I really hope that educators keep journals. The stories that are woven for them on the daily about why students are tardy or why assignments are late have got to be epic. The mind is a terrible thing to waste, and what a mind some of us have when trying to cover our tracks. If only we could apply our creative know how to completing work and not avoiding it.... especially when we're younger. Teachers have got to have a "best of" compilation for student excuses.
Redditor u/imtroppocool wanted teachers to share with us some tales about when they believed students were trying to bamboozle them, when in fact bamboozling may not have been occurring, by asking.... Teachers of reddit, what was the best excuse for being late that turned out to be true?
Had a student ask to leave class once the test was finished because his lung had collapsed a couple days earlier and he was still recovering. He then pulled up his shirt to show me the valve they had inserted.
I told him he didn't have to take the test, but he had already studied for it and wanted to get it over with.
I also had a student ask to leave after the test because her husband had died the previous day and she had to make arrangements. Insisted on taking the test.
My students are hard-core.
Just This Time.
Student at Uni. Was late for an 8am because the night before I slept in the hallway of one of our class buildings doing homework... (we had sofas and desks around there so it was a nice and quiet place to study, also open 24/7).
Woke up around 8:30 and ran to my class which was one floor above the one I was.
The professor excused me and told me I could skip his class because they saw me sleeping there and said something on the lines of "at least you were doing your assignments so I'll let you go this time."
I was a teacher (college) but my students were mostly good. Oddest excuse was someone was late to lab and normally if you missed the opening slides/presentation detailing today's experiment you could not take the class that day. This was as much a safety concern as anything else. Once a student burst into the room just as I was finishing the slides so they were technically okay.
When prompted for a reason they said they had lost track of time squirrel fishing. Considering they still had the stick, string, and nuts in hand I let them go.
Squirrel fishing is common on our campus as a form of stress relief; I have done it a few times as well. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Squirrel_fishing
IKEA All the Way....
Not me but my program coordinator told the story at orientation. Girl was a really good student. Always on time, studies like crazy, good grades. Overall close to perfect student. Pass or fail exam comes and she's a no show. They call her, text her, email her.
3 hours after the exam starts she walks in with an IKEA catalogue and the name and phone number of the manager written on it. She had been stuck inside of a broken down elevator at IKEA. She had no cell service in the elevator, so she couldn't call and explain. They let her start the exam in a separate room.
I have two.
- A soldier in an online class, he apologized for being late for turning in a paper. His reason, he was in a firefight the previous night. That was excused promptly.
- A student turned in a paper that was singed around the edges. His claim was he and his girl were getting romantic, and a candle lit his drapes on fire and I guess he pretty much burned his whole side of the house down. Verified the story with news that night. SquareDetective
A Few Tales....
Two different students in the same class.
A girl who came to school at lunchtime told me that she had spent the night at her grandparents in another city, and they woke up early in the morning as the house was ablaze.
Yup, could confirm her story online.
The house wasn't too badly damaged and everyone was OK, thankfully.
A guy who the week prior blamed a dryer for his tardiness, claimed that he only had one pair of pants. When he woke up in the morning his pants was wet, and he couldn't walk around with a soggy bottom, so he threw the pants in the dryer and waltzed off to do other stuff.
An hour later he took the pants out of the dryer, only to discover that he had forgotten to turn it on, and, well, he had to spend another hour to dry the pants.
His mom told me that as he had decided to switch to a specific style he had donated almost all his clothes. He actually only had one pair of pants.
Coronation Street Delay
My dad was a teacher in a school that is also used for filming a British TV soap opera. He would regularly be told that students were late due to having to do several takes (they would just walk around in the background of scenes). A few weeks later you'd see them on the TV. Coronation Street - the School is called Weatherfield High in the show, but when dad was there it was called Hope High School in reality.
Tiniest, quietest girl in the whole school walks in late, gets harshly questioned by the teacher on what her excuse was.
"I'm sorry, I got hit by a car."
She was 5 minutes late. She then proceeded to ask for permission to go to the infirmary. Her whole left side was covered in scratches and scrapes, but the door was on the right of the teacher's desk, so it wasn't immediately apparent.
"you poor girl"
I had a teacher who made us just write in a book why we were late, so we could quietly slip in and sit down without disturbing others. I simply wrote "work". She basically cornered me after, and half jokingly half serious starting drilling asking why I was so special my bosses needed me and she needs more info and omg don't they realize education was important?
So, with my head down unable to meet her gaze, I start to explain in horse breeding when you have high end horses you can collect their semen and just ship it all over. At the time they needed an extra hand and I was the only other employee comfortable working with their stallion. I went into great detail in all that is involved in the process.
She gave me a hug, said "you poor girl" and said I'm allowed to simply write "work" from now on if it happens again. (for the record, at that time I was simply the person holding the stallions lead rope and keeping him in control, not the one doing the nitty gritty stuff.)
Through the Window....Giphy
I was already running late and was hit by a car outside my class. The professor saw it through the window. I still went to class and she was cool about it, since I was hit by a car.
I Gored Myself
This might be the opposite of the prompt but once a professor canceled class 5 minutes before it started because she "found a chicken in her yard" ...? I gave her a real rough review when the time came.
Also i once had to turn in a graphic design final project a day late because I cut off my thumb with an x-acto blade. The professor was cool with it... I sent him photo evidence. 😂
An awesome teacher of mine let me into an SAT prep class late. When I told her that my apartment was robbed she was in awe. We were new immigrants and didn't have much, no Tv, no computers, just beds and some clothing, but my alarm clock was stolen (silly really!). She brought me an alarm on Monday with some clothes too.
Just Followin' Traffic Laws
Once my friend and I were late to a 7:45 am class, so we decided to stop at the stop sign (we were walking). When we got to class and the teacher asked why we were late, we told her we had to stop at the stop sign while walking. She let it slide for comedy's sake.
