Saturday, November 2, 2013

Guest Note: David

So my friend David Justin took up the challenge to pen his own sick note.  I liked it so I am sharing it here.

Dear ______, 

We accept the fact that we had to sacrifice several days in our bedroom for whatever it was we were sick from, but we think you’re crazy to make us write an essay telling you who we think we are. You see us as you want to see us, in the simplest terms and the most convenient definitions. But what we found out, while we were throwing up and vomiting and having flu like symptoms, is that each of us is: 
A Brain… 
And an Athlete… 
And a Baket case… 
A princess…. 
A sick child… 
And a criminal… 

Does that answer your question? 

Sincerely yours, 
The Breakfast Club (Your Signature Here)

Anyone else wanna give it a go?


October 23, 2013

Since this one was so close to Halloween, I had to do something along that theme.  I contemplated zombies, but nothing came together.  I finally started thinking about Poe and decided I could adapt the Raven.  I followed his rhyming style closely.  All the lines but the first and third should have rhymed with "more."  I just made sure they rhymed each other.  Yeah, I'm sure he's spinning in his grave, too. 


September 6, 2013

This one took longer to write than any other sick note.  Once I had the idea, it flowed pretty well, but I worked like crazy to come up with all the crazy metaphors and get them to fit the overall theme.  I also find it interesting that the formatting is changing and moving farther and farther from looking like a letter to the teacher.  I am having to mention it being a sick note in the story to give them even a hint.

I am curious if everyone else hears the cheesy Sam Spade noir accent in their head as they read this.  I sure did as I wrote it...

Friday, November 1, 2013


February 26, 2013

A lot of people didn't get this one or just didn't like it.  It cracked me up, and usually that's all I'm going for, since I am my own worst critic.  I did have a lot of fun saying the phrases over and over again trying to parse out similar sounding words.  It helps if you read it out loud.

DJ Daddy Def

February 19, 2013 (yes, the date on the letter has the wrong year, sue me)

This note generated more comments on Facebook than any note before or since.  I had a lot of fun writing it once I had the idea.  The only problem I have with it is that the song got stuck in my head for a solid week.  I always wonder if the kids will read this when they are older and if they will get any of the jokes or references. 

Big Meany

February 6, 2012

Occasionally when the kids stay home sick, they get better pretty quick.  But, I can't let them just do what they want, or they will take advantage of me and I will be writing sick notes every week.  So, unless there is an ongoing fever or I can tell they are very sick, I will make them read and nap.  They will get no computer time and little play time.  This is universally a very unpopular stance and has more than once caused my "Dad of the Year" nomination to be revoked....


November 7, 2012

This note was fun just to see how many references I could come up with that were recognizable.  Also, I like the wordplay with literately, especially since Sophie went through a brief phase where she literally used the word "literally" in almost every conversation.  I must have gotten through to her, though, since now she will say if she is using it properly or just exaggerating...

We interrupt your regularly scheduled sick note...

Mother's Day 2012

This isn't a sick note.  This is the picture frame I put together for my wife for Mother's Day.  But I like it a lot, so I'm going to post it.  So there.  I blame the kids....

Disney Blues

April 18, 2012

I gotta say, when I said I was hoping the kids would move on from shows like Spongebob, I certainly did not mean for them to start watching iCarly and some of the awful Disney shows that make cheesy 80's era sitcoms seem positively cerebral.  They are horribly painful to watch, but at least I am able to steal ideas from them.


Also, the idea of my sweet girl being an iron-fisted despot cracks me up every time.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

I love form letters

March 6, 2012

I had been kicking around the idea of a form letter for a while.  This one was just a lot of fun.  Plus I was able to recycle it for the other kid.  And with my wife....

Good luck and godspeed!

February 23, 2012

The first year, we got a lot of fun feedback from Sophie's kindergarten teacher.  Since then, none of the teachers have really remarked on these notes.  We are always wondering if they think I'm a crackpot or if they actually enjoy them. 

This is one of my favorites.  I enjoy being able to put a theme to a note and this one definitely succeeded. 

The Mondays

February 7, 2012

On the 6th, I sent Sophie back to school and then had to keep Devlin home.  He was a trooper, though.  He had a good excuse to stay home longer, but he didn't want to miss any more school.  I suspect that will not last...

Spaceman Spiff

February 6, 2012

This is where we were introduced to the recurring theme of "one kid recovers as the other falls ill."  As usual, Sophie was the first to fall and stayed home sick.  You can always tell when a kid is actually sick as they will plant themselves in one spot and not move all day.  Apparently I was reading Calvin and Hobbes somewhere around then, because this note is definitely inspired by it. 

And to all a Good [blerg!]

