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Sunday, June 30, 2013

Careful What You Ask for There

I’m planning my next sick day.

I mean, I don’t want to waste my time actually being sick.

I just want to claim that I am.

I’m not a willy-nilly kind of gal, despite what you may have heard; and there’s no reason to rush into things. After all, with a light at the end of the tunnel, one can endure much.

But what do I call in with? What kind of sick am I?

I had the real Swine Flu just a couple years ago, so that’s out. Faking that requires almost four full weeks of sallow-faced, furrow-browed commitment.

Who's got that kind of energy?

And I’m not interested in recreating the Great Chicken Pox Hysteria of the mid-80s, either – a condition wherein three out of four co-workers came in with real Chicken Pox, causing me to break-out in a rash resembling yet totally unrelated to a pox.

Turns out I'm suggestible.

No, I need something small yet urgent, something that wouldn’t require a doctor’s note – or even a doctor’s appointment – but that would keep me out of the office for a day or two.

If I lost a toe, would that sound suspicious? I broke one once. Of course, I was rather drunk at the time, apparently too drunk to be concerned about the excruciating pain inflicted by the chick on the dance floor with four-inch heels, an excruciating pain that magically disappeared with a couple shots of tequila. In the morning, however, the pain returned and that’s when I discovered the fat purple slug that had replaced my baby toe.

Hmm. OK. No toe abuse.

What about a collapsed lung? Too dramatic? You know, the more I think about it, the less excited I am about this one. While there may actually be a sudden and organic reason for a lung collapsing, I just don’t look like someone who’s lung might do that.

How about the vapors? Is that really a medical condition or is it turn-of-the-century code for passing gas? I hate to call in claiming flatulence. I called in "ugly" once and things were never quite the same in the ol' typing pool after that.  Do you think I dare call in with “the vapors”, or is that just a good way to get a drop-in from HR?

I think I'm going to sit on this one for a while.

There's no rush. Like I said, as long as there’s a light at the end of the tunnel, one can endure much.

37 comments:

Silliyak said...

I always wanted to call because I could't see... "I can't see coming in to work today...". But seriously, just an infectious potential sniffle should do, or a mention of lung butter is always good.

Sioux said...

I had a friend who used to call in and simply say, "I'm unable to make it in today." Would that be enough?

When I was a kid, my parents said I had diarrhea...of the mouth. Could you say diarrhea was the reason, and after you called in (or logged in) you could add "of the mouth."

Just a couple of suggestions...

Joanne Noragon said...

OMG, the vapors. I thought they were the stuff of fiction until I acquired a relative who actually gets the vapors. It is a condition in which a very current and critical obligation must be met, but the mind and body of the person charged with the duty simply float away and become preoccupied with extracting moats from the air. You might try it at work and be sent home sick. Vapors must be demonstrated, not called in. I'd get a better name for it too, like terminal ennui.

Simply Suthern said...

Call in Scared, I'm afraid I can't make it.

Dawn @Lighten Up! said...

do it! call in claiming 'flatulence!' Double-dawg dare ya, and I'll buy you 3 margaritas if you do!

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
(...you DO know I am a physician, right?)

Anyway, the vapours was what Mrs Bennett used to get when things didn't go her way (Pride and Prejudice) - it is a psychological disorder resulting in physical manifestations such as flutterings and stutterings, fainting and even vomiting. This condition can certainly be claimed if you are known for being 'highly strung'. Management is rest, soothing soups and the reassurance of friends. All this requires at least one if not two days of respite from duties.

Flatulence has a very real basis for loss of work time, for it can become trapped in the splenic flexure of the bowel causing cutting pains similar to that of appendicitis. These can be prolonged and are improved by exercise, warm baths and multiple peppermint teas. To manage such, a full day free of duties may be required.

There is a rarer condition which is becoming ever more prevalent and relates to whichever city you reside at the time of its emergence. In your case this would be Minneapolisosis. It manifests as a severe allergic reaction to be out and about in the city upon which the inflammation is centred. Headache, sniffles, itchy eyes, nausea and dizziness are the key symptoms. Management involves avoidance of public transport, seeing anyone other than the occupants of your home and dosing up on favourite foods (aka comfort eating). Stabilisation of the condition may take as much as 24 hours, therefore release from duties is imperative.

I hope this is of assistance. My hours are as advertised and recompense is by donation. Yours Truly, ...... &*>

Robbie Grey said...

I did call in dead once. My overseer was too gobsmacked that I had the gall actually do that for there to be any repercussions. There was also the time I called with malaria and when I said I had leprosy and needed a few days to pull myself together, but that's another story.

fishducky said...

I don't believe anything could top what Robbbie Grey said!!

Jennifer Hoppins said...

I called in independent once, and then became independent!

Geo. said...

One could try "metaphysical distress" but they'd want a note from your theologian.

Marion Bulmer said...

