Support for LAist comes from
Made of L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.


Happy Leap Day!

Support your source for local news!
The local news you read here every day is crafted for you, but right now, we need your help to keep it going. In these uncertain times, your support is even more important. Today, put a dollar value on the trustworthy reporting you rely on all year long. We can't hold those in power accountable and uplift voices from the community without your partnership. Thank you.

It's February 29th -- Happy Leap Day! While others are pondering mysteries like "what happens to a baby born on February 29th?" and "Does this have anything to do with last night's episode of 'Lost'?", we're going to take the opportunity to teach you a shiny new word! It's called intercalation, and it's what Julius Caesar did back in the day to fix the wacky Roman calendar system: inserting extra units of time (in our case, one day at the end of February) into the regular calendar to make up for that 1/4 day imbalance in our time measurement system.

The Romans used to be very lazy about their time-keeping, and would stick a whole extra month into their calendar every so often to even things out. Then Julius Caesar starting running the show, and he was like "Whaaaaat up people, can't we be a little more precise here? We're freakin' Romans, for Jupiter's sake." So he and some astronomers put the calary-smack down, invented Leap Year, and in the process, named a month after himself (July).

In the spirit of being totally arbitrary, then, you can celebrate Leap Day by getting a free hot dog at Pink's this morning, starting at 9:30am. They're giving away a dog to the first 500 people today and tomorrow to promote the Farrelly Brothers' new TV show, so get down there and intercalate a hot dog into your day.

Support for LAist comes from

Learn more about Leap Year and the Julian Calendar at Wired Magazine.

Most Read