We’ve all been there.
Picture any one of the following scenarios:
- You nick someone in the first hour of your shift who’s punched a window through with their bare hand. They have to go to hospital. There’s no-one else available.
- You come in on an afternoon shift to find there’s been a stabbing and that there are six different scenes. You’re the only one on shift who doesn’t have something booked in.
- There’s a female kicking off in custody and she needs to be on a constant. You look down and realise that you’re the only female on shift.
The list is far from exhaustible. There are hundreds of other scenarios that will result in you sat on your arse for hours – listening to everyone else doing the “fun stuff” on the radio. (That is, until you get old and wise enough to turn it to “transmit inhibit” whilst in hospital.)
So, what can you do to pass the time?
Well, here’s a list that we’ve crafted of no less than fifty ways to possibly amuse yourself whilst abstracted from the joys of front-line policing.
1) Netflix binge – an oldie but a good shout nonetheless. Many hospitals these days have free public wifi available – and even if they don’t, unlimited data allowances on phone contracts aren’t exactly rare. Still, you can even download episodes of your favourite shows now when you’re at home on wifi – so there’s no excuse to be caught short!
2) eBay – there’s never a bad time to go on eBay and buy crap you don’t need – especially when it’s crap that other people are selling. However, you could also use your time wisely and sell those golf clubs you never got around to using – or that pair of heels that you just had to have – but then when you got them home… like, ew.
3) Visit Unroll.me and let it organise your email inbox by unsubscribing you from all those emails you never ever read/want to receive. (Hint: It only works if you say you’re outside the E.U. due to GDPR. Obviously, we wouldn’t tell you to lie. We’ll just let you work it out.)
4) If you haven’t already, download the Bitmoji app. Make your personalised emoji, and then send all your friends fun (but pointless) cartoon texts. You can also use it to send us crap on our Snapchat Channel!
5) Discover what the different uniforms in a hospital ward mean. How many times have you sat there and wondered what all the different colours are for?
6) Order food from Deliveroo, JustEat, UberEats or Dominos. Granted, this one isn’t really for when you’re sat in A&E – or tucked away on a ward – but are you stuck on a scene guard somewhere – out of sight, out of mind, with no hope of relief and utterly starving? Bet some of you have never even considered it. There’s also an argument to be had that in those circumstances you should be able to claim the cost of a meal – something in Police Regs about being “unable to take a meal in the usual fashion”. But, you can come back to that in point 17 below.
8) Make a plan for the forthcoming Zombie Apocalypse. We posted here about a UK-based firm who are selling Zombie Fortification Cabins – so you can’t say we haven’t got you covered. Granted, they’re a bit on the expensive side – but there’s absolutely nothing wrong with having a WhatsApp Group Chat – just in case… All you have to do is pick a team, decide who’s bringing what and where you’re going to meet up. The rest will work itself out. Probably.
9) Learn how to tie a bow tie. Impress the your peers with your skills the next time you go to a wedding.
10) Rediscover Groupon and all the random things it has to offer! Just a quick glance today shows a Ford Bullitt Mustang Driving Experience at Drift Limits, you can obtain a Certificate in British Sign Language, or you can even Name a Star after your dearly beloved!
12) Make a List – any list will do! Perhaps a list of all the actions on your workload that you really need to get done before Rest Days, or a list of things you need to buy on the way home – or maybe even a wishlist of all the things you want from our Online Shop. (See 25 below.)
13) Improve your Instagram game – look up a photo a day challenge list online and take photos with your phone.
15) Write, write, write. Start with something easy, like a poem. Rhyming is easy and will pass the time. Come up with something genius and share it with your friends.
16) Reconnect with an old acquaintance. A real-world one. Not a “Social Media” friend. Maybe your tutor from when you joined the job? An old flame? A school friend? An old work colleague? Your childhood bestie. You never know what new doors you can open by reconnecting with someone from your past.
17) Check out the Handy Quick Guide to Police Regs that WE WENT AND PUT ON OUR BLOG SO YOU ALWAYS KNOW WHERE TO FIND IT. It’s copied word for word from Regs – you’ve just got to go and read the points.
