How to Desert at Work: The Sickie

Sick Leave is not just a right, it is a duty. Why face the daily plague of trains, meetings and deadlines when one simple phone call can leave you alone in bed with a Littlewoods catalogue until opening time?

Many don’t take full advantage of this windfall because they fear detection or harbour some kind of conscience. We’re here to help with road-tested tips that will allow you at least two weeks’ leave to do absolutely fuck all with.

The Details
One sure way to stop any further questioning of your condition is to give lurid details of symptoms, especially those involving bodily functions. No employer wants to hear about your stool, or lack of it. Offering to send a picture will end the conversation swiftly.

If you’re female and have a male boss, any menstrual minutiae will see him off. You can even make up body parts safe in the knowledge he will erase from his mind your “swollen phalaxia with abject pustules” before he’s hung up.

The Timing
Everybody knows that no one has been really sick on a Friday or Monday since 1963. It’s obvious you’re just trying to extend the weekend, so mix it up a bit. Call in on Thursday then take the Friday too. If you think you’ve been rumbled, take one extra day you don’t even want, let alone need. Attack is the best form of defence. And attack.

Forward Planning
Seed your sickie by reporting to anyone who’ll listen that your partner has come down with some life-sapping lurgy in the days leading up to your absence, while laughing distastefully at his or her symptoms. This will invite “serves him right” office gossip, thus cementing your poorliness.

Emergency
Some hospitals are licensed

Never mention your interest in horse racing prior to the Cheltenham Festival, just in case you feel ill enough to flop your wad on the nags in a four-day booze and gambling bender. On your return, tell everyone you’re fine, then run, actually run, out of an important meeting, to the bathroom, before returning, shirtless.

The Voice
Do you have a ‘poor you’ sick voice you put on when calling the boss? Well, drop it. You’re not calling your mother, so remember, it’s not sympathy you’re after, it’s agreement. Just talk slowly, a few inches from the phone until they tire of saying “Pardon?”

Thinking Outside The Pox
Nobody buys man-flu as an excuse any more, especially if you’re a woman. Not even if you call it, as I do, The Widow Maker. Gout, similarly, evokes little sympathy. So flus/colds have to be used sparingly and interspersed with explosive gastrointestinal incidents, car crashes, dead grannies and sick children (always invent one at the interview stage – it makes you seem grown up and delivers the mother lode of time off).

Collect medical equipment such as neck braces, eye patches and arm slings for later use. Keep it simple: “I’m sick – honestly, you don’t want to know the details”, will suffice, especially if those details involve dwarf porn.

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