Creative Problem Solver. Programmer. Bodysurfing. Sometime Comics.
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Have I ever posted on Leap Day?

I genuinely don’t know. There have been 5 since I started the site. 2004. 2008. 2012. 2016. 2020.

And today is Leap Day and I already posted today.

Have I ever posted on Leap Day?

Let’s write a WordPress shortcode and find out!

 * Expect [on_this_day month="February" day="29"]
 * Both month and day are required
 * And return an ordered list of posts from that day grouped by year
 * @param $atts
 * @param $content
 * @param $tag
 */ function ( $atts, $content, $tag ) {
    $atts = shortcode_atts([
       'month' => '',
       'day' => '',
    ], $atts, $tag);
    $month = $atts['month'];
    $day = $atts['day'];
    if (empty($month) || empty($day)) {
    // if month is non-numeric, convert it to a number
    if (!is_numeric($month)) {
       $month = date('m', strtotime($month));
    // and the same with the day...
    if (!is_numeric($day)) {
       $day = date('d', strtotime($day));
    $args = [
       'post_type' => 'post',
       'post_status' => 'publish',
       'posts_per_page' => -1,
       'date_query' => [
          'month' => $month,
          'day' => $day,
       'orderby' => 'date',
       'order' => 'ASC',
    $posts = get_posts($args);
    $posts_by_year = [];
    foreach ($posts as $post) {
       $year = get_the_date('Y', $post);
       $posts_by_year[$year][] = $post;
    $output = '';
    foreach ($posts_by_year as $year => $year_posts) {
       $output .= sprintf('<dt>%s</dt>', $year);
       foreach ($year_posts as $post) {
          $output .= sprintf('<dd><a href="%s">%s</a></dd>',
    return '<dl class="on-this-day" >' . $output . '</dl>';


I add that code to my theme. And now, when I add to a page or post with a shortcode that specifies a month and a day, like so…

[on_this_day month="February" day="29"]

…I get output like this:

Mr. Bird
Gravatar WordPress verification for self-hosted WordPress
Have I ever posted on Leap Day?

So before today, I posted once on 29 February. In 2008. I’m surprised! That was fun.

Since it’s Leap Day it’s also Delete Your Drafts Day. I deleted 3 lingering drafts I will not miss. I turned 1 into a post which will publish tomorrow. So there are 4 drafts, which is good enough for me. I wrote about my odd schedule for checking on drafts last week if you care to read it.

Happy Leap Day!

Unrelated goofiness: ‘30 Rock’ Co-Creator Tells The Story Behind Leap Day Williams Watch the weirdness and check it out on Nestflix.

P.S. is there a WordPress shortcode you wish existed? What would it be?

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