18) Pick a Facebook friend you haven’t spoken to in months and initiate a catch-up chat. If you’re not feeling particularly chatty, cull your Facebook friends list instead and unfriend contacts who haven’t spoken to you in years. (They probably won’t notice and besides, it’ll help make your newsfeed so much better.)
19) Clean up your Facebook account – go through your old photos and status updates and delete anything incriminating or anything that makes you cringe so it doesn’t show up under the “On This Day” feature.
20) Look up your family tree – we’ve linked to a Google search to get you started – but there’s always a chance you’re related to someone famous – or your other half; if you go back far enough…!
21) Write yourself an email to receive in the future – yes, it sounds weird, but according to the testimonials, the people who have done it have had SO MUCH FUN. Mega lolz. Of course, you could also do it to a crush, or an enemy if you’re feeling particularly risqué!
22) Invite people over for a hang-out at your house. Nothing beats boredom than having other people to experience it with. Make it an impromptu party for Rest Days and throw out a WhatsApp Broadcast for complete potluck.
23) Download a dating app. Dating apps put users under a spell where they hold on to the hope that maybe the next person they stumble upon will be their soulmate, causing them to continue an endless cycle of swiping left or right. There are many dating apps to download if you are tired of Tinder, and if you want to take it a step further, you can download a hookup app to get straight to the point.
24) Learn how to lucid dream – then go home and practice it.
25) Visit our Online Shop and see the HUGE amount of things we sell – ranging from (wait for it….) hoodies to t-shirts to mugs to jackets to Under Armour Boots to patches to badges to cufflinks to books to paracord bracelets, hats, phone cases, jewellery and much, much more!
26) Order a food intolerance test kit – always wondered if you’re allergic to something – or if you have a deficiency which would explain that you’re not actually a lazy b*st*rd?
27) Clear out your WhatsApp (or any other) messages. Why? Well, picture this. You nick someone. They make a malicious complaint. Could be anything. “They nicked £20 from my wallet.” Before you know it, PSD are at your door and nicking you – because the Police have to be seen to be fair and impartial… Of course, the complaint is utter rubbish and going nowhere – but they seize your phone and download it – just because you’re a Police Officer and that seems to be common practise only when coppers are nicked these days… Also, of course – there’s absolutely nothing on there regarding the stolen money that you didn’t even nick… but… you know your mate “Tommy” from school? The one who keeps sending really inappropriate jokes to the group chat that you and twenty other people are in… Well, you see, you haven’t challenged them, and it’s now a problem. Even worse, if you’ve engaged, laughed, joined in or told them yourself. Don’t get us wrong – Coppers with racist or homophobic etc attitudes don’t belong in the job. However, perception is also a dangerous thing – and you can quite easily lose your job based on the actions of someone else. Here’s a story along similar lines…
28) Value your house and see what it’s worth. Snoop on the people near you who have recently sold and see if you can afford to upgrade – or get the hell out of Dodge!
29) Make a visit to uSwitch.com and see if you can save money on your household bills. Simply sign up and give them some details about your current deals – and if they can beat them – they’ll switch you over and save you a ton of money EVERY MONTH!
30) Learn some magic – after all, who ISN’T impressed by a well-executed card trick? If you don’t believe us, just have a quick look at Jennifer Lawrence’s face at the climax of this excellent repertoire by Chris Pratt!
31) Set up a Lottery Syndicate – and DON’T be one of those people that hits it rich and doesn’t give up their job. Get out of there as fast as your little legs can carry you! (Also, remember us if you win as a result of this advice.)
32) Yes, it’s time for the best thing on this list. Why not Volunteer at a Dog’s Home? Is there going to be anything more rewarding in life? Probably not…
33) Check out how much crime has taken place where you live. After all, if you’re sat on your arse right now – the Bobbies who are meant to be looking after your gaff are probably doing the same! Reveal all with a simple postcode search. Beware: it might want to make you stay home.
34) Drink a full glass of water. Dehydration can make you sluggish. If you’re tired and bored, pour a glass (think: cheap styrofoam cup) of water and drink it.
35) Update your personal finances. Check if your savings account ever got into three figures and check where you can cut back and save more?
36) Practice some Kegel Exercises. You can do these whilst sitting down whether you’re a male or a female and there are numerous benefits to doing so. The only slight problem is, if you can’t find them – the guidance is to stick a finger somewhere and probe around. We really don’t suggest doing this on work time. It’ll end up with papers being served. As for clenching discreetly whilst sitting there – go nuts!
37) Search for a new job. Not just any job of course. Here’s a great forum for British Expats which discusses Police Jobs around the world. Fancy taking up a role in St Lucia, Gibraltar or the Cayman Islands? Why not have a look?
38) Make a bucket list.Things to do by the time you’re 30, 40 or 50? Things to do before you retire? There’s no better way to pass time than to spend it making a list of the things you REALLY want to achieve in life.
39) Design and look into getting a tattoo.Or add another to your collection. Especially seeing as many forces are now relaxing or getting rid of their tattoo policy.
40) Guarding a scene? In a field? Middle of nowhere? No-one around? Freezing cold? Why not use the time wisely and work your way through a Superhero Workout – tons to pick from and it’ll certainly get your blood pumping!
41) Download PUBG on your mobile and get totally addicted – like we are with the Xbox version… Then, depending on HOW addicted you are – you could go and purchase the EPIC hoodies we’ve made for you and your squad. 😉
If you’re on an Android device you can go here to download the game.
If you’re on an iOS device you can go here to download the game.
42) Random Acts of Kindness. We love this and it’s something we’ve pushed before – usually when it gets hot with our #BuyACopACan hashtag. Hot day? See a copper sweating their tits off? Surprise them with a can of Lilt. (The BEST thirst quencher and if you don’t like it you’re weird.) Hell, even a cold bottle of water can be the nicest thing in the world. But, why not go further? Commit to one random act of kindness EVERY DAY in your life. Make someone smile. It’s an amazing feeling.
43) Clear out your property. Yes, the absolute shit-load of exhibits you have stored SOMEWHERE against your name from that burglary in 2007. If that piece of brick hasn’t come in handy by now, there’s a fairly good chance you can dispose of it legitimately. Same goes with your locker. Clear it out. Old kit? Get rid of it. And no, don’t just throw it on the pile of other shitty uniform from the 1980’s to the present day that’s festering in the corner of the locker room. Send it back to stores. Lazy sod.
44) Set up a folder on your email called E-PDR. As time goes by, save examples of your good work in it so you can reference them later. Or, if you do something particularly well, email yourself and drag it to the folder. That way, when you’re informed that they should’ve been completed a week ago (same every year) – you have some material from the past 12 months to reference!
45) Send your enemy (although, not obligatory) a Glitter Bomb in the post. Glitter is a right bastard – so when it comes out of a cannon at you – you can imagine what the fall out will be like. For your victim. We obviously wouldn’t suggest this for anyone to open on briefing. In front of the team. Oh no. That would be
46) Check out what the latest and upcoming films are – and then make plans to go and see them in all of their glory. At the time of writing, we’re geeking out over Captain Marvel and then…. the final part of Avengers. *insert sad face here*
47) Put together an Operational Order for your team. If you can string together a semi-decent presentation – you can ask for resources and a budget and potentially run it on Rest Days as paid overtime. It’s not difficult to find issues to address: knife crime, burglaries, pro-active drug stops – the list goes on. If you’re young in service, don’t be daunted. Show willing and ask around until someone can send you a copy of one they’ve made – then use it as a template. There’s nothing better than running your own operation and making it a success.
48) Completely Lock Down Your Facebook Account. This one should be obvious – but for many of you it’s not. Essentially, when someone who ISN’T your friend on Facebook clicks on you profile – they should see you cove photo, you profile pic and your name. NOTHING else. No photos. No locations. No check-ins. No personal info. They shouldn’t be able to see the shitty pages you liked in 2007. Easiest way to check is to unfriend someone and ask them to check it over. There IS a way to view your profile as a visitor – but that’s beyond explaining to some of you. 😛
49) If nothing else, why not learn and practice some Breathing Techniques that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety? Also, particularly handy if you come across someone else having a panic attack and you want to calm them down without saying “Just calm down!” because, as we all know, never in the history of saying “calm down” has anyone EVER, actually, calmed down.
50) Read an article about 50 Epic Things to Do When You’re Bored.
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