Humanity Made Me Late
In high school my chemistry teacher was 20 minutes late to first period. Another science teacher was getting class started when my teacher burst through the door holding a little gift bag. He had found a baby bird on his way to the school and took the time to make it a little nest in the bag and go buy food. The rest of class was spent caring for the little guy. He was one of my favorite teachers ever.
(Once he pulled the safety shower thing to show how it works and it wouldn't turn off. He flooded the classroom below us)
During my junior year of high school I was late to my first hour because my mom, who drove me to school every morning, had to stop the car on the side of the road to watch a family of wild turkeys for over 10 minutes.
Not The Most Efficient Use Of A Helicopter
In the 90's some dude thought to pick up his buddy from the train station on his helicopter, in Braga Portugal. While lifting off he hit the power lines and the helicopter fell on the motorcycle park near the station. No one got seriously hurt except the helicopter and a few bikes. Student of mine arrived late and his excuse was that an helicopter had crashed on his motorcycle so he had to walk. Did not believe him until I saw the news that night.
A Good, Long Nap
I'm a teacher now so this kinda counts, in high school once I went in like 2 hours before school started to finish up a presentation in the library, it only took me like an hour so I decided to go rest in my car till school started, woke up halfway through third period in my car and didn't turn my work in till the next day cause I slept through class.
I'm a student, and this incident happened... I think either first or second grade, either way I was probably right.
So, every morning my dad or mom would drop me off at the bus stop, and go do their own stuff, because, y'know, the bus always came. On this particular day, me and all the other kids in our neighborhood just sorta... Stood there for a while. It's getting late, and finally the bus arrives.
We're all freaked out that the bus was late, but hey, we can still make it to school on time, right? Wrong! The bus driver had a sub that day, one who had just moved to our city, and we were like the fifth stop.
Cue a bus full of elementary school kids who have never paid attention to a stop light trying their god damn best to guide a bus driver to the other stops, all while the clock keeps ticking on.
Eventually, the sub had to call our principal or something, in order to explain how the actual f*ck this happened, and another driver picked up the rest of kids while we finally got to school.
I really should've paid more attention to street signs, clearly.
Eyerolls Ain't The Way
I once showed up 30 minutes late to a college class and the teacher just rolled her eyes at me. I looked her in the eye and said "sorry I'm late. somebody died on my train." To be clear, I said this due to the New York MTA's use of the term 'sick passenger', which generally means someone who is unresponsive or possibly dead. In hindsight, the person might not have died, but it was still something that was entirely out of my control that prevented me from being on time to class.
A Classic Excuse With A Twist
Not a teacher but i walked in with a baggy of my homework that my puppy chewed up, teacher thought i was joking when i said my dog ate my homework, jokes on her i fed it to my dog so i wouldn't have to do it.
Caffeine And We'll Call It Even
I taught a grade 12 health class. The kids were 18 and I was 23. Two students were constantly coming in late first thing in the morning. Finally one day I asked them to come to my desk for a chat. I said to the two boys you are always late for class can you please explain why. They said we get breakfast in the McDonalds drive thru. I was like how about you guys get me a coffee the odd time and I won't mark you late..🤷🏼♀️🙃
I Guess I'm Three Dogs Now?
My 3 dogs ate the book I needed for about 20 different assignments. I had to put the chewed-up remains in a bag and take it to my teacher, and they gave me an F for all the assignments because they thought I had done it myself to get out of schoolwork. Yep, this dum@ss thought I chewed up a whole 300 or 400 page book all by myself. That book was bigger than my head and it was a hardcover book, explain to me how this idiot thought I thoroughly chewed an entire book by myself in less than 12 hours (I had used the book in their class for tutoring the night before and they were my 1st class in the morning).
Slip N Slide
Not a teacher, but the student. My Spanish teacher in high school asked me why I was late. I said my bus hit my science teacher's garage. The whole class started laughing their a**es off. My teacher had to explain I was telling the truth. They were friends and he already knew. The house was at the bottom of a hill on a gravel road. The road was pure ice and the bus couldn't stop
Adding Insult To Injury
I had to tell my math teacher I was late because the history teacher from the previous class wanted to lecture me after a student kicked me in the stomach.
The Math teacher had this look on her face that clearly showed she was having a hard time making sense of what I just said. She asked me what I did.
I told her that I have up to three Elizabeth's in each of my classes (Math had two). Almost every single one wanted to be called Lizze, Or Liz, or Beth. except one, and she was in my history class. I kept calling her by one of the other nicknames by accident, when she just wanted to be called Elizabeth. Except, this was the second to last class, and I was used to using one of the other variations. I kept slipping and called her by one of the nicknames, apologizing each time, and fixing my mistake.
Apparently, she got tired of it, and kicked me.
I got a 10 minute lecture about name calling. Elizabeth was just told "you know better than to kick someone." And we were let go. And yes, the Math teacher had to check this out to make sure it was true. And yes, I had a bruise on my stomach.
When The Pickings Are Slim
I went to high school in a small rural town. The main road leading to this town is a 2 lane highway with steep hills/curves. One morning there was some construction/accident causing major traffic and a detour. When we/parents called the school to inform them they already knew. A large group of students were all late by various times and didn't need proof.
The One Thing We Hope Never To Hear
Unbelievably sad, but "my mum died last night".
All the rest of the family lived far away, so dad brought the kids to school so someone could take care of them while he was making arrangements and until the grandparents could get a flight that afternoon. Asked the boy if he wanted to go to the counsellor, but he said he'd rather be with his friends.
He (and his siblings) were understandably absent the remaining two weeks of term.
I've actually had this excuse a second time (and it was true then also), but it was from a boy who was raised by foster parents from birth.
