The main reason that prowlers get caught is because they get sloppy with their alibis. We tend to be very careful in the beginning and then, if we have succeeded at not being caught, we get cocky and start to cut corners and that's when the disasters happen.
A good alibi needs to be simple, believable, and verifiable.
It should be simple because the likelihood of being caught goes up exponentially with each degree of complexity. Simple means that it doesn't involve more than one other person ("Oh, I was at Dave's house with all the guys from the bowling team." "Really? I talked with Marcia tonight and Steve and Joe were at her house." Oops.), it's easy to remember ("What was the name of that new restaurant you said you went to with Joe the other night? What do you mean you don't remember? Do you still have the receipt?"), and it doesn't involve multiple steps ("I was at the book store, then I went to the gun store, then took the car for an oil change, and...and...and...."). The more complicated it gets, the more chances you have to screw it up.
Of course, everyone knows it needs to be believable. In fact, that's what we spend most of our time on. It needs to be something that you either normally do already or that your spouse would think is reasonable for you. If you never go anywhere, it's time for you to get a life. Not only will this help you become a much more interesting person, but it will help establish an alibi should you need one in the future. If you regularly volunteer at your local homeless shelter (or animal shelter or whatever), it will be pretty easy to peel away a few hours from that activity to use for some playtime. For godsake, don't use going to the library as an alibi if you don't have a library card, and if you hate museums, don't use going to an art museum as an alibi. Use some common sense, will ya?
It also needs to be verifiable. This is the one that catches many of us and, yes, this is the one that caught me. I had planned for my time one day a couple of years ago so I could spend a nice 6-8 hours with JJ. I picked a business trip as an alibi, a client that I had been seeing fairly regularly recently and that was located 3 hours away. The round trip would be 6 hours of driving, plus two hours of meeting time while I was there. There it is. 8 hours. What I didn't plan on was that Hubby would be tracking my mileage. If I had actually gone where I said I was going, I would have logged about 350-380 miles on the car. Instead, I logged 60 miles. I had some 'splainin' to do.
You should have seen his face. He had that, "Gotcha!" look and he was acting victorious until he realized what every newly awakened cuckolded spouse eventually asks. What now? Yeah, he caught me, but what was he going to do then? Anyway, that's another story. (For those who don't know, I didn't try to wiggle out of it. I fessed up.)
The point of this part of the story is that I truly came to appreciate how important it is that an alibi be verifiable. Now when I establish an alibi, I know how many miles I'd log round trip if I actually went there and I make sure that my rendezvous location will be within a few miles of that distance.
If you suspect that your spouse may be tracking your whereabouts via GPS (or if you just want to be extra careful), pick a meeting location that is near your alibi spot, and park at the alibi spot. If you're being tracked through your phone, consider leaving your phone in the car, where you're supposed to be, if you can. If you can't, get a room that is closest to your alibi location.
Also, for an alibi to be truly verifiable, if you say you're going to be with a friend, that friend should know that he/she is an alibi and should be willing to vouch for you. That doesn't necessarily mean that the friend has to know your prowling. For example, I have a good friend who knows I spend most of my time locked in the tower (my home), under Hubby's careful watch. She knows I rarely get out these days and that makes me crazy. So, from time to time, I can call her and say, "Hi Suzy. I've got cabin fever and I'm dying to do some shopping. Can I tell Hubby I'm having lunch with you?" She says yes, happy to be helping a friend, and we agree on where we went shopping and that we didn't buy anything. You may ask why I just didn't ask Hubby if I could go shopping (or tell him I was going shopping, depending on how liberated you are), but that won't work for me because Hubby needs to be able to verify my story, which he can do if I'm with a friend. If I'm going out alone, Hubby hears that as "fucking around" and more deadbolts are added to the tower doors.
There were a couple of times a while back when I said I was going to Cara's house for lunch or a BBQ. To help verify that, Cara texted me a few photos of the BBQ, herself, the food, and I saved them to my phone and texted them to Hubby. Then Cara texted him a picture of herself at the BBQ with a little message, "Wish you could have joined us!" Hubby was happy. Heck, what man wouldn't be happy to get a text and a photo from Cara? :-)
If you use a friend as an alibi, and that friend doesn't know it, you're rolling the dice. What if your spouse runs into him/her at the gym or the grocery store or the park or wherever when he/she is supposed to be with you? What if your spouse asks him/her about your outing a week or two from now and that person just looks back at him confused?
Finally, don't sabotage your own alibi. If you said you were going to share a meal with a friend, don't come home ravenously hungry. Dress appropriately for wherever you are supposed to be. If it's a work appointment, don't wear your jeans (unless that's what you wear for work appointments). You also need to talk about your alibi without looking or sounding nervous. Talking about it needs to come easy to you. If it doesn't, re-think it.
If you feel like this alibi business feels slimy and scummy, that's because it is. Lying to Hubby is the worst part about prowling, by far. I've even cancelled a couple of play dates because I just couldn't lie to him on those days. There was no particular reason except I just couldn't do it. As most of you know, my preference would be to be completely honest and upfront about the whole thing. Unfortunately, that's not what Hubby wants.
Do you have a favorite alibi? Is it simple, believable, and verifiable? Have you ever been caught because you used a bad alibi?