Monday, February 29, 2016

Leap Into Some Love

I had been researching for an article on Leap Years and Leap Days, when the beauty of the concept struck me. Leap Days are days which exist lesser than the other days. These are days which go unnaccounted for. If you're working today, you're working without pay. If you were born today, you'll have to bank on either 28th February or 1st March as the official day you came into existence. Facebook will have nothing to show you today, unless from a really far off past.

And best of all, if you're forming memories today, you cannot mark an annual anniversary for them. Which makes the nostalgia invisible, or eternal.

Think about it. Today is a day you must obviously try and live more than the others, because, like I said, it will exist lesser than all the other days on the calendar. The scientific reason, of course, is to take care of the anomaly which arises between the calendar year and the solar year, but that reason makes no difference to my life. Despite this adjustment, there is still an error of timing left, which is adjusted by not counting multiples of 100 as Leap Years, unless they are multiples of 400 also. Too many numbers in there, and they still do not guarantee precision. Again, precision makes no difference to my existence, but reasons for forming formless memories do.

If you've seen the (quite disastrous) movie Leap Year, you would be aware of the Irish tradition where women could propose to men on a Leap Day, and fear no refusal. Some say, it is a day when no man is safe, because his denial may cost him a kiss, a silk dress, or a pair of gloves to be given to the lady who popped the question. This latter tradition, arguably, started in 13th century Scotland, when Queen Margaret decreed that on 29th February, a lady may unabashedly propose to any man she fancied. Rest assured, she won't go home empty handed.

It is quite apt, then, that the extra day be added to the month of love. No one really knows for sure why February was left with only 28 days in a calendar where all the other months boast of far more. There are legends, none with a strong grounding though. Leap Day gives this pretty month a chance at equality, just short of it though. And the more I think about this day of fleeting importance, the more its importance becomes apparent to me.

Even though modern existence robs most of us off the luxury of time, I'll still have a plan to utilise this extra day for moments, tasks and conversations which are too important to be archived. February 29th, in the modern idiom, should become the day where we all say out loud those things we've held onto for too long, without the fear of listener's judgement, or retaliation, or condescension. All those three are contemporary malaises, which deserve at least a day's bravery to cure. And if your brave admissions of love or longing (or desire, or any curbed feeling) are met with unpleasant reactions, there is always a kiss, a silk garment, or pile of books to ask for (because gloves really make no sense to our times).

There are times we push hard to make a moment happen, and then we wish it away because it turned out to be too unpleasant for our heart to digest. Congrats, here you have a day which you won't have to wish away, because it will not hit your calendar till it becomes a long lost memory, which, a leap of years later, you would only smile back with fondness over. At least I would. I like prolonging intense moments, by forming calendar memories of them. Today, I won't get to do that. It's my day to be brave, and yours too. If you've withheld a sentiment from me - inbox it right in! I have my most nonchalant self waiting to hear.

I really hope we make a tradition out of it. I would. In the personal utopia I have constructed with some kind people and kinder words. May Queen Margaret's decree be followed - a moment of love, or a bar of Silk, find your happiness either way, and then, if needed, forget the day ever existed :)

Live and let go, I believe, is a lovely motto for our age.


  1. This is cute 'extra day' thought!

  2. Absolutely brilliant. Language. Ideas. Existence. Layers. Nostalgia. Irony. Everyting.

    The most beautiful idea though, is the one where you suggest that time is a luxury these days and, if one could, one should make 29th of February an exception. Go out. Love people you want. Express it. Bring a smile or two.

    And most importantly hug people. There is no better feeling than a nothing-held-back-hug.

    I love you.
    The bachchas the yours.

  3. Such beautiful concept. Nicely put :)

  4. Such beautiful concept. Nicely put :)

  5. Hadn't given this day much thought until I read this :-) Thanks and much love!

  6. ITs very encouraging to see someone think of a day in a context that doesn't accommodate money, fame and ambitions but touches on human values, Thanks for the insight..