So, I decided to do something. But what? An evening Facebook post asking for advice yielded silly responses and a general consensus that I should just come up with something. Thanks guys. :/ So I stayed up late into the night (barely midnight) and did some intensive and extensive research (a quick wikipedia scan).
A tradition called Ladies privilege in which, "...it is a tradition that women may propose marriage...on leap years."
Supposedly, a 1288 law by Queen Margaret of Scotland (then age five and living in Norway), required that fines be levied if a marriage proposal was refused by the man; compensation ranged from a kiss to £1 to a silk gown, in order to soften the blow.And finally this:
'The Maydes Metamorphosis,' has it that 'this is leape year/women wear breeches.' A few hundred years later, breeches wouldn't do at all: Women looking to take advantage of their opportunity to pitch woo were expected to wear a scarlet petticoat—fair warning, if you will."
So with this meager amount of information I came up with four NEW Leap-Year-Day traditions. Ready?
1. Wear something red.
If I owned a red petticoat, I would definitely be sporting it today. But I don't so...
2. If you are single, ask random men to marry you.
When they refuse you, demand they pay the fine.
3. If you are married you are allowed to wear your wedding dress all day.
Even if it doesn't fit anymore you are permitted to do this without fear of ridicule today. No more of this "It's a dress you'll only wear once" bologna.
4. Do something absurd.
Back in the day, women asking men to marry and frolicking around in breeches was absurd. It's not so absurd today, women are probably asking men to marry them all day, every day (directly or indirectly), so I've decided that ANYTHING absurd will do. Just as April Fool's day - one of my favorite holidays - is all about committing silly pranks on others, Leap-Year-Day should be about doing ridiculous things for yourself. It's only fair.
So what am I doing today? Well my one-year-old is wearing polka dots and stripes TOGETHER. Preposterious! My four-year-old has resolutely outfitted our German Shepard with hair-bows. Ridiculous! And I petitioned my husband to stay home from work today. ...A little TOO absurd, he left twenty minutes ago.
I'm making a list of some more silly things I could do. If I had balloons I'd tape a bunch of them to my car and drive around blasting 99 Red Balloons and waving to onlookers. But I used all my balloons on my kid's birthday party. *sigh*
Even if you don't actually get around to it, what crazy things are you going to do today? This is important, people. We need a list for future generations to work with. GO!