has brought us goodness.

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