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Tip of the Day 11/24:Muggle Distractions —The Power of Invisibility

Occasionally you’ll run into the awkward situation of noticing bystanders staring at you while you’re geocaching with expressions that range from puzzled to hostile You really can’t blame them:Why would an otherwise grown-up man or woman spend 10 minutes poking around under rocks in an urban park in the middle of the day or wriggling around on the sidewalk under a newspaper box?

