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You're walking down the street minding your own business when you spot that guy from the gym who always talks forever. Ugh. There has to be a way to avoid him without being rude, but no one believes that tired cell phone routine anymore. Here's what to do:
1 When you first see him, don't flinch or look away. As with bear attacks, sudden movements are always a bad idea. Look straight ahead and try to seem relaxed.
2 Isn't it crazy how far you can see? Count how many people or streets there are, or imagine you're driving a train. The important thing is to maintain a sense of vague interest in something else.
3 When you think he's getting close (don't look!), pretend you forgot something. You can slap your forehead and maybe pat down your pockets. Don't break stride, though.
4 With any luck, you're now past him and home free. If not, stare at the ground in feigned disappointment until you're sure it's safe to look up again.