Monday, 1 February 2010

I won't be in work today because my mother-in-law didn't die at the weekend as expected

Apparently today is National Sickie Day; the day of the year when most employees are likely to ring in and lie through their teeth about why they won't be in work.

Seems that 350,000 employees are expected to ring in and make their excuses today, and the likely cost to the economy could be in the region of £30 million.

According to the DailyTelegraph, part of the fault lies at the door of the weak and feeble managers who are too easily conned by employees who send in their pathetic excuses ("the road outside my house is too busy to cross") by e-mail and text. Seems in the good old days the super-sleuths of the UK could easily sort the malingers from the genuine moribund by talking to them on the phone.

Daily Telegraph: National Sickie Day: peak number of staff call in 'ill'

  • Today's challenge: what the worst excuse for absence you've heard (or given!)


  1. A bit cheeky of me to post the first comment on my own article, but I did once see a t-shirt (in Ottawa) sporting the wonderful slogan "I've used up all my sick leave, so this morning I phoned in dead!"

  2. Once came across a guy who had a significant of time off work because his girlfriend had died in tragic circumstances. I was, at the time, on my summer work experience as part of my IPM course (showing my age now) and was asked by my manager to draft a suitable letter to said individual because she had tried and failed. I spent several hours trying to pen a suitable letter only to discover several months later that his girlfriend had been fictitious. I have never forgiven him!!! Did work a treat though - no-one dared question such a tragic story.


  3. I had a student once state that she didn't make it to the exam because she dreamt that she had died in an air crash and that she was too traumatised to come to college the next day.

  4. EBTG/Anonymous

    Thanks for these comments. Only goes to show that truth is often stranger that fiction!

  5. Saw a story about a student failed out of a university course because missed class due to grandmother's death. The professor's reason? "You used the same excuse last month." Unfortunately, the student really did have both grandmothers die within a month of each other.