His birth mum had overdosed the day before and they kept him home to talk about it. He didn't care (he'd seen her maybe 5 times in 12 years) and was indeed happy because it meant that his foster parents could legally adopt him as his birth mum wouldn't sign the paperwork (she didn't know/wouldn't say who his biological father was).
This Is A Mood
Not my story, but a friend's. She said she was walking to school when she was in 1st grade and stopped to pet a cat. Well, she lost track of time and ended up getting counted absent. The office called her mother to ask why she wasn't at school, and of course everyone freaked out. They found her still sitting there with the cat.
Another Reason To Stop Eating Chik-Fil-A
This was me as a student, and resulted in both being late and leaving early. I have been using Invisalign, clear plastic retainers for those who don't know. The left side of my bottom teeth weren't moving the way the Orthodontist wanted them too, so they had to schedule an appointment to add three metal brackets and a short wire on my teeth to get that part of my mouth to move. My mother then took me to get Chik-fil-A after my appointment before heading to my school. While eating nuggets, the middle bracket came loose and began spinning around on the wire and between the other two remaining brackets. I tell my mother this, and she says we'll go back after school to replace it.
Around half an hour, I am in my Spanish class when another bracket comes out. I leave to tell my mother (she worked at the school), and she decided it might be more ideal to leave after Spanish, as the wire could begin poking at my gums and that wouldn't be good.
The Whole School Was Late
A couple years back there were roadworks all along the main road of our town, because of the extreme amount of traffic at 7:00/8:00 in the morning it all went very slowly.
But because everyone was stuck in the same traffic our whole school (teachers included) would all arrive an hour late to start the day because of the holdup.
One Way To Feel Like The New Kid
My car died in the middle of the packed college parking lot on the very first morning of classes, on my very first day of college. It died right in the middle of the lane so no cars could get around me. People were honking. Cars were having to back up one at a time to get out of the lane. I was extremely shy and pretty much begged for death at that point. I had to call my dad to come help me. Despite being able to SEE my class from my stranded car, I ended up being 30 mins late because I couldn't abandon it in the middle of the road.
Lack Of Money And Convenience
Idk if this counts, but one time, in the first week of the semester, I was over thirty minutes late to a 2 hour class because I legitimately couldn't find a parking spot! Very frustrating! Finally found one all the way across campus (had to spot someone walking to their car and ask if I could follow them and take their spot). The parking cost for the semester wasn't cheap either! Ugh
Sitcom Style Physical Comedy
Not a teacher but a student in hs. I was running late for school and was wearing heels and a dress for an academic challenge meet after school. I ran outside into the wet grass and then realized I forgot something inside. After grabbing whatever I left inside I ran back down the stairs and my wet heels slipped on the stairs. I managed to fall (literally) head over heels and my heel landed in the dry wall. At the time I did the announcements at school and had a student internship first block. I messaged my teacher with a picture of my bruised eye. The excuse seemed to work pretty well.
Vista Was A Nightmare
As a teaching assistant: 1) Student was late getting their assignments in, told us they had Lupus and had been in the hospital. Story checked out. 2) Football player repeating the class came in, looked like he expected to get chewed out and did by the head teacher. His excuse? His parents had thrown it out. He brought it in a couple days later, stained by food and liquids. They apparently told him it was worthless to try since he's never amount to anything and threw out all his school papers. He was accepted to college with our lunch timing tutoring.
Personally: my midterm college paper was due that morning and, within an hour of class, discovered I could no longer log in to my laptop to print it. Turned out my Windows Vista updated the night before and locked me out. Refused to accept my password. My teacher took one look at my laptop, patted my shoulder, and told me he'd give me an extra week because he also hated Vista with a heated passion. Took my sister and I a couple days but we managed to retrieve my paper from a backup, then upgraded my laptop to Win7.
When You Have Less Faith In Colleagues Than In Students
Fixing another teacher's car. I thought he was trying to pull a fast one but he was all smeared with brake dust/grease, and once I met the teacher he helped, I realized she would be stupid enough to drive 10 minutes with the kind of car problem he said she had.
The Professors Sympathize
I was a student at the time.
At my attending school, we had "Duke Exams". This was the title for an exam from Dr. Duke, a history teacher. She gave 15 "3 words prompts" and 5 questions for every exam.
The parameters for both of these? Write everything you know/remember from class.
I stayed in a Duke Exam for five hours, once. I was excused from all of my classes for that day because I told each professor that morning I had a Duke Exam.
The Teacher Probably Knew
I was smoking in my friends car before school. I left my stuff including my weed and my school books in my car. When it was time to go to school, I went to my car and realized I locked my keys in with everything else so simply calling my parents or AAA was not an option. I go to first period high af and my teacher asks why I'm late and why I have nothing with me so I tell her I locked my keys in my car. Fast forward to lunch period and I return to the car with some of my friends to somehow get myself back... a friend ended up smashing my entire back window. I was of course late to my next class and I had to explain the whole story (minus the weed) Teacher called me a dumb@$$.
What To Do When You Simply See "Explosive Diarrhea"
I have a Tardy Documentation Ledger which students are compelled to sign in when they are late. They can write a reason if they want (they are almost always tardy unless they have a pass). Most of the excuses are simply confessions, like "Walking slowly," or "talking to friends in the hallway." Occasionally I get an excuse that is more detailed, like "Explosive diarrhea," or "I got into a car accident today and the guy was a real jerk and he called the cops and I got mad and smashed my windshield and my sister almost got into a fight with the guy and the cop wrote me the ticked and my dad was so pissed and he said it will lose my car and my phone."
They're Gonna Win!
"We had a brainwave on how to build a killer robot, and lost track of time."
I checked. Daaaang, my students have some cool hobbies!