Really, really bad cystitis or a short-term urinary tract infection, which requires you to be near a fridge full of chilled cranberry juice (with or without vodka) for a day, and also near a bathroom to deal with the frequent but unproductive and painful urges to pee. Works particularly well if you have a female boss...

joeh said...

Yamini,
What?

jenny_o said...

A stomach bug is a good excuse. People don't WANT you there! And they don't want you there the NEXT day, either! You become a social outcast. Which is probably not what you were aiming for ...

How about laryngitis? You can email your absence, because obviously you can't talk. And when you go back, be sure to use a croaky voice for at least a day or two.

My goodness, it sounds like I'm good at this excuse stuff. So help me, I have never used it.

Judy said...

Well, don't have a car accident - my Mom just did that and she is in hospital with a cracked rib and several cracks in her pelvis. I think losing a toe would be better than that!!!

Stef said...

Pink eye. Everyone hates pink eye and will beg you to stay away. PLus no lasting scars.

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM Joeh (via Pearl).... I am known for my thoroughness!! @~}

Linda O'Connell said...

Just say you have come down with a bad case of T.O.W. tired of work.

Eva Gallant said...

Between Yamini and Robbie...you should be all set!

sage said...

West Nile, if the mosquitoes are as bad in MN as in MI, it sounds possible, heck maybe even Yellow Fever or Malaria.

Gigi said...

I'm writing all this down....what?! I need a day or two off here and there too, doncha know?

Indigo Roth said...

Hey Pearl! Hell, I'd stock up on batteries and call in with an outbreak of "hysterical paroxysms". I have some experience in this field if you're unsure how to proceed. Roth x

vanilla said...

If a day off requires that much thought and preparation, you might as well go to work.

tiffany rose said...

I am learning so much from all the comments.

How 'bout ... ugh, must be something I ate is not agreeing with me and I was up all night ... umm, I'll spare you the gory details.

Food poisoning is usually fast and furious and nobody wants the evidence.

HermanTurnip said...

That's what's awesome about my job. I just have to write a quite one line e-mail stating "I'll be out of the office ill today". No need to make up an excuse. Nobody questioning me. Day off! Next stop, a quick run around the lake then jump on the long board skateboard to see what's going on in Balboa Park...

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

You twisted your ankle and need to ice it for 24 hours, you had an unexpected attack of vertigo, you have a rash in a most discreet area of the body and you think you may have shingles (you can be relieved the next day that you didn't have shingles after all..just a really bad heat rash), 24 hour flu, heat stroke, allergic reaction to a food, ....shall I go on? The possibilities are endless.

Jo-Anne Meadows said...

Ok if you were to call in with the "vapors" they may think you where going to a concern.........yes there was a band called the Vapors remember them they sang "Turning Japanese" yeah I remember that song. Of course you can go with the one thing hard to prove you don't have...."the runs"...........lol or a migraine how does one prove someone doesn't have a migraine.

Elephant's Child said...

With the wonderful reasons for non attendance being offered you may never have to go back. My mother, whose spelling was suspect, used to say that I had had the 'urgencies'. No questions were ever asked.

Tez said...

You can have this migraine that is laying me low today - it's all yours for free, gratis, complimentary, just like your day off. I think every company should allow so many 'pretend sick days' every year. They would be called Burnout Days, that way you can recoup without the guilt. Ah, if only they would let me be in charge!

River said...

The Vapors was turn-of-the-century code for feeling faint or actually fainting. Women back then had the vapors often because they fainted a lot when they couldn't breathe properly because they were laced into too tight corsets. I imagine all that fainting is what gave rise to the notion that women were the weaker sex.
Just call in one morning and tell them you've been up all night with diarrhea. They won't want to see you for a day or so.

Just Be Real said...

I love this post. You think like I would.....blessings Pearl.

the walking man said...

Before you call in sick go into work with a few Skittles glued on your face and make them think you're coming down with Skittlepox.

goatman said...

A sucking chest wound would maybe work; although the cause may be problematic and involve the authorities.

Pat Tillett said...

For one day, just tell them you have a stomach bug. If you need a week or more, how about the plague?
Where you work, is there really such a thing as an "HR drop-in?"

Elizabeth Rose Stanton said...

You could always feign a migraine--the kind where you go temporarily blind (or at least get those sparkly vision disturbances). No one would ever know, since it's all in your head ;)

Daisy said...

How about coming down with that stomach bug--you know, that one that's going around? That ought to work for you. :-D

Diane Tolley said...

Explosive diarrhea. No one wants the details of that! They just say a polite thank you, hope you're feeling better and hang up the phone. Done.

storystorm.me said...

Congratulations to Pearl Vork Zambory whose story "Blowing Smoke" has been selected for publication in the anthology "Not your Mother's Book . . . On Being a Parent," scheduled for a September 10, 2013 release.
Pat Nelson
Co-creator, NYMB . . . On Being a Parent