Close Encounters

Posted on May 2, 2012


People with dogs go outside a lot. After all, when a dog’s gotta go, a dog’s gotta go, and that means their owner’s gotta go with them. I know this isn’t exactly revolutionary, but it became an important fact to keep in mind after dating this guy Dave. You remember him: the one who was far too close to his dog. (If not, please click here to read the story of Dave before continuing. I promise it will make this entry much more amusing.) Where was I? Oh yes, people with dogs go outside a lot, and people with dogs who live in my neighborhood go outside a lot in my neighborhood. What in the world am I getting at? Basically, after our disaster date, I have run into Dave three times on the street. However, I have not spoken to Dave any of those times. How did I master this seemingly impossible feat? Read on for my genius tactics of avoidance.

1. I was on the phone with my mom, just blocks from my apartment. I spotted Benny (the dog) first. After all, I don’t easily forget the face of a dog who I’ve swapped spit with. When I realized who must be on the other end of that leash, I went into survival mode.

Tactic: The Turn Around.

Method: I just turned around. I also flipped my hair to cover my face and lowered my voice an octave as I continued talking on the phone. While my mom was slightly confused by my sudden change in pitch, Dave was none the wiser and walked right past me. Benny, however, stared directly at me, and the look in his beady little eyes said that he remembered.

2. The second encounter was only a few days later. I was on my block, walking and texting at the same time (rookie mistake), when I looked up to see that Dave (and Benny of course) were only feet in front of me, heading in my direction. Dave was holding a pizza box from what must have been the place below my building. The strange part: There are several other, much better, pizza places close to his apartment. This is when I began to suspect that something fishy was going on.

Tactic: The Confused Staredown.

Method: I made eye contact, kept walking and gave him a look that said, “Hmm do I know you?” He looked right back. We passed each other. Not a word was spoken. Success!

3. The final Dave spotting happened as I was walking home with my roommate late one night. Again, I spotted Benny first. Again, that dog was staring right at me. Dave was sitting on the stoop of a building (that he did not live in), gazing lovingly at his pooch.

Tactic: Too Distracted to Care.

Method: I became so fully invested in my conversation with my roommate that even if he’d called out to me (which, thank God, he didn’t), I would be too focused to notice.

When I got home that night, I searched my purse for the GPS device he must have planted on me. I still haven’t found it. I know what you’re thinking: I should have just politely waved and said hello. After all, we’re both adults, and we can handle it. If that is what you think, maybe you need to read the story of our date again. Yeah, not gonna happen.

—Raz, 25, NYC

Posted in: My Stories