By Chris Gay
I’m not exactly certain about the origins of Leap Year, though my guess is that at some point or another, some King, Cardinal or Pope decided to muddle around with the calendar for some long forgotten, (or lazily un-researched) purpose.
Apparently a year’s actual duration is 365 days and 6 hours. So the end result is, with three exceptions every 400 years,* February gets an extra day every election cycle. How happy February must be.
According to the Book of Google, it was Caesar Augustus who poached a few days from the second month. He did so in order to add them to his namesake August; evidently so as not to feel inferior to his predecessor Julius Caesar, whose own month, July, contains 31 days. And things have remained the same ever since; probably because no Caesar Februarius ever came along.
It has been speculated too that Caesar Augustus did it because the following song, as originally sung: “30 days hath November; April, June and September. Oh yeah, and February,” simply sounded too clunky. Of course, that speculation was primarily done by me in an effort to extend this blog post by an extra paragraph. Whatever. You read it, didn’t you?
It is said that on Leap Day, it’s acceptable for a woman to propose marriage to her man. Actually, that is a pretty good idea. In fact if I ever get remarried and I’m the one proposed to, I hope whoever she is uses a reproduction of the New York Giants Super Bowl XLII Championship ring.
Although rarely discussed, Leap Year also mathematically influences weather prognostications when it puts in its quadrennial appearance. How? Because any shadow-seeing groundhogs inadvertently condemn us to six more weeks-and a day-of winter.
Leap Year’s Most Noteworthy Event
Though opinions may vary, it’s practically inarguable that the greatest Leap Year moment in all of recorded history came in 1980, when Gordie Howe, the legendary Mr. Hockey, scored his 800th career goal for my beloved Hartford Whalers. In fact, you know what? That is inarguable.
Benefits of Leap Year
Perhaps the greatest benefit Leap Year offers is that it provides yet another relatively obscure topic for comedy writers to blog on when they can’t think of anything better to write about.
* This fact may have been slightly researched, as I suck at math.
What if a late 20th Century Jack the Ripper tearing apart a small Connecticut town was the result of a pancake shop bet between God and the devil? Imagine if Satan’s impact on the world in the new millennium hinged entirely on one police officer’s skill in hunting down a ruthless killer…hiding in plain sight. Detective Danny Seabrook is an unwitting pawn in a divine chess match with immeasurable consequences for all mankind. Set primarily in 1995, this action-packed suspense thriller features clever dialogue, humor and romance-with an ending you will never forget.
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As the end draws near for long-retired Sherlock Holmes in Sussex Downs, he calls one last time for the company of his best friend and colleague, Dr. John Watson. What was meant to be four last days of camaraderie and reminiscing instead leads to the most shocking, explosive revelation both of the great detective’s career, and his life.
Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal is a Holmes tale like none other ever conceived. Fans of Baker Street’s legendary detective will be left with the insatiable need to contemplate its extraordinary conclusion forevermore.
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Chris Gay is an author, freelance writer, voice-over artist, broadcaster and actor. For 7 years he wrote and broadcast a daily, minute radio humor spot in Hartford, Connecticut. He’s been published nationally in Writer’s Digest and has written the paranormal, theological thriller novel Ghost of a Chance, Sherlock Holmes and the Final Reveal, (an original, extraordinary short story on the great detective with a spectacular twist) and four humor books: And That’s the Way It Was…Give or Take: A Daily Dose of My Radio Writings, Shouldn’t Ice Cold Beer Be Frozen? My 365 Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota, and The Bachelor Cookbook: Edible Meals with a Side of Sarcasm & Another Round of Ice Cold Beer: My 365 More Random Thoughts to Improve Your Life Not One Iota. He’s written and voiced radio commercials, authored both comedic and non-comedic freelance articles, scripts, press releases, website, media and technical content, done occasional radio color commentary for local sports, and acted in a couple of movies and plays. His website is chrisjgay.com, and his humor blog can be found at chrisgay.wordpress.com.
Hope Springs (Barfly)