Amateur Robot Wars
I'm not a teacher, but when I was 14 I helped my mom teach summer school for 2nd graders the whole summer. This one kid didn't come to school one day, and when they came back the next day they said "oh, I needed to take my raccoon to the vet so I could get it neutered." I thought the kid was just lying and they didn't feel like coming. The next day this kid brings in a picture of them, gleefully holding a little raccoon. I still didn't believe it until their dad came to pick them up a few days later and guess what's poking it's head out the car window? A raccoon.
We Love Random Acts Of Imperialism
I went to a public high school on the Air Force Academy base, so if you lived off base, you had to stop and show your ID at the gate. One morning my senior year, I happened to get selected for a random car search - they had me pull off to the side of the gate and stand there for about half an hour as they looked under my hood and in my trunk and everything. So when I finally get to English class, I explain to my teacher what happened.... luckily my classmates could vouch for seeing me as they drove by
Misogyny At Its Finest
Not a teacher nor the student, but my great grandmother had a good one. Her car broke down and she had to fix it. Not so strange now, but the teacher had a hard time believing a woman could fix a car! It was the 30s after all. Well she lived on a farm and they only had girls so they all had to learn to fix things, great great grandpa confirmed. (Or so I was told)
It's Gettin' Hot In Herrre
Not a teacher, but my classmate was 30 minutes late for our Croatian language class this year. When our Headroom teacher asked him why he was late he told him that his house was on fire. He started laughing. It turned out to be true. His chimney and a part of his roof indeed was on fire.
Injuries Get You Every Time
In kindergarten, I tumbled down one of those twirly slides and bruised my nose, sprained my ankle, cut my lip open, and cut open the inside of my ear. Thinking back, I must have looked so bad@ss with blood pouring out of one ear and dripping from my mouth, a bruise on my nose which was also bleeding, and with a black eye from hitting it on the slide. My friend just walked me to the bathroom where I cleaned myself up (that's what I get for having a family full of nurses) and then walked me to get an ice pack for my ankle. I just set my foot up on the table and took my quiz.
There was also a time just before quarantine when I slipped off my skateboard (I don't always get a ride to school and it's only a twenty minute walk) and a whole chunk of the skin on my knee came off as i slid across the sidewalk. I always carry a first aid kit (again-family of nurses) and just straight up used a water fountain to rinse it off and then wrapped it and carried my board the rest of the way.
No Tone For The Stone
When I was in highschool I once had a small kidney stone which caused me to miss about a week of school. On my first day back, one of my teachers asked me in a condescending tone in the middle of the class where I was that whole week, as if I had skipped school to go on a tropical vacation. I answered that I had a kidney stone and her tone instantly disappeared.
The Most Stressful Time Of Your Life
I was absolutely stressing out my senior year of college, so much so that I went to counseling at the local mental health clinic. I lived at home during college, but I was trying to conceal the fact that I was going to a mental health clinic from my parents. This was the '80's and the stigma associated with mental health issues was way worse than it is now. So one day, I was allegedly leaving home early to study before class when I was really going to counseling about a mile or two in the wrong direction. After my counseling session, I had to move pretty damn fast to get to my college campus. I got to the classroom just as the teacher was pulling the door shut, but she saw that I was running to make it, so she just smiled at me and let me in.
Am a student. Was put in ESE in 4th grade because Florida schools are terrible at handling children when their parents refuse to drug them out of their minds. Got partially out of it in middle school, but wasn't fully mainstreamed until 8th grade because the school didn't want to give up their big fat paycheck from having one more ESE kid.
There was one class in 7th grade I showed up to an hour late every day. Turns out ESE classes follow a different schedule than normal classes, so my ESE English overlapped my Mainstream Social Studies by an entire hour. It got to the point where my SS teacher would send me to the office the moment I walked into her class. I think that was what finally got me out.
(The specific brand of ESE was called "Emotionally Handicapped." Feel free to look up how horrific it is.)
The funniest - "The bathroom sink exploded on me." Found out later that day that the pipe in the student bathroom actually did burst as my student was washing his hands.
The grossest - "The Police Horse diarrhead on me" They police officer brought the horse by the high school for part of some assembly. The students had like 20 minutes to see the horse afterwards if they wanted to. The horse apparently was having a bad stomach day...
The Most Unforgettable - "I was waiting for the pregnancy test to confirm I'm pregnant" I literally stared at her open mouthed for like 10 seconds before I thought of anything to say. She was so upbeat about it as well. (This was like a few days before her graduation so I'm not actually sure what happened with it all)
A Kebabster's Note
A kid said he was eating a kebab at a store, teacher didn't believed him and he showed him a paper from the kebab man confirming what he was saying.
Lines Don't Work When It's True
Not a teacher, but a classmate with limited english was once made to write lines to the effect of "I will not lie about crosses falling from the sky to excuse my tardiness." The teacher later had to apologise to the boy when the newspapers reported that the giant cross on the town clock tower had come off due to rust the morning before.
Always remember that one.
I Forgot My Clothes
I worked in the main office at a school and had TEACHERS come in late. The usual excuses: couldn't find my keys, traffic jam, kids sick and needed to get a sitter. One teacher came in just as the bell rang but immediately got sent home. She took off her coat and only had her slip on. She apparently forgot to put on her skirt because she was rushing around so much!!! She never lived that one down.
Sounds 90s But Ok
Although I am a teacher, my favorite excuse was one I helped provide.
I went to college in the dark ages, before anyone had their own computers. My university was small & lacking in technology, but they had one computer lab where students could type & print their papers. My friend A. had just finished printing out his term paper for one of his important classes (a lot was riding on this paper), & he started walking to my apartment because he was dating my roommate.
Halfway to the apartment, where there was no shelter at all, the skies opened up in a torrential downpour. When A knocked at the apartment door, he looked like he'd jumped in a swimming pool. He'd tried shoving his freshly printed paper under his jacket, but it still got soaked. He couldn't go back to the lab because it closed minutes after he had left it.
