8 Really Wimpy Sick Day Excuses

sickHave you ever called in sick to work because of your period? In CafeMom's Newcomer's Club group, one member was dumbfounded that an employee at her husband's business called in sick because it was That Time.

As it turns out, some women have an absolutely brutal time of it during their periods, and many posters chimed in to say they had called in sick to work and school because of heavy cramps or bleeding.

The whole discussion got me thinking: What should you never ever try to call in sick for?     

Here's my list of really wimpy excuses for shirking your daily duties at work:


1). Hangover. Seriously, people, do the crime, do the time, and that includes sitting in a meeting thinking you're actually, genuinely going to die if that annoying girl from accounting does not stop talking NOW and worrying that you're actually sweating margarita. The only possible exception is if you're still a little bit drunk when it's time to go to work ... and if that's the case, you might think about making AA your next call.

2) Stayed up too late watching a movie/reading a book. I understand, I am one of you, the sisterhood of those who suddenly look at the clock and think "CRAP!!" But this isn't college, and an all-nighter finishing the latest Jonathan Franzen is not an excuse to skip your 8 o'clock.

3) Having had a really crappy day the day before. Oh, I've been there ... you have a run-in with your evil boss or an unpleasant interaction with a customer, you go home and apply your medicine of choice (exercise, a bowl of ice cream, a beer ... or all three, in my case), and you wake up the next day thinking you cannot possibly face showing up at the office. Again, this is another case of putting on your big-girl panties and dealing ... but I wouldn't fault you for using your lunch hour to surf HotJobs.

4) Having a deadline on a freelance project. Always a bad idea. Budget your time such that the people who pay your FICA get first priority.

5) To extend a vacation or a holiday. Once, back when I was a fresh-out-of-college cub reporter, I was working at a paper where it was just me and an editor (who was a not-at-all-evil and actually kind of awesome boss). She took the week between Christmas and New Year's off, and I had to lay out the paper and check page proofs by myself. This was the first time my big boss (also awesome) had trusted me with this and I really, really wanted to do a great job.

And then I got a stomach flu. A disgusting, horrible stomach flu. I called in and offered to do as much as I could from home ... this was in the old days before PDFs and email, so that wasn't much. My boss clearly didn't believe me, and when I dragged myself in a day later to the production facility, literally four different people came by to have a look at me and said, "Wow, you really are sick" in a tone of great surprise. And then I puked on their shoes (no, I didn't, but I wish I had). The upshot? Unless you're too sick to move and look it, drag yourself in on those days, because no one's going to believe you're sick anyway.

6) To attend a concert, sporting event, etc. It's an almost ironclad guarantee that whatever you do, you will wind up on television or run into your boss. This includes events in other states ... blow off work to drive to Chicago for a day game at Wrigley, and you will end up on ESPN just as your boss is flipping through the channels on her way to the Lifetime Network.

7) The sex. Your partner gets back from a business trip, you missed him/her, the kids are packed off to school, and the bed beckons. Actually, this one might not be so bad ...

8) The baby kept you up. It's been a long time since I've been up all night with a baby (and now I'm totally jinxing myself putting that out there for all the world to see ... cue 2-year-old double ear infection in three ... two ... one), and when I have been, I just thanked the heavens I worked at home. Those mornings when the alarm goes off and you start to cry because you got a grand total of 45 minutes of sleep are awful, no question. But they're also not what sick days are for. If you absolutely cannot face being at work in such a sleep-deprived condition, beg for a vacation or personal day instead.

What's the most creative excuse you have heard (or used) for calling in sick?


Image via BLW Photography/Flickr

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