Talking Shit

¿Que Pasa, M.I.A.? My Excuses For Being Late

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Not too long ago, as impossible as it looks, sounds and seems, I held a day job. It was a mundane era of wearing socks, shaving, and having far fewer groupies. Sometimes, I needed to call this day job of mine and tell them I was not feeling so good. Every time I called in sick, I felt a sense of doubt from the other end of the line that made me want to act more ill than I really was.

It is an awkward position to be in. It was not unlike when you're on your way to meet a girl's family, and right when you get off the Palmetto in Hialeah, she sends you a text message that says, "If my parents ask, u r 20."

Whenever I woke up sick, I felt a panic, a need to emphasize the feeble sickness in my voice. I would hope that my boss wouldn't ask me to explain why I couldn't come in to work. I'd think about it for 10 minutes.

What if he makes me come in? What if this splitting headache is not enough reason? Should I invent some sort of bowel symptoms when asked? Should I add a food poisoning scenario? Who would poison my food? Do I have a likely suspect to accuse of putting poison in my sopa de pollo?

The explanation that always works involves feeling so bad that you couldn't sleep the night before. That keeps you safe from going in. "Mr. Boss, I don't feel well and couldn't sleep at all last night. I must stay home and rest to become a stronger more powerful employee tomorrow."

There is also the business of calling in late. One time I was running a few minutes late to work, and I got pulled over by a cop. I was relieved; I did not need to make up an excuse. The no-left-turn sign and Officer Diaz gave me written proof and a great alibi.    

Now, when I'm running late I consider doing whatever I can to make myself have a good reason to be late. Swerving into a tree. Slashing my own tires. Breaking my hand.

I learned from the best. In eighth grade I had a friend named José Sanchez. We were at a party that we did not like. And instead of asking his parents to just pick us up because the party wasn't fun, he decided it would be more effective to say, "Mom, Dad, please pick us up, there are gang members doing cocaine at this party." It worked great, his parents were there within minutes and weren't annoyed. They were just extremely worried that we ended up at cocaine-fueled knife party.

I'd like to elaborate on the topic of tardiness, absenteeism, and excellent excuses, but, I need to run right now. You see, my cousin Yarisleydi just broke up with her boyfriend, and she thinks she might be pregnant by either her ex-boyfriend or a teacher at school. Long story short: If I don't go over and talk to her I think she's going to use drugs and start illegal hobbies.

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Jose el Rey