I had heard that you could dry paper in the microwave oven, so I convinced A to let me microwave the pages, one at a time. The results were ok-ish. The sheets were warped, some had very badly smudged ink, and most of them had scorch marks—but we figured his prof would accept it (with the story), and then A could print a better copy when the computer lab reopened. (It was only open about 5 hours a night.)
His professor laughed when A turned in his scorched, smudged, and slightly rumpled paper with his explanation and his fervent promise to get a better copy to her later, but she didn't have a problem with him reprinting it & handing her a more readable copy the next day. He still got a 95% or something on it.
Not Safe To Be Alone At Night
I'm not a teacher and I wasn't late to class but I was unable to finish my assignment one night in like 7th grade because I got jumped by three random people at my local park that didn't even know me and didn't get out of the police station until late at night. The teacher believed me because it was pretty obvious I got beat up. Also all three of them were at least like 2-3 years older than me and I was alone so I didn't stand much of a chance.
Big Cats Roam
Obligatory not-a-teacher, but as a sophomore in high school I went home for lunch. Turned in the news and there was legit a bengal tiger on the loose in my neighborhood (apparently there was a wild animal sanctuary across the way and he escaped). I loved calling my physics teacher to tell him why I was going to be late to my first class after lunch!!
A Block Of Swans
I was once part of an entire university accommodation block (60 students approx ) who were late for the first lecture of the day. This was due to a pair of the university's nesting swans (there was a lake on campus) deciding to shelter from the miserable weather in the entrance doorway. As these evil tempered murder birds were notorious for taking offence at the mere existence of other forms of life, especially bipedal lifeforms, nobody was too keen in attempting to dislodge them.
One of the more foolhardy guys did try poking one of the with a broom handle but its counterattack was so intimidating we decided that discretion was the better part of valour.
The Thing To Come Back With
I was late to a class in TAFE and usually they don't let you in if you're more than 15 minutes. I had a drs note so I thought I'd try anyway coz more than one missed class and you fail.
Anyway the teacher asks why I'm so special to be allowed in when I was late, giving me real attitude, that she's not going to pander to my irresponsibility and detract from those who could be bothered to attend on time.
I was feeling kinda embarrassed and kind annoyed so I replied " sorry my daughters oncology appointment ran late but her specialist wrote me a note "
She just kinda stared at me and told me to sit down.
The Best Note Ever
I taught in a rural school with a very good shop class. I had a kid (super nice, talented kid I liked a lot) run late into choir covered head to toe with grease with a completely frantic expression on his face. He handed me an equally greasy note that said:
Please excuse _____ from class. He's helping me put together a bus we need to run in 45 minutes.
I think I kept the note but I haven't seen it in a long time.
I'm not a teacher but when I was in high school a kid in my class got bit by a rabid beaver and he missed volleyball tryouts. We had class together and the teacher was the coach. Obviously the coach didn't believe him at first but saw the massive bruise from the bite/treatment. To be fair I wouldn't have believed that excuse either had I not seen the mark.
How To Save A Life
I was the student in question. I was once late by about 20 minutes to class. My teacher thought it odd as I am never late. I said "sorry, my friend had a seizure" that friends teacher even gave me a pass. They checked with that teacher. 100% true. I helped my friend who had a seizure in class. She didn't want to go to home and I thought she knew better as it was her body and her condition. She was fine through out the day. I would later marry her friend who also has epilepsy. I am also trained to assist with 5 different types of seizures.
Ouchy Ouchy Ouchy
Student not teacher, college math class. I'd burned the heck out of my hand and was taking hydrocodone for the pain. I could take 3 and still function, but that morning in my sleep addled state I'd taken 3 as I was getting ready, forgot, and took 3 more as I was running out the door. Realized what I'd done about 10 seconds later, thought "oh no," and went to class.
I had a good relationship with the teacher and she knew about the hand already, so when I got to class I just told her what happened, and that I felt fine now, but that I didn't know what was gonna happen. She just told me "sit in the back, if the formulas I'm writing start melting off the board, just get up and go home."
I left 15 minutes later.
Forgot new school started at 7 am and showed up for an 8 am start time instead. It was November. Also it was me. The teacher. I showed up an hour late to a class of seventh graders because of a brain fart.
Oh Just A Normal Toe-Breaking
"Hey, sorry I'm late, I broke my toe on the way here! I set it, I'm good."
It happened. She set it, went through class, and went home.
Turned out she broke bones every week or so due to genetics, but boy did it scare me the first two times!
Just Can't Moooooooove
My math teacher said the best excuse he ever got for a student not getting homework finished was that there was a cow in her pool.
My understanding was that it was a family effort to get the cow out, and that the cow was in danger, and it was a lengthy process. I'm not entirely sure what went down, and I am still wondering if there was a fence around the pool...and if so what kind of Houdini bovine stuff went down.
Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
We often find ourselves having to guess how to make things work and make things fit--in our lives, but also just in our possessions. Will these pants fit me? These shoes?
Will this screw fit my table? Will this charger fit my phone?
If everything was somehow standard, wouldn't it all be so much easier?
Here were some of those answers.
No More Vanity Sizes
Sizes for clothing.
Especially for shoes. How hard would it be to just list the sizes in centimeters (or inches if you're American)?
WHY DO WE USE STANDARD MEASUREMENTS FOR OUR CLOTHES, BUT THEY ARE DIFFERENT SIZES IN DIFFERENT BRANDS???
Calvin Klein's men's slacks: 32'' waist
Bar III men's slacks: 32'' waist
Perry Ellis slacks: 32'' waist
THEY ARE ALL DIFFERENT WAIST SIZES. WHYY?!?!?!?!
Ah Yes, Three Chilis
There's a standard for chili heat levels (the Scoville scale), but food manufacturers never use it. Instead, they use a varying number of chili icons which mean nothing at all.
