Lindsay Lohan rescues child laborers in India…or not

Looks like miss Lindsay Lohan has gone on a little “liecation” recently.

The actress/singer/celebrity trainwreck posted a message on Twitter that made it sound like she personally took part in a raid that saved child laborers in India while there filming a documentary for the BBC. “Over 40 children saved so far…Within one day’s work…This is what life is about…Doing THIS is a life worth living!!!”

But according to the New York Daily News, the charity that performed the raid in New Delhi said Lohan wasn’t even in India at the times. A rep for the BBC came to Lohan’s defense and said that her tweet never said that Lohan personally was there. It’s all just a misunderstanding, she said.

Maybe…or maybe Lindsay just didn’t follow Scott’s advice about how to create the perfect liecation and not get caught.

TSA disproves blogger’s claim that agent took her baby

On Friday, a blogger reported a harrowing tale that would make any parent furious with the TSA. She claims that, while going through security, she was detained because her son’s pacifier clip set off the metal detector. When she was pulled aside for a search, her son was taken away from her by a male TSA agent and was out of her sight for several minutes.

On her blog, she recounts the story of how she was so upset that she screamed obscenities, almost blacked out, and frantically phoned her husband and mother over the course of the nearly ten minutes that her child was out of her sight. She says when the agent finally returned with her son, she ran to him. Once she was allowed to leave, she headed to the bathroom, again nearly blacked out, and took the “emergency Xanax” that she keeps with her at all times because she suffers from severe anxiety.

Well, she might want to take a few more Xanax, because it sounds like this whole episode may have been the result of anxiety-induced hallucinations. The TSA has released proof that the incident, as the blogger claims, never happened.

The video of the blogger and her son going through security has been posted on the TSA website. The nearly 10-minute long video clearly shows that not once was her son out of her sight, that she never picked up her cellphone and that a TSA agent never held her child (though one did pat him down for about 10 seconds). While she is being patted down, her son is visible no more than three feet away, siting in his stroller. Even her claim that her belongings were left on the conveyor belt is false. A TSA agent brings them to the search area shortly after she walks over.

It’s easy to get mad at the TSA, with their frequent fumbles and ever-changing rules about liquids, powders, and shoes. Who likes being forced to walk barefoot (or in my case, often in mismatched socks) around an airport or to have to wait (as she did) ten minutes to be cleared through security? But if you’re thinking of getting even with a falsified account like this, just remember: when dealing with the TSA, you’re always on camera.

How to get out of work and make the most of your Labor Day weekend

Back in June, maybe getting away for Labor Day weekend just didn’t seem possible. Maybe there were too many looming commitments or perhaps money seemed too tight. But now your time has been freed up and you’re seeing all the low-priced flights and deals available for Labor Day. You’re ready to get out of town and three days just isn’t enough. But the odds of your boss granting you an extra day off this late in the game are slim. How can you weasel out of work and make the most of your Labor Day weekend?

Step 1: Assess the situation
Determine how likely your boss is to grant you the time off. think about what matters most to your boss and how they treat time off. This will determine your strategy. Is your boss a sucker for a sad story? Can you pull on his or her heartstrings to score the time off? How heavy is your workload, and will going missing a day put any of your co-workers in a bad position? Is your boss understanding when you are ill or does he or she expect you to come in anyways?

Step 2: Know the company policy
Some offices have a policy that if you call in sick on a day immediately before or after a holiday, you don’t get paid for the time, or you may need to provide a doctor’s note. Others limit the number of staff that can take vacation on the same day. Knowing what rules your company has will also help you form your strategy.

Step 3: Form a plan
If you think there’s a good chance your boss will give you the day off, it’s best to just come right out and ask. But, the way you ask can determine the answer. Asking for time off to go on a last-minute fun-filled vacation may sound frivolous to a hard-working boss. Taking the day to volunteer or get in some much-needed medical appointments might go over better. A more sympathetic boss might be swayed if you say that some cherished relatives you haven’t seen in years are coming into town just for the day, or that it’s “family day” at the assisted-living home where your dear, aging grandparents live and you’ll be so disappointed to miss it. Be sure to stress how important the day off is to you, and reassure your boss that you won’t get behind on your work by missing another day. If you think it’s highly unlikely the boss will give you the time off, a better strategy might be to just plan on calling in sick or having a “family emergency” come up.

