People are often surprised to hear that as a tall, bearded, somewhat intimidatingly-looking guy, I am just afraid as everyone else of getting mugged in a city. But I am. Not afraid to admit it. Maybe because my height and my one ab cannot stop, oh I don’t know, a bullet or a pointy knife. But when I walk around cities alone, since my days of Freshman year jaunts through sketchy streets to get to my Philly Improv Theatre classes, I’ve adopted a certain behavior as a means of self-preservation, almost certainly guaranteeing that no one will mess with me. This is my protocol, and I suggest you should follow it as well:
- Wear a flamboyantly colored hoodie with the hood up. Nothing is more terrifying than a 6'5" man, or anyone for that matter, in a pink pull over hoodie with the hood up. All a person can think is, oh my God, I can’t see his eyes behind that ridiculous monstrosity of a clothing garment.
- Put your earbuds in under the hoodie (so no one can see you’re listening to music), and sing, at full volume, whatever song it is you’re listening to.
- Don’t really sing as much as monotonously troll off the lyrics of the song at a sub-bass register, except when the song has a high note, at which times attempt to hit that note with falsetto. Full volume, people.
- Bands that this is particularly menacing for are Arcade Fire, Modest Mouse, and Coldplay. (Imagine a person in a pink hoodie saying out loud to herself “I want to fix you” as monotonously as possible. Who is going to mug that woman? She could have a baby bear in that hoodie, how would you know?)
- Every once in a while, as you’re walking, do a twirl.
Obviously, the only way to ensure safety against insane people is to prove that you are more insane, which scares the crap out of them. I have never been mugged people, so obviously these measures are justified. This message is brought to you by my lonely walk home from drinks with my friend Mark, and day 14 of funemployment, otherwise know as LA: Day 14.