Going to Work with a Black Eye
*Editors Note- this also applies to face scrapes*
It should surprise none of you that I am generally regarded as one of the biggest bad boys in Corporate America history. I don’t do expense reports on time, I never attend team-building exercises and I have shown up at the office with a glaring facial wound four times in my adult life. Last Friday morning, I finally got lucky number 5.
I woke up after a night of abusing alcohol with a gigantic cut down my nose after I failed in executing one of the greatest jokes alive – pretending to walk into a stop sign and hitting it loudly with your hand and foot – and actually just smacked my face into the stop sign. Turns out, nose scrapes take a long time to heal and I’ve had to walk around with a Band-Aid on my nose during a national sales conference this entire week. Not great, but it’s not in vain – I get to share my wisdom with you and my coworkers get to think slightly less of me. Everyone wins!
1. You Need to Own It
This is #1 because it’s the most important. That’s how these lists work. If you are thinking for one second that you’re staying home from work, go ahead and give yourself a second black eye because that is the words of an imbecile. You’re just going to come in on Tuesday with a slightly less black eye? Wake up.
I’m not saying you should go up to people and say “Haha how about this slash across my face right?” but don’t hide in a corner and sulk. People will think something serious happened to you. You want them to think you are a deranged psychopath, but like a fun one. Ok champ? That’s why…
2. You Need a Good Excuse
Do NOT tell the truth. Eventually the story will come out after a few beers at happy hour, but you need to get through today. In my experience, most people won’t even ask about it because they’re too polite. However, someone is bound to ask, whether it’s your friend or some annoying guy who tries to make you look bad in front of your boss whenever he can RYAN.
You want to downplay what happened without being specific. It should be clear you’re probably lying (so you can cultivate your bad boy persona) but you don’t want important people thinking you are a true lunatic. Generally, I say I got elbowed playing basketball or hit with a softball. Skiing is a great winter excuse as well. When I was playing rugby, it was a dream scenario – I had an easy built in excuse every time.
If you are clearly not a former high school 2nd Team All Conference athlete like myself, I have no excuses for you. Maybe like you opened a cabinet and hit your eye? Just start ju jitsu on the weekends or something to have the excuse ready.
3. You Need to Learn How to Use Cover Up
In my trials and tribulations, I have accumulated an incredible amount of makeup and concealer to help hide my battle scars (gashes from table topping my friend who then kneed me in the eye at a NASCAR tailgate.) You don’t need this much and makeup is very expensive. Ladies, I don’t know how you do it. Tip of the cap.
Generally, you need a little of the cream stuff and some of the brush and powder stuff. I would be very careful with this one, because chances are it will look completely horrible and make it even more obvious that you are injured. Your goal should not be to cover EVERYTHING up. No. Your goal is to manage the wound and make it look a little less Harry Pottery.
Ask a girl you know to help you. If you don’t know any girls, go harass women on the street. They will find this charming. If you’re a girl, I’m not going to explain to you how to do make up in your mid twenties. You may have missed the boat on this one.
4. Enjoy It
Life in an office is incredibly mundane. You are going to be the biggest news story of the entire week, easily surpassing how they changed the coffee machine and that time Aaron from sales was kind of a dick in a meeting. You can hide from your destiny like a scared child. Or you can embrace it.
There are so many incredible joke opportunities with a black eye. “You should see the other guy!” or “Let’s just say (insert your rival company) won’t be bother us anymore!” or “I got punched in the face at Santacon and someone filmed it and put it on their Instagram story and it’s semi viral right now.” Generally, when someone asks me what happened to my face, I say “good genetics and a consistent skincare routine, why do you ask?” and we all share a nice chuckle. That’s what we call ‘office funny,’ which is not actually funny but more funny than saying “working hard or hardly working?”
The point is, for once in your sad life, people will think there is something interesting about you. Don’t blow it.