Staring’s fun until you get caught. It’s a great way to pass the time, to take your mind off the task at hand, and to pose the age-old question: “Hey, if given the chance, would I?” Sometimes you get so caught up in a debate with yourself that you forget that the victim who your eyes are violating has the ability to sense when someone is fixated on her (how can everyone sense that?). This is when you’re fucked no matter what you do, so you deploy damage control. You can pretend that you were looking at something directly behind her (the wall’s not that interesting), you can quickly look away (she obviously saw you when you made eye contact), or you can hide under the table (turn a moderately creepy move into a full-fledged predator move). I’ve been working on a move for a few years now, one that I’m sure some of you have tried as well. It’s not perfected, but it’s getting there. When I realize I’m caught and the classic “Oh shit” thought pops into my head (what a shitty moment that always is), I don’t panic. I don’t try to deny the fact that I was staring, because I was. We both know it. What I do, instead, is keep looking. I keep looking and act dazed. The recipient of my glance keeps looking over, either out of the corner of her eye or straight-on, until it is obvious that something is not right. This is when I do a quick shake of the head, as if I was day-dreaming and now am snapping out of it. Creepy? you bet. Does it work? It’s a rare success, but what other tactic works in this situation?