It’s Friday afternoon, it’s gorgeous outside, and you’re sitting at your desk staring out the window. It’s agonizing. To be perfectly honest, you’re probably not going to get anything done for the rest of the day anyway. So why fight it? Stop wasting your time stalking your friends on Facebook. Take off… that’s what summers are for.

Of course, pulling off this caper means coming up with a good excuse. It needs to be something out of your control and unavoidable, and it also needs to be important enough that it can’t be ignored.

Don’t take things too far and say something awful, like claiming a family member died or is in the hospital. That’s just wrong, and it has to be bad karma. Instead, try one of the 10 excuses listed below.

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Kids!

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If you have kids, your job couldn’t be easier — it’s impossible to say no when a parent is needed. Don’t go overboard, though… the basic “school called and my kid is sick” or “the babysitter called and my kid is sick” will do just fine.

Be sure to toss in the obligatory “…and my husband/wife/boyfriend/girlfriend is unreachable” for good measure.

Those darn pipes

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“My neighbor called and the pipes broke in my home/apartment!” This is a risky play since it’s been used a lot. You also only get to use this one once. The key here is to be in a panic when you tell your boss, to stick by the door, and to already be walking away as you give him or her your explanation.

Feel free to mix things up with an exploding water heater.

Food poisoning

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Sometimes the gas station sushi up the block is calling your name. Make sure you dab some water around your brow to really sell this one.

Relatives are so annoying

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Your aunt is in town from Idaho and your mom was supposed to give her a ride back to the airport, but her gout is acting up. Darn it!

This one only works if your boss is pretty nice… and has never heard of Uber.

Home improvements need improvement

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Don’t you hate it when you’re having work done on your home and the contractor calls to tell you he’s run into a serious problem?

Lemon aide

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Your husband’s car broke down yet again? Well maybe if your boss gave you a raise, you guys could afford a new one instead of that crummy old lemon.

Just saying…

Such a sweetheart

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It’s your anniversary and you want to beat your wife home so you can set up a nice surprise. What kind of heartless boss would say no to that?

Kids! part 2

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You don’t have to pretend your kid is sick to leave work early — what if he or she just missed the bus?

Your significant other is away on a business trip and the school will only release your child to a guardian. Sorry, boss.

Special delivery

Your neighbor promised she would be home between 1:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. to let the delivery men in with your new couch. But, wouldn’t you know it, his kid missed the bus and he has to go pick her up at school!

Fido has a fever

When your dog walker calls and says poor Fido has the flu or ate something he shouldn’t have, no one can stop you from getting him to the vet as soon as possible.

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