How to pull a sickie

You know how it is – you stayed up late last night, because you had to watch American Gladiators at midnight, because you’re poor and don’t have a long play video recorder. On top of that, you’ve got PE this morning, and you don’t want to run around in your cullottes losing at rounders with your fat on display.

There’s only one thing for it – start developing that dicky tummy you definitely had last night. Maybe you had some gone off turkey drummers? Or maybe you caught something from your friend who your mum thinks is “a bit common”.

Whatever – you’re now at death’s door and can’t go to school.


Pro tip: don’t actually draw spots on yourself with felt tip – this almost never works.

The first thing that happens now, according to protocol, is your mum comes and feels your forehead. If you have a hot fod, it’s plain sailing from here: hot fods = ill, according to mums. Doesn’t matter if it’s the middle of July. If you don’t have a fever, don’t worry – there are lots of ways you can be ill, such as limping. The number one trick to convincing people you’re ill is to say “I don’t feel well”.

This could go two ways. What you don’t want is your mum saying “Well, go to school and lets see how you get on”, because she knows as well as you do that the teachers are 800% less likely to believe your bullshit. DO NOT let her deposit you in the school building. If you do, then all is lost. Do whatever you have to do to avoid this – clutch your chest, have a fit, actually die – whatever, just convince her you are ill. Otherwise, rounders.

If your mum is a kind and understanding mum, she will immediately go “Oh no, you have pleurisy!” and immediately plop you on the settee, where you will remain for the rest of the day.

Once you are deposited on your settee bed for the day, accompanied by your quilt and a glass of Lucozade that your mum has produced out of nowhere, it’s time for the most nerve wracking part of the morning’s proceedings – the phone call.

Your mum must now phone the school to tell them you are at death’s door, and as such will miss a day of light maths and PE. At this point, you are convinced the school will immediately reply “Fuck off, do you think we were born yesterday? Drag her up to the school gates now, or we will call the rozzers.” As if your non-appearance in Mr Patterson’s ‘tens and units’ lesson will break the fucking world.

Needless to say, the school believes your mum, and you’re in the clear! Hooray! Time for a day of Lucozade, lounging, and daytime TV, punctuated by spoons of Calpol.


Incidentally, someone put together a compilation of all the Kilroy intros. Knock yourself out.

Other fine fare you might watch on your well earned day off includes:

The Time The Place

Give Us A Clue

Going For Gold

A Country Practice

This Morning

Pebble Mill

The Young Doctors

The Flying Doctors

The thing that made these shows so brilliant to see on a sick day was the fact that they weren’t repeated. At all. Apart from on other weekday mornings, when you were supposed to be learning ‘capacity’ and using the trundle wheel. As such, this was your only chance to see these curiosities, shit as they were.

going for gold

Your main task is to lie there feeling smug about missing rounders, so you shouldn’t worry too much about what’s on TV, that’s just a bonus. And anyway, if it’s Friday that means Rainbow’s on at lunchtime, and that’s always good.

Speaking of lunch, you’ll probably be hungry after your hard morning of Kilroy and malingering. Sadly, all you will get to eat is chicken soup, whether you want chicken soup or not. Best to just go along with this – if you start demanding Viennetta for lunch, your mum will start to suspect that you’re not really ill.

After lunch, it’s time for some light reading or colouring, or maybe a sneaky game of He-Man with the action figures you smuggled from upstairs. Again, I cannot stress enough how important it is to keep acting like you have the strength of a dandelion, so if you are going to play He-Man, do it quietly under the quilt.

Around 4 O’clock is a good time to suddenly make a miraculous recovery. It’s important that you’re feeling better by teatime, because you’re getting a Chinese, and no amount of pleurisy is going to stand between you and your fried rice.

After tea you may resume normal activities, such as running round yelling with your finger up your nose, and getting told off for saying the word ‘willies’. Your mum will be convinced that her superior nursing skills are to thank for your renewed vigour, so that’s nice. If it’s Friday, you now have a bonus two days to hang round the house being annoying. If not, then at least you’ve missed Ben Richardson trying to throw a rounders ball at your face. All in all, I’d call that a success.

7 thoughts on “How to pull a sickie

  1. You’ve missed out some awesome sick day telly here – Pob, The Adventures Of T-Bag and You & Me. Although in fairness Give Us A Clue was my favourite.



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