It's always fun going to like a Thai restaurant in Canada and trying to figure out whether the chili icon means Thai spicy or Canadian spicy.
Ah Yes, This Could Kill Me
Household electrical voltages and sockets.
Interestingly enough, there was an attempt: since 1986, there is an international standard socket, IEC 60906-1. However, only South Africa has implemented it so far.
And it is unlikely it will ever be implemented in other countries, as the EU is even advising against it since 2017:
REFIT found that "the harmonisation of plug and socket outlet systems in Europe, by introducing changes in national wiring legislations (would have) important transitional periods (above 75 years)", and that the cost to "replace the old socket-outlets (and the corresponding plugs of the appliances being used)" was estimated at 100 billion Euro, "generating a huge environmental impact, producing some 700 000 tons of electrical waste". REFIT does not recommend harmonising the plugs and socket-outlet systems in Europe.
Can we just get a little consistency here? Please?!
After working in a grocery store, can diameters should only come in a maybe 4 sizes. And they should all stack.
But they don't. They never do.
I feel your pain. I hate those narrow jars and cans that are slightly narrower than 3 wires of the shelf so they tip over if you don't place them perfectly.
A Computer Mouse, Not A Little Baby Mouse
Modern rechargable batteries.
We spent years with standard size batteries. We are now stuck with proprietary batteries which aren't designed to be user replaceable and often dictate the life of the device.
Yes absolutely. I found this fact especially annoying when looking for a mouse. Most of the more expensive mice come with rechargeable batteries, and it seems that modern tech reviewers are claiming this is better than some standard double A.
All Standard, Yet None Standard
I worked in a hardware store long enough to learn that apparently everything is standardized.
"I need window screens."
Okay, what are your dimensions?
"It's a standard size window."
"I'm looking for a replacement ceiling fan."
Okay, do you want small blades, large blades? A modest 30" span or a robust 56"?
"Just standard size."
"Do you think this large, bulky, cumbersome commodity will fit in my vehicle?"
I don't know. How big your truck?
"It's a standard one."
protip: it's a sedan. it's always a sedan.
Welp, Here's Your Problem
Based on years of helping my Dad in his shop, doing bodywork on vehicles - fastenings. Bolts, screws. rivets, clips... the sheer amount of specialized fastenings and required tools is insane. Even the variety of types in single vehicles is excessive.
Not to mention many of them are so cheaply made that there is no reusing them.
So Many Sign Languages
Not necessarily something that should be standardised because it would affect many cultures negatively, but I've always wondered what it would be like if every country just spoke one language. Sign language should probably be standardised, but re-learning sign language for people who use it may be difficult and time-consuming
Perhaps We Need To Rethink Policing
Police responses to missing persons across the nation, and the information requirements for police reports to be filled out with specific and complete information at the first point of contact by the person reporting the missing person, regardless of the age, status, or suspected reason for disappearing.
Police should NEVER be allowed to decide a case isn't valid at the first point of contact.
A Recipe For A Lint Fire
The laundry exhaust receptacle in homes should be centered exactly eighteen inches (45.7cm) from the floor with eighteen inches (or 45.7 cm) of clearance on both sides.
The exhaust duct of a clothes dryer should be in the middle of the back of the machine, and centered eighteen inches/45.7 cm from the floor. The dryer should have adjustable feet to allow for slight errors in measurement.
Once this is done, a laundry dryer can be pushed into the wall and we won't need to craft a length of ducting to connect the two.
Just a little bit of sameness and consistency could really go a long way here.
Some things ought not be tried again.
Sure, they made sense the first time. It may have held charm, at least some sense of purpose on the second go around. But eventually, surely, an essential truth became clear: never again.
Reddit is apparently crawling with people carrying around that permanent grudge towards some thing they've done in the past.
Lucky for us, we can learn from their mistakes.
senorllama57 asked, "What is something you will never do again?"
There were, of course, plenty of people who discussed horrible jobs they've held in the past. They may have had little choice at the time, but now that it's all in the past they feel free to share how they really felt.
The Customer Always Seems To Be Wrong
"Work retail. I think every kid fresh out of high school should work a retail job for a year. It builds character." -- ProfessionalTheme415
"How did you get out!?! Lol. It's like a black hole where I work. Everyone that tries to leave comes back." -- threebillion6
A Lot Going On
"Work in a nursing home. The sights, screams and pleas Will haunt me forever." -- M_Lamora
"Honestly working in a nursing home was one of the most weird jobs I ever had. I've never been threatened so many times in my life. I once had a memory care resident ask me if I would help her jump a caregiver."
One After Another
"Work in a call center." -- Evilsmurfkiller
"Sucked the soul right out of me within a year." -- Bandana-mal
"I was at one for 2 and half years and it was not until I left I realized I had work-related depression. I was overeating, not eating, sleep deprived, slept all the time, I had such rage that would come out at times...
"I did not care what happened to me, I left because they were gonna fire me over something dumb because they just fire people for being there long. I left over a year ago, and I have not been this happy to wake up every day in years, my life is so much better now." -- UnusualLight0
Others discussed past struggles they've encountered within the romantic realm. Unfortunately, these lessons came with plenty of emotional struggle.
"Get married. It'll be 19 years this August and my marriage is my marriage. I reserve the right to have a girlfriend at some point if she passes away before I do, but she's the one and only wife, end of story."
"Ignore red flags when talking to someone I want to date. I've done it twice now, and both times sucked" -- YareYareYandere
"Listen to your gut. If something feels off, you're probably not imagining it." -- SurealGod
Don't Forget About You
"Okay first off I'm sorry if this might sound cringe :D . . . That would be hmm become too attached/codependent on a person. Whether it may be of a lover, friend, or just acquaintance."
