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Old 05-23-2019, 02:35 AM
guizot is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: An East Hollywood dingbat
Posts: 8,805
I used to go in disguise as a kind of art or pastime. In fact, I went to my high school graduation in disguise, as a "member of the community" -- a beach bum type, with long hair (wig), short mustache, sunglasses. (I made the mustache with this technique.) Only one person recognized me, but I'd let him know beforehand that I would be there in disguise. I sat next to my math teacher in the general public seating, and made a few wise-ass comments during the ceremony, in a deepened voice. Then, at the end, I said, "Yeah--I coulda been in there, too, but what the hell. You had a great class, Ms. ____________)," in my normal voice, she looked at me, and just started cracking up.

On another instance, I went to a cafe where I knew some friends would be, disguised as a "foreign scholar" type, and sat a table next to and directly facing them, hearing everything they said. They never recognized me. However, some of the same friends did recognize me once going by in the same disguise later, and they said (after thinking about it for a while ), that it was because they recognized how I walked.

So that was a big lesson for me in disguises -- it's not just how you look, but your mannerism, too, that can give you away.

Also, it has everything to do with context. If you're in disguise but in a context in which people never see you, they are much less likely to recognize. I lot of the ways in which we recognize people and objects is by way of the total context in which we have always known them. (ETA: IOW, kind of what DorkVader said about being out of uniform off base.)

Last edited by guizot; 05-23-2019 at 02:38 AM.