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How to Fake Being Sick

Pulling a Ferris Bueller is easier than you think—if you plan ahead.


  • Step 1: Commit this list to memory ... Commit this list to memory: a fever of 100 degrees or more, vomiting, diarrhea, earache, and sore throat. Doctors say these are valid reasons to miss school, so what parent would disagree?
  • Step 2: Keep a log Keep a log of dates and excuses so you can prevent patterns from developing.
  • TIP: Never brag about missing days over the phone, e-mail or IM. You never know when your communications might be intercepted by an adult.
  • Step 3: Fake onset of symptoms Become skilled at faking the onset of symptoms. Digestive ailments generally occur suddenly, while other maladies begin presenting themselves the night before.
  • TIP: Lay necessary groundwork Lay the necessary groundwork—at dinner, mention how scratchy your throat is and don’t eat a thing, especially dessert!
  • Step 4: Make fake vomit If necessary, pull out the big guns. Broken cornflakes mixed with a little water make an excellent stand-in for vomit.
  • Step 5: Fake your temperature If your parents demand further proof, drink hot liquids before taking your temperature to produce a false reading.
  • Step 6: Enjoy your success Congratulations! Your mom ordered you to stay home. When you sneak out, make sure you’re back before anyone notices you’re missing.
  • FACT: An estimated 150,000 young people, usually in their late teens or early twenties, are diagnosed with infectious mononucleosis each year.

You Will Need

  • A notebook to record dates and excuses
  • A somewhat gullible parent
  • Acting skills
  • Corn flakes
  • Hot liquids

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