"Idk if it's coincidence but they either end up gone one day or become total di**s when you least expect it and I'm forced to cut ties."
And some people chose to recall the things they were so certain would be fun and enjoyable, but turned out to be so not.
A Bad Ratio
"I made a super elaborate meal once. It was ... okay. Certainly not worth the effort involved." -- Astramancer_
"Take an hour to make something, only takes 15 minutes to eat. It's bullsh**." -- SurealGod
Hours and Hours
"Times Square on New Years' Eve. It was fun once, never need to do it again." -- AnswerGuy301
"I was going to answer the same thing. It seemed like it would be so much fun but now that I know what it entails — never again" -- hi_its_me
"I have never been and never understood the attraction of waiting for hours and hours in the shivering weather." -- amrodd
Think of Grease Splatters
"Prepare steaks when drunk" -- Kiaulunne
"Not for your reason, but same here. Cooked one at 2am after half a bottle of rum. Quickly ate and passed out after. Woke up around 8am dying for water and realised I left the gas stove on... So glad nothing burned down..." -- schofield101
"I will never get drunk again. Tipsy, buzzed, sure. Thats fine."
"But when I was in front of that toilet for an hour, being so weak I couldn't even sit up, having people constantly come in to check on me, worrying that I might have alcohol poisoning, that is exactly not a fun time"
So take some notes! Or maybe there were some true horrors you went through that this list seems to be lacking.
You know what they say, “the road to hell is paved with good intentions". Because the people who have our best interests in mind typically have good intentions when they give us advice, but there's a chance that that advice can go horribly wrong.
Try not to follow the bad advice given here, because you don't want to get the results that these guys did.
The workplace can bring a cornucopia of terrible advice. Don’t follow these unless you want to get fired.
Bad jobs are usually not worth it.
Stick with a job no matter how bad it is. I stayed with a terrible job working retail, dealing with horrible customers and sexual harassment. I was told I wouldn't find anything better.
"No, no, you misunderstand. I said you wouldn't find anything better at making you feel like complete garbage."
This gets really creepy really fast.frustrated workplace GIFGiphy
"After you put in a job application, you need to call them at least once a day every day until they hire you."
Note: this did not get me hired. It got me called out by the HR person I was calling and forbidden to ever contact their facility again.
I work for a law firm that employees over 1500 people in the home office alone. Once I received a call from the building security saying, "Insert Name is here to speak with the owner." Well we are run by a committee so that's odd. Found out they just applied for a job and wanted to talk directly to the person that would potentially hire them. Told him the firm will contact them to schedule an interview. They refused to leave without "talking to the owner." Had security escort them out of the building.
This is absolutely not true.
"Sleep is for people who do not want success" great words from my uncle, it almost killed me.
Now I may be oversleeping.
Interpersonal relationships are also a big breeding ground for terrible advice. Don’t listen to any of these.
My father always tought me and my brother that "having friends is bad and in the end they will never be there for you" so everytime I told my father about my friends he would get kinda mad and give me the advice to stop talking to them.
Now I am afraid of people and have several trust issues, thanks dad.
This won’t end well.A Christmas Story GIF by filmeditorGiphy
In the fifth grade my teacher was talking about bullying, then she said "if anyone tries to bully you just agree with them." So the next time I got bullied I agreed with the bully and they bullied me more.
Dude one time I saw an anti bullying video that told the victims to just BE NICE TO THE BULLY. Like the bully was hurling insults and the victim was smiling and complimenting him. My first thought was about how much I hated the mere thought that this would work. My second thought was of how the people who came up with that method had clearly never been bullied.
When I met my now wife at the age of 19, one of my coworkers said that it's very important to start at the bottom with presents and work your way up, she still has the socks I gave her on our first anniversary on the wall over our bed as a reminder...
I'm still trying to teach my boyfriend about good presents and bad presents. Biscuits from the supermarket = bad present. Cheap unbranded laptop battery from China as my only present = bad present (and only lasted 2 months). Anything off my 7-page wishlist = good present. It's literally a list of things I want to receive as presents.
Can tell you from experience that this is a bad idea.
Had a falling out with some friends. My husband recommended I reach out to an old friend who ghosted me suddenly in a manner that induced some pretty severe abandonment trauma. Went for it anyways because "it's been so long, surely they changed". Am now experiencing the same things as last time.
When you follow bad advice, it can lead to mistakes that you just can’t come back from.
Buying a house is tricky.for sale dancing GIF by Lisa VertudachesGiphy
"Buy a home now before the prices go up!" -my FIL in 2006.
We bought in 2007 and paid $259,500 for our 1,300 sq ft house (we really couldn't afford it and had an 80/20 so we had 8% interest for one loan and 6% on the other) and in 2008 it was worth $97,000 so refinancing wasn't even an option. We watched all of our neighbors walk away or get foreclosed on but we kept paying our bills and as of this very moment our house is worth $462,000. I'm so happy we stuck it out, we both worked our @sses off and the house will be paid off in 2 years.
It worked out for us, it's a horrible idea. Especially since 1300 sq ft houses are $460+k
My heartbreaks for future generations, I honestly don't know how people are going to afford housing in the future.
It’s there for a reason.
"Never apply for any government assistance."
Cue years of suffering trying to work full-time with a painful disability. Quit a particularly terrible job, and wanted to apply for food aid until I could find another gig; a friend with lots of DHS experience recommended I apply for Social Security "just to get in the system." Turns out my disability was bad enough to get accepted the first time, which I wasn't expecting. Really could've used that support, oh, the 30+ previous years of my life.
Credit is important to have.
I was told to not get a credit card until after college. I was super fortunate to have my college paid for so I had no loans, car paid in cash, no credit card or anything to start building credit. Found myself out in the world at 22 years old with a credit score of 0.
