You can spot these people from a mile away, what with their brightly coloured shirts, lanyards, clipboards, and general lack of a soul. This advanced warning is usually quite helpful, as it gives you a chance to cross the street. Some days, what should be a simple 10 minute walk in a straight line can end up taking three times as long and involve a few small trips down some slightly suspicious back alleys.
Sadly, on some occasions, there just isn’t a safe place to cross. This leaves you with no choice but to walk past, and have an awkward encounter with these people. There are a few tactics for dealing with this:
- Attempt to catch up to and walk behind someone who looks like they have more money than you (eg. a man in a suit, a lady with nice shoes, the queen).
- Pretend you’re talking to someone on your phone, and pray to the god/higher power of your choice that it doesn’t ring while you’re doing so.
- Pretend you don’t speak English
- Pretend you’re deaf
- Pretend to be an asshole who’s too busy to stop
- Actually be an asshole who’s too busy to stop
The other time you will become stuck listening to their spiel is when they’ve decided to set up their shady operation at the traffic lights. A dirty, dirty tactic used by dirty, dirty people. While you’re waiting to cross the street, there’s no escape, as these people have never learned life’s golden rule: no means no. You begin to wonder if you should just cross the street anyway. Would getting hit by a truck be more, or less painful than what you’re currently experiencing?
Here's the deal, and it's non negotiable: I’ll give money to the homeless when they promise to stop freaking me out at the train station.