The Dingbat: Five foolproof extension excuses

We’re at that point in the semester when everyone around you is sniffling, UberEats has become your best friend and you’re falling behind in at least one course (or let’s be honest, all of your courses). If you’re still going to class, you inspire me to be a better version of myself everyday. Except, I choose to do nothing with this inspiration whatsoever.

But on the off-chance that you are also just a burnt-out human being whose middle name is procrastination, this is for you. Because honestly, no matter how much you say “this week is really crazy for me! But, I can do it.” you know it’s about damn time to ask for an extension.

Got a paper whose prompt immediately gave you mental diarrhea? Or perhaps an assignment that seems to suck the soul right out of you the minute you open the tab? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with these foolproof excuses to get you out of doing your work (for now).

“I was personally victimized by Kip the Coyote.”

I know I’m slandering my favourite campus canine by suggesting this one, but for the greater good of humanity I had to.

The UBC equivalent of “my dog ate my homework,” this excuse is foolproof for a couple of reasons.

Firstly, how the fuck is your professor going to verify that you were, indeed, attacked/hunted/stalked by a coyote?

Secondly, your professor is probably just as scared of coyotes as you are, so by the time they even read the first line of your extension email, they’ll be on their knees trying to give it to you.

“Mercury is in retrograde.”

I’m willing to bet money on the fact that there are definitely some professors out here who are secretly astrology hoes. I have a sneaking suspicion that many exist in the English department, and almost all of them must congregate outside Buchanan Tower every full moon.

If you know for sure that your professor is one of these yassified horoscope fanatics, this is the best excuse to use. Nobody would dare to leave their house during retrograde, so what’s a pesky little assignment?

Bonus points if you manage to say “mercury is in retrograde” and not “in gatorade” (Yes, I spend too much time on TikTok).

“The bus broke down.”

You know why this excuse slaps? Because it’s realistic and would work for any in-person submission. I know for sure that this excuse worked for me when I straight up slept through a final exam in first year…

Anyone who’s been on a bus knows the horror of the bus going off its lines and then having to wait around for the operator to get out and fix it. Although I’d say this excuse might work slightly better when there’s snow (ha, Translink could never keep up with the TTC), no professor would dare argue with the infamy of our bus system.

Especially since I’ve seen professors taking the bus myself (and they look rather fashionable too, mysterious enigmas on a packed R4), I suspect they might have some extra empathy for you here.

“The yellow structure outside Mercante gave me an incurable headache.”

This one’s for my pals who have class in West Mall Swing Space, or just generally find themselves strolling around the Ponderosa/Marine area.

Truly, I feel for you. Any aesthete could prove (in under 2 seconds) how dirty Cumbria (yeah... that’s what the yellow things are called) did the art world when it found itself plopped on our campus. The victims? All the people who have to walk past it every day.

If I were your professor, rest assured you’d have an extension not just for this paper, but I’d personally write hate mail to the university for putting this unit up in the first place. If your prof actually loves you, they would do the same.

“I have the frat flu.”

For some of you, this might actually be a valid excuse (not like the others in this article aren’t, obviously). With Hallo(hoe)ween past us, I would literally not be surprised if a good chunk of the student body has been infected by the infamous frat flu.

So, you didn’t go to the frats? No biggie, that hot guy beside you in class most definitely threw it back in the Greek Village all weekend. Oh, you aren’t even in Greek life? Girl, half the clubs you crawl through are hangout spots for the bros.

I’m convinced that the profs dislike Greek life enough to shudder instinctively upon reading this excuse. The frat flu might as well be some rare Victorian sickness because, honestly, most of them (and us) don’t even know what it is.

The Dingbat is The Ubyssey’s humour section. Send pitches and completed pieces to