An idiom that means to make up stories or excuses, especially those that are not true, and are just false excuses you give when you try to justify/save yourself.

Maybe similar to feeding crap/bullsh**


Not an idiom, "pretext" seems to fit

A reason or excuse given to hide the real reason for something, a fictitious reason given in order to conceal the real one. TFD

It was a pretext for not joining us.

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  • Op asks for an idiom, although after seeing your answer one should change their mind. – vickyace May 14 '16 at 0:52

This answer is from the point of view of the person to whom the excuse is given: fairy tale

John told me another fairy tale about why he can't finish repairing the car until next week.

fairy tale from Oxford Dictionaries

A fabricated story, especially one intended to deceive

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An idiomatic expression is to tell a cock-and-bull story :

  • a story or explanation which is obviously not true.

    • She told me some cock-and-bull story about her car breaking down.

(Cambridge Idioms Dictionary,)

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Here are a few:

fob someone off [with some excuse]

brush someone off [with some excuse]

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Although not explicitly stated anywhere, spin a yarn has some connotations of very slight deception, in that someone spinning a yarn wants the listener to believe what they have to convey.

To tell or create a story, especially one which is far-fetched.

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You could refer to this as a song and dance:

a long and often familiar statement or explanation that is usually not true or pertinent


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  • Normally song and dance is used as a metaphor for giving too much publicity to something. I wouldn't make a song and dance about how much money you won, otherwise you will have the world descending on you for a hand-out. – WS2 Sep 16 '16 at 21:37

I'd use "fibbing" here.

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) [wn]:

fib n 1: a trivial lie; "he told a fib about eating his spinach"; "how can I stop my child from telling stories?" [syn: {fib}, {story}, {tale}, {tarradiddle}, {taradiddle}] v 1: tell a relatively insignificant lie; "Fibbing is not acceptable, even if you don't call it lying"

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  • We don't know if the OP was referring to a trivial lie - a fib - or a lie. – frank May 14 '16 at 9:53

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