It is flu season and I am one of those assholes who go to work anyways.
Yes, it’s true. I have absolutely no qualms about infecting my coworkers with my reddened, snot-nosed germs. In fact I will gladly suffer through hours of isolation in my office using up a full box of tissues and starring miserably at my computer screen if it means that I won’t come back to a mountain of work and a depleted sick bank.
Don’t get me wrong, dear reader, I love staying home curled up in a blanket in front of ‘Once Upon a Time’ reruns with zero company, a massive cup of tea and an excuse not to shower but sometimes that luxury just isn’t feasible.
Now, since my accident, I am certainly more relaxed about my occasional need for sick time. (Sick happens.) It has actually been humbling to learn that the world does run without me and that deadlines don’t explode if I am not in the office. But even with this knowledge I still have a hard time not doing work.
I love my job, I enjoy my work, and I hate coming back to the office well rested but still not quite ready to face a hundred emails.
Instead I’d much rather wash my hands excessively and stare miserably at the screen as those emails trickle in at a manageable rate, saving my coughing fits for whenever the phone rings.
And despite the fact that I loathe other people who come in sick to work I really enjoy my double standard.
Besides, I get far less interruptions on days when I look like Patient Zero in the next big plague.
So for you, dear reader, in honour of Flu Season, I would like to share my tips for getting through a work day without dying of the plague:
- Make sure you bring in your own box of Kleenex. Most offices provide Kleenex but it’s usually cheap and scratchy. If you know you are going to spend the entire day with a tissue against your face why use one that’s going to feel like broken glass? Trust me on this. Spend the extra couple of dollars and enjoy your day in (relative) comfort.
- Don’t wear makeup. Honestly. It’s best to look as bad as you feel in this situation to cut back on interruptions and allow people to truly believe you when you say you are sick. Sure, your coworkers will resent you for showing up anyway, but as long as they leave you alone who cares?
- Wear comfy clothes. I usually skulk in wearing my black yoga pants and a business-y yet cozy sweater on days that I am deathly ill. This way I can be comfortable while still looking professional (at least if one squints from a distance).
- Bring at least one travel mug for tea (and tea bags!). It’s going to be way too much effort to walk to the local coffee shop so you may as well boil some water at work. Bonus points for doing it during high traffic times like coffee and lunch so you can show even more people your dedication to coming into work.
- Whine all the time! This increases the likelihood that people will do some of your work for you, even if it’s just to avoid having to come within a 20 foot radius of your office. This way you can be miserable AND have some leisure time.
There are many other tried and true tips but I don’t want to give away all my secrets.
Stay healthy, dear reader!
As an aside: My love of hyperbole will be skipping this Flu Season. Having actually been hit by a van I can honestly say having the flu feels nothing like being run-over. Go figure.