Friday, 29 February 2008
The Ladies Privilege
Day 3, post 3. Undacova is smokin'!
Apparently, there is an old wives tale regarding February 29th.
February 29th is known as The Ladies Privilege day, and as is the case with most old wives tales, there are a number of explanations for its origins flying around. Here are a few:
St. Bridget's Complaint
It is believed this tradition was started in 5th century Ireland when St. Bridget complained to St. Patrick about women having to wait for so long for a man to propose. According to legend, St. Patrick said the yearning females could propose on this one day in February during the leap year.
February 29th in English Law
According to English law, February 29th was ignored and had no legal status. Folks assumed that traditions would also have no status on that day. It was also reasoned that since the leap year day existed to fix a problem in the calendar, it could also be used to fix an old and unjust custom that only let men propose marriage.
The first documentation of this practice dates back to 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. The fine could range from a kiss to payment for a silk dress or a pair of gloves
Sadie Hawkins Day
In the United States, some people have referred to this date as Sadie Hawkins Day with women being given the right to run after unmarried men to propose.
Sadie Hawkins was a female character in the Al Capp cartoon strip Li'l Abner. Many communities prefer to celebrate Sadie Hawkins Day in November which is when Al Capp first mentioned Sadie Hawkins Day.
I suppose my question to Men is this - how would you feel if a Woman proposed marriage to you? I don't mean if a woman asked you out on a date. I mean proposed marriage, which presupposes that a relatively advanced relationship is already in place (it would be freaky otherwise, of course and you'd be justified in telling the woman to buzz off!). I really hope no one brings up that whole hunter-gatherer crap (yes...that is the technical, anthropological term) whereby men will not appreciate something unless they work for it...yada, yada, yada cos that just makes me yaaaaaaaaaaawn.
And my question to my Ladies is this - would you propose marriage to a man on Ladies Privilege day, or any other day for that matter? Again, i stress the distinction between asking one out on a date and proposing marriage.