YOU’VE made the terrible mistake of agreeing to meet, visit or otherwise interact with a close personal friend. How can you get out of it?
Have you got Covid? Have they got Covid? Has someone in either of your circles begun self-isolating? Best not risk it then. It’s Willy Wonka’s golden ticket in reverse, and you’ve only got so long to use it. When you’re then seen out the pub, simply claim you’ve had a lateral flow.
Risk factor: 1/10
A fog of vagueness
Don’t give them anything specific. Just be unsure you can make it, then doubtful you can make it, only saying ‘well it’s this thing’, dodging, changing the subject, moving on like Boris Johnson questioned about who paid for his Caribbean holiday. Nobody can fight the fog.
Risk factor: 3/10
‘Such a shame but you’ve got something that day. I know!’ They know you’re lying. You know they know. They know you know etc. But the unspoken agreement that you all play along means you won’t be challenged, in case they want to do the same thing to you next time.
Risk factor: 4/10
Should be reserved for work skives, but you might lazily blurt it out. Then if your friend’s former neighbour’s son’s best friend’s sister follows your supposedly dying Aunt Ethel you could be exposed, Ethel could find out, and the shock of hearing she’s at death’s door could kill her. And now you’ve got a funeral and a wake to wriggle out of.
Risk factor 7/10
The unvarnished truth
‘I like you, but I’ve got used to not doing this and I’d rather slump in front of the telly than come round yours and eat your food and hear your opinions.’ Sometimes it’s kinder to administer a dose of reality than to lie. And if it’s received badly and you lose a friend, then that’s more time for you to watch Tipping Point.
Risk factor 9/10