So while a lot of this bad advice came from trusted people, oftentimes they were too misinformed to give that advice in the first place. Don't trust the word of one person--do your research, and make decisions for yourself.
It'll be way better in the long run
Every once in awhile, somebody comes along, enters your life, and catapults themselves to that awful, unique position at the top of your list of the worst people you have ever met.
Sometimes, the person's blindingly terrible behavior and overall essence is actually impressive. We ask ourselves, "how could a person like this actually exist on purpose?"
Alas, they do. And you have to deal with them. Or, if your lucky, you can carve out some distance.
Redditors shared descriptions of the worst people they've ever had the misfortune to meet. Some have escaped the relationship. Some are are still stuck in the clutches.
LoneStar202 asked, "Who is the worst person you have ever met?"
Some chose to talk about the acquaintances they simply couldn't help but encounter. External circumstances beyond their control made the stars align in the worst way possible.
Keeping the Peace
"There was this guy who used to come into the McDonald's where I did security overnight (yes, that's a job), and he was the biggest ahole I've ever met in my life."
"Ginger, 5'6 or so, named Colby, had a perpetual scowl on his face, looked for any reason to start a fight with anyone. He and his friend would come in when it's super busy, not order, and then yell at the staff that he paid and wasn't given a receipt in the hopes that they'd give him free food rather than deal with him."
"I kicked him out for six months on two separate occasions for coming in drunk and throwing things, drinking beer in the restaurant, starting fights, you name it. Only got in my face once and I never had to fight him, but I'm much bigger than him and the law is on my side."
"Not that I would necessarily have won. I'm big and strong, but I have no idea how to fight and he did. I called his bluffs because I was pretty sure he wouldn't attack me and he didn't."
"Funny, I just realized I've finally forgotten his last name. Not that I'd mention it. He might be less of a @ss now and he's no longer my business."
You Know 'Em
"I work with a real life, archetypal, Karen. She's two-faced, mean, anti-vax, and just generally the whole nine. The first interaction I ever had with her she had to make fun of me behind my back for being a dude with earrings."
"Recently kicked up a stink by making an 'anonymous' email address and emailing our HR department saying people were discriminating against folks not getting the covid vaccine.
"Luckily she's burned too many bridges for anyone to really take her crazy anymore but man is she frustrating to deal with."
Others discussed the family members that, for obvious reasons, they were forced to put up with for years and years. But even family isn't enough to keep a person like that around.
Marrying Into It
"It sounds cliche, but my ex-MIL. What made her the worst is that she was a covert POS."
"We always lived about 1k miles from them, so I didn't pick up on it for far, far too long, but goddamn, I've never met anyone with as much unacknowledged hate and cruelty in their heart."
A Thing of the Past
"My father. Cheater, never paid child support, verbally abusive to my mother, sister and I. Just all around bad dude."
"Haven't talked to him in about 15 years and am 100% ok with that."
So Many Problems
"My brother. He's like a cross between Kramer (Seinfeld, 'my newest thing' and mannerisms) and Frank from Its Always Sunny (illegal activity and completely illogical 'logic')."
"He's ripped me off for thousands of dollars (getting close to 5 figures). Constantly stealing anything he can, but claims 'borrowed' if caught with it. Been to jail 3 times and is currently on house arrest after over a year of probation violations. "
"The epitome of 'easier to say sorry than ask permission' (but the apologies are hollow) and 'what's yours is mine and what's mine is mine.' No consideration for anyone or anything. Manages to break virtually anything he touches. Hasn't had a job in over 1.5 years, but has been trying to fraudulently collect unemployment."
"Constantly thinks everyone is out to get him and people are stalking the camper he lives in (has security cameras that he watches frequently and often 'patrols' the area). Tries to break into locked doors and safe, and pulls the 'why don't you believe/trust me' line."
"I'm just scratching the surface here. He'd use your clippers/razor to shave his family jewels and not clean up the mess (something he's done multiple times)."
Finally, there were the stories of classmates. Whether it was high school, college, or even graduate school, there were enough people there all in one place that one or two rotten people were never far away.
"Guy from my high school was a wannabe thug. He ended up going to juvi junior year. After a year of juvi. He became a true criminal. Broke into people's homes. Stole from stores and got heavy into drugs."
"Then he eventually died after robbing the wrong store at gunpoint. The owner came out the back and shot him with a shotgun."
Wait for the Twist
"My gf's college classmate. Narcistic. Thought of himself as very important so he came into the church where we were graduating, on his HORSE. He damaged a 1000 or something-year-old church floor in Leiden. He thinks he didn't do anything wrong."
"And the weird thing is, we were graduating LAW SCHOOL"
Ride Like Lightning, Crash Like Thunder
"I had a classmate who wanted to become a stock broker and a millionaire. He said more than once, with absolute pride, 'When I'm rich I wont donate a single penny to the poor!' I asked him why and he said 'I have my own problems, and the poor being poor is not one of them.' "
"He opened his own business when he was 23 and was pretty successful, but suddenly a fire burned the place down while he was in it and he suffered from third degree burns all over his body."
"He later confessed setting the fire himself and was found guilty on insurance fraud. He's only 24 now and his professional life is basically over."
A Sudden Shift
"A teacher I once had. Didn't know me. Never spoke to me much."
"One day just randomly snapped at me. Yelling at me telling me that I had no future, that all the awards I got were to go to waste, that I the article I published which I spent hours working on and submitted didn't matter. That even though I was 14 and had many great achievements, I would end up just like that said teacher."
"Worst person I have ever encountered. Did collateral damage to my life as now I am a high school student with no more ambition. Wanna be a journalist? Wanna be a writer? A lawyer? Not anymore buddy."
Hopefully, you don't have too many of these people in your own life. But, let's face it, there's one or two people on your mind right now.
Here's hoping you managed to let go and get away.