December 19, 2011

Thank goodness we didn't travel that Xmas.  Both kids caught something and the vomit flowed in rivers.  I believe I spent a lot of time in the bedroom.  Doing important things.  Totally not hiding.  No, really.  Yeah, what do you know?

Sophie had it first and, of course, recovered just in time to go back to school before Xmas break.  Devlin showed his love by not getting sick until school was out, thus sparing me from having to write a note. 

Nothing to see here, move along

November 28-December 1, 2011

When the kids get sick, I will either duck it completely or they will mutate it into a quantum hybrid supervirus tailored specifically to my DNA.  I still occasionally check for hidden biolabs under their beds or in their closets, but have not found anything conclusive.  In late November, my son Devlin was sick and home for an entire week.  By the time he went back to school, I was ready to move into a plastic tent with people in biohazard suits sticking me with needles.  Sophie caught it too, but she had the unmutated version and bounced right back.  Needless to say, I didn't write either note.  Our friends knew I spent that week praying for death.  I still got a lot of grief for not writing those notes.  If it happens again, I fear they will form a mob with torches and pitchforks.

Dr. Daddy™

September 23, 2011

I'm always amazed how quickly into the school year Sophie will get sick, even knowing that elementary schools are one big petri dish.  This sickness was especially worrisome, though.  I now had two children in school.  I had no idea how I was going to be able to keep up with the notes.

This is also the second note that mentions the show House, M.D.  You can probably tell I was a big fan.  I had to force myself not to mention it again.

Also, I forgot Rocking Pneumonia, Boogie Woogie Flu and Jungle Fever.  And Swine Flu, Bird Flu, Unicorn Flu, the list goes on and on....

Little Red Hoodie

April 21, 2011

Normally, when the kids get sick, it's pretty minor and my biggest worry is what I'm going to do for the sick note.  This was 2 1/2 years ago and I can still vividly remember looking at Sophie on the couch as she started panting in her sleep.  You truly do not understand fear until you have kids.  Luckily, the wonderful nurse practitioners who take frantic calls from parents are very understanding.  The one upside is that I had a full three days to write this. 

Jackson Pollock

February 16, 2011

Between ridiculous amounts of snow (without a working snow blower) and Sophie getting sick every two weeks, I was getting desperate for ideas.  Luckily, as you will see in the note, the manner in which she let us know she was sick provided all the inspiration I needed.  This is still one of my favorite sick notes.  Also, I misspelled Jackson Pollock's name.  Incidentally, if you don't know who that is, he was a painter they nicknamed Jack the Dripper.

Also, I need to pay tribute to my wife.  I am very bad with vomit.  I will run away when my kids are throwing up.  This is almost a phobia for me and my wife is absolutely a saint for understanding this and doing the vast majority of cleanup when the kids get sick.  

A Note in Rhyme

February 4, 2011

This absence was so close behind the last one I felt a bit cheated.  I racked my brain, but nothing came to mind.  Finally, I decided on the highest form of poetry, the limerick.  This note also spawned an interesting debate on whether I was legitimately eccentric or just weird.  The jury is still out on that one...

The Trap Closes Around Me

January 18, 2011

When Sophie was out sick the second time in kindergarten, my wife casually mentioned this to a couple friends.  Both asked if I was going to write a funny sick note.  Sure, what can it hurt, I thought, in a moment of naivete.  The response on Facebook for my wife's posting was much bigger than the last one.  I suddenly realized that this had become a "thing."  If I ever failed to write another humorous sick note, I would now let down legions of our friends and get eternal grief.  The shackles had truly closed. 

In case you can't read my handwriting:

Lord Rutz,

I most humbly beg forgiveness that Squire Sophia missed her knightly training.  After the Harvest she was forced to defend our homeland and demesne from the evil brigand known only as "Fever."  As she has shown great Honor and Fortitude in her struggles, I trust you will allow her to resume her studies.  If the three fatted calves I have sent along are not suitable tithe, please so inform me.

Humble Regards,
Lord Hawkins of Timberline

How it began

November 4, 2010

For kindergarten, my daughter (oldest child) had a very funny and very laid back teacher.  When she was sick for the first time, my wife told me I needed to write her a sick note.  This really startled me.  Sure, maybe I was technically old enough to be writing a sick note, but I still felt like I was doing something wrong.  Sick notes were always the official document that got you past the border guards and back into the gulag.  If I was writing one, then I had become part of the machinery!  That means I'm OLD!  So, I had a lot of trouble taking it seriously.  Also, I kept flashing back to old reruns of Welcome Back Kotter and the kid, Epstein, who always brought notes to the teacher signed, "Epstein's Mother." 

After I wrote this, my lovely wife officially doomed me for the rest of my children's school career by posting it to Facebook.  I believe it was the most comments she had gotten on a post up to that point.