Why did I come in like this? I should have phoned in sick. Why did I go out on a Wednesday night? Eurrrgh.

AlcoSaber screening breathalyzer

Getting into work was just fine but Barry from HR just announced random alcohol checks using their fancy new breathalyser. Caught a look – it’s like a yellow wand – actually, it looks like it could be a lightsaber.

Right, focus! I don’t have much time. Barry said this device can test someone every six seconds, and there are about 20 people in between him and me… maths is too hard while I’m in this state… but I’m going to get caught! I only have, what, about 2 minutes? How do I get the alcohol out of me as quickly as possible? Or at least mask it so I can trick the breathalyser?

Think, think! What is the opposite of alcohol? You know how if you pour acid on an alkaline burn, it will neutralise it….

Wait no! I’ve wasted too much time – they are only 15 people away from me! Damn that machine, it tests so fast. And wait, what is he ticking? They have a list! Oh, I bet it’s a list of everyone in today! Wait. So they aren’t just testing some people? They are testing everyone! How much time does that take? Flipping heck! Damn that handsome trainer at AlcoDigital who convinced them to take the demon stick from hell.

Even if I hide in the bathroom they will still know I haven’t been tested! I wish I hadn’t drunk so much last night. I actually feel awful. I don’t know if it’s the nerves or the hangover that’s making me feel this way.

Ok – I’ll nip to the bathroom. I need to at least buy myself some time. Maybe I should brush my teeth? That will trick it! Ah – but I don’t have a toothbrush. What if I just do it with my fingers? I mean that’s got to be something. Wait, the breathalyser doesn’t measure your teeth… but my breath does stink! Oh! I know, I’ll use mouthwash! When that breathalyser finds the alcohol in my breath, I can just pull it out and then they will go onto the next person.

I’m such a genius. Ok, so they have gone past my workstation and onto the next one, I think they’re going round the whole place. I was number 20 in the line and there are about 50 people here. So I’ve bought myself about 3 minutes. Why is that device so fast? This is pathetic. Their old breathalyser would take about 2 minutes per person.

Ok. Where can I get mouthwash? What if I just gargle some hand sanitiser? No, what does that accomplish? That just sounds gross. Why don’t I just say it was mouthwash. I have been here for a few years now they will believe me. Yeah. Just say it confidently.

Sorry guys I just brushed my teeth. What if they ask where the mouthwash is. They won’t. I just need to be confident. Sorry guys, I JUST brushed my TEETH. And then I will show them my pearly whites. Actually, they are not that white. Wait why do my gums feel so bad. Are my teeth wobbly? No no.

Damn no. I need to practice.

“Sorry guys, I just brushed my teeth.” Oh! that was good and confident. I could be an actor.

Oh no, they’re about to test Danny – he was out last night! Oh man, he’s just blown into it. Why didn’t you run Donny?

No light…

No light…

This is the longest 4 seconds of my life…


Ah Danny, what are they going to do now? Is he saying something about mouthwash? No, Danny, that was my idea.

Are they taking him into the back office? What are they going to do there? Mouthwash is a great excuse! Ok, so does this mean I have more time?

What!? No! One of the managers took Danny to the back office and the other is still using the yellow wand.

He is almost done. He is looking at the list; probably looking for my name. What am I going to do? They can’t fire Danny over some mouthwash. Why wouldn’t they believe that? They have no proof it wasn’t. I wonder what they’re asking him. Probably trying to get him to admit to being drunk. That that wand doesn’t look like it would hold up in court – it doesn’t even have mouthpieces. I’m fine. I will just argue that it’s not accurate enough.  All the police ones have mouthpieces.

He is coming over to me. He sees me. Should I hold my breath? What if I blow all the air out my lungs? Can I use the industrial sized hoover to suck out the air? This is so stupid! Oh no, oh no, oh no – he’s almost here!

“Hi, blow into here, please. Just a standard check.”

Ok, take a deep breath and blow… but blow away from it.

“Sorry, you missed, can you blow directly into it?”

Ok, this time blow a tiny bit, then suck.

“Eh? What are you doing? You need to blow directly into it”

Why isn’t this working? I need to think. Think! Think!!!

“If you don’t do it this time, I’ll have to do an evidential test on you instead.”

“Ok, sorry. You see, I just brushed my teeth.”

“Oh, did you? Well let’s just skip this test then and go straight to the evidential one.”


Oh no! Why me? I mean it’s my own fault for going out last night. But really, why me? Why did they buy that thing? Why now?

“Hi, Danny.”


Oh, he looks sad, what is going on?