What is the best (story-wise) excuse you’ve had from a student for why he or she can’t turn something in on time or come to class?
One student came to me, frazzled and with a retinue of happy friends, with this story, if I can get my facts straight. He was going to his room to finish his paper. It happened to be 3:30am. But, on the way he had to go see a friend down the street. On the way he got in between some gang members, and they held him up and stood him up next to a car. They had a gun to his head and to his side. He didn’t have much money. They stole his money and wallet. Then he had to call the police, and he had to file a report, and then he was so scared and pumped when he got back (around 7:30am) that he didn’t have time to get it done. “Can I turn it in tomorrow?,” he asked.
I asked him if he was an English Major (read: Fiction writer and story teller).
Another student e-mailed me to get out of a MidTerm. She had missed more sessions than she should have, and this was a Jesus class, so I expected a little honesty. She asked to be excused from a MidTerm date because a close family friend had died and the funeral was at the time of the MidTerm. It was one of those things: I was sure she was “writing” fiction. So, I said to her, “Sure, just bring the Funeral Bulletin and then I’ll give you the Exam.” She delayed a week or two. Finally, she came to me with the Bulletin — it was a 92 year former priest who had died, and he hadn’t served in the parish since the 1960s and she was born in about 1980. Her comment, “Well, not exactly a family friend, but my grandma knew him well.”