Step 4: Lay the Groundwork
Now is the time to start building the base of your excuse. If you plan on asking directly, just do it. But if you’ll be getting sick, start working up a gentle cough, sniffling occasionally, and talk about how run-down you feel. Let your personal appearance get a little ragged, keep a bottle of cough medicine on your desk, and mention that at your spouse’s/roommate’s office, the flu is going around. Or explain that you have a mild toothache (which will then require an emergency root canal on your chosen day off) or that your car has been making weird noises lately (which is a prelude to it breaking down so you can’t get to work).

Step 5: Enjoy your day off. . . but be careful
If you’ve asked for and been granted the day off, good for you. If not, and you are going with the dishonest option, make sure you don’t return to work with the unmistakable look of someone who has just been on vacation. A deep tan is a sure giveaway. If you opted to be “sick”, you should appear to recover over the course of a few days. If your car “broke down”, mention the costly repairs and be sure to not park your perfectly fine car in the same lot as the boss’!

If a full day off isn’t what you’re after, you can still make the most of the three-day weekend by extending your travel time a little. Take off right from work on Friday, leaving a few hours early if you can. If you are flying to your destination, try to book the first flight back on Tuesday morning. You’ll get a few extra hours of vacation by not coming back Monday night, and you won’t have to miss more than an hour or two of work. you can keep your boss happy, and squeeze just a bit more time into your three-day weekend.

Creating the perfect “liecation” – and how to prevent getting busted

So, you read our little story on the new trend of “liecations”, and you too want to create your own little fake vacation? Well, even though the whole thing is incredibly tacky, and downright stupid, we know the economy is tough, and a trip abroad might not be possible this year.

Of course, the right thing to do is tell people you are staying home, but if the liecation trend is to be believed, there really are people out there that would rather lie than just chill out at home being honest.

To create the perfect liecation, you’ll need to find the perfect balance between plausible lies, and downright pathetic lies. For example – don’t claim you went on a 2 week safari to Kenya. The same applies to a liecation involving Mount Everest. European liecations are easy, as are any liecations in North America.

Before I erase whatever credibility I have – I have never lied about a trip, simply because I have never had the need to. I’ve always been lucky enough to get to my destination, whenever and however I wanted. However, don’t let my honesty get in the way of your devious plan of creating the perfect 2009 liecation.

Picking the right fake destination

As I mentioned earlier – play it safe. Pick a destination with plenty of support for your lie. If you are telling a lie about being just one of 100 tourists a year visiting a remote island, you’ll need a pretty damn good cover story to keep that one going. Europe and North America are simple ones.

If you suck at lying, then you may want to “take a cruise”. Pick a nice 7 day round trip cruise with little or no stops on the way. Virtually every cruise is the same, and if you mention “food and shows”, you’ll have covered almost everything you could have done on your liecation.

Physical evidence of your trip plans

Keep at least one or two suitcases in the hallway after you “return”, leave a guidebook on the table, and if at all possible, find an old ticket wallet as evidence of “your tickets”. Really smart fakers will find a way to print a fake online boarding pass, but since the TSA frowns on that, you are on your own.

Go to Google maps and print maps of everything you “plan to visit”, then leave them lying around the house.

Photos and how they help you lie

Finding or creating photos of a trip that never took place can be tricky. You can pick photos other people made (off Flickr or other sites), but showing your friends 100 pictures without you in it will set off alarm bells. Stick to the basics – photos of food, photos of buildings.

Just remember to keep the weather in mind. Was the weather horrible during the week “you were there”? Then don’t show photos of a nice sunny trip. If you do want to use photos, pick some from deep in the search results – using the first 5 results for “Paris” will get you caught.

