Jason Howard: “He said he shat himself in his dream last night and feels uncomfortable riding the train to work”

Alex South

Alex South


Chefs discuss the best (or worst depending on how you look at it) call-in excuses they’ve heard from colleagues to get out of attending work.

What’s the best call-in excuse you’ve heard?

This was the question asked by chef Jason Howard, Quarter-finalist of MasterChef: The Professionals 2015, to his followers on Instagram.

We’ve compiled our favourite answers from Jason’s Instagram post, showcasing some hospitality’s most creative chancers.

Dave Critchley, Executive Chef of Lu Ban Liverpool and Mei Shi By Lu Ban, commented: “One chef had his coffee ‘spiked’ at 9am in the morning by his flat mate and was too baked to drive to work.”

Vegard Følstad, Chef at The Royal Norwegian Embassy in Italy, revealed his best excuse he used to get out of a shift.

“I might top this one for myself, I called in to say I would be late, reason being I was too hungover to understand how the newly installed lock on my door worked,” said the chef.

Instagram user, Zachery Elbourne, said: “Had a roommate call out of work once because she was scared to take the bus because there had been a murder at her bus stop the day before... on General Hospital.”

Chef Christopher Mayhue commented: “I had a line cook call in on December 26th, saying he couldn’t come in as he had too much Christmas.”

User Madison Cowan admitted that: “As a young cook in 90s Europe, I rang in 10 times over 3 years saying my dad died.”

@el_gordondito on Instagram said: “On time I called out because I thought my apartment got broken into but as the day went on I realized it was me drunk the night before kicking my front door in” Robert Morano of

@everydayisfeast day revealed: “I had a guy use me as his one call after being arrested, to tell me he wouldn't be making it to work.”

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Alex South

Alex South

Editor 27th January 2023

Jason Howard: “He said he shat himself in his dream last night and feels uncomfortable riding the train to work”