Posted by: Loren Coleman on February 29th, 2008
Today is one of the rare events in human time-space history, a catch-up day, February 29th. Happy Sadie Hawkins Day!
According to English law, February 29th was ignored and had no legal status. Therefore, it was the one day when women could ask someone to marry them. This practice was first documented in 1288, when Scotland passed a law that allowed women to propose marriage to the man of their choice in that year. They also made it law that any man who declined a proposal in a leap year must pay a fine, such as a kiss to money for clothing.
In the USA, this custom translated the Old World leap year tradition into today’s “Sadie Hawkins Day,” when women can chase single men and propose marriage to them. The character of “Sadie Hawkins” existed in the old Al Capp cartoon strip Li’l Abner and was first mentioned there on November 13, 1937. (Today, Sadie Hawkins Day is celebrated in some quarters annually.)
Nancy Lucas Art
A person who was born on February 29 may be called a “leapling.” There is even an online magazine to celebrate them, LeapZine. However, leaplings are not to be confused with “changelings.” A changeling is the offspring of a fairy, troll, elf or other legendary creature that has been secretly left in the place of a human child.
Anniversaries and birthdays happening today are usually only celebrated once every four years in Western calendars (with the exception of century years not divisible by 400, such as 1900).
Some anniversaries are odd. Take for example, February 29, 1504, when Christopher Columbus used his knowledge of a lunar eclipse that night to convince First Nations people to provide him with supplies.
Is today the anniversary of any February 29th cryptid sightings?
Do you know of any that have occurred on this date?
Here is one.
A rather famous unknown hominoid sighting did take place on this day, near the Settlers Park area in Oakdale, Pennsylvania.
On February 29, 1976, residents of that section of Oakdale reported seeing two Bigfoot-appearing creatures, upright and seemingly 7 to 8 feet tall. The Eastern Sasquatch look-a-likes were dark haired beasts, sighted during the daytime.
The area had been thrown in turmoil the day before following a power failure, with some kind of electromagnetic event, and strange light being seen over Settlers Park. Although there was no link between the strange incidents on February 28th and the Bigfoot sightings on the 29th, down through the years, various writers have casually tied one with the other.
So, inquiring minds have to ask, if one of those Bigfoot had caught an eyewitness, would the Sasquatch have asked for the human’s hand in marriage?