If you put the photos on your PC – rename them, you don’t want people catching you because they found the same file name from others. Don’t upload photos as your own to the Internet – that is stealing, and the move from liar to thief is one you really need to stay away from.

Pick an “I can’t talk about it” destination

If you want to make your life easier, pick a destination with activities you “can’t talk about”. A great liecation for this could be the Hedonism resort or one of the Mexican beach destinations. Any time someone asks what you did, just give them a glazed look, close your eyes and tell them “too much, just too much”.

Details are your enemy

Specific details of your trip will either kill your lie, or keep it going. Did you “visit” a museum? Check online to be sure it was actually open. Don’t give a 20 minute lecture on the museum you “visited” unless you know your stuff really well.

The Internet is a quick and easy place to find support for your lies. A quick trip to and Wikipedia will get you up to date on almost everything you need to know to create your liecation.

Eat lots and lots of unhealthy food

If you went on an all-inclusive vacation or a cruise, you’ll have a hard time convincing people you really left the country if you come back looking skinny.

Before you start your week long liecation at home, stock up on lots and lots of bad food. A pint a day of your best friends Ben and Jerry will be a good start.

Let this also be a reminder to do groceries before you start your trip. Running into friends at the local store when you are supposed to be in Hawaii is a real deal breaker.

Saying “hi’ from your “destination”

Technology is on your side here – it isn’t hard to send out greetings, tweets and emails from around the world, without actually leaving your liecation headquarters. Want people to think you are in France? Find yourself a French webmail service, sign up, and send emails to your friends. You’ll need to be able to read or translate the site in order to sign up, but before you know it, you’ll be emailing people from your bigfatliar@ French webmail account.

Remember to stay away from any social networking services when there is a time difference. Your whole story will be busted if you are Twittering from “Sydney” at 3am “local time”. If you do screw up – lie some more, and say you just left the bar.

Got some REALLY nerdy friends you may need to deceive? Find a nice foreign proxy server and send your mail through that, or use a web mail service that doesn’t reveal your location.

Souvenirs say it all

You really don’t need tacky crap for your friends, but family members may be expecting something special from your destination. Thankfully, sites like Ebay are full of people who were given tacky crap, and put it up for sale.

For about $9, you can order an ugly Eiffel Tower key chain and $20 will get your some clogs or a piece of Delft Blauw porcelain to remind people of your lovely “trip to Holland”.

Relics from your trip to other countries could be as simple as some stickers or junk from an antique store.

Funny anecdotes

Remember the guy at the place, doing the thing? That was awesome! Create a couple of fun an
ecdotes, so you can think back to all the fantastic memories of the trip you never took.

Keep your stories straight

Did you “visit” your vacation destination with a friend, family member or partner? Get your stories straight. It starts with silly details like the hotel, what you did and things you saw. Don’t try and synchronize 100’s of false details, you’ll only increase the chance someone calls you out for being the fraud you are.

If you have to describe your vacation to someone with the knowledge to uncover your dark truth, you may have to resort to the “explosive diarrhea” excuse – once you start talking about that horrible case of the exploding runs, most people won’t dig any further into your trip report.

The cheapest way to vacation – the liecation

We’ve already been bombarded with “staycation” stories by the media, and our very own Brenda coined the phrase “yaycation“. But the newest vacation term may be one of the lamest yet.

According to European trendwatcher Adjiedj Bakas, an increasing number of people are planning their very own liecation (my term, not his).

It works like this – instead of booking a trip to somewhere nice, or even just staying home for some fun, these people are actually putting together a bunch of lies and pretending they went on vacation.

The story mentions that these people actually stay indoors all week, create fake vacation photos and even use a tanning bed to add a bit of color to back up their story.

So, next time one of your friends tells stories of an amazing vacation that sounds just a tad too good to be true, start trying to poke holes in their trip report – it could be your first encounter with a liecation!