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Good excuse

I was told this story by a bridge teacher, and I’d like to share it here.

(North London, circa 1990s)

The teacher was overseeing a supervised practice game, players were Year 1 students. Declarer was in 3NT, and the opening leader led the normal card, showing an honour and length. The obvious defence was for the player in third seat to play her ace, and return the suit. She did play her ace, then she went into a long trance. After a while the teacher encouraged her to return the suit, which she did. At the end of the hand he was curious about why she had thought for so long. So he asked her: “just out of interest, what were you thinking of?”.She replied “on the way to the class I walked past Harrods, there’s a nice pair of shoes in the window and I was trying to decide whether I should go back and buy them”.

What’s the best excuse you’ve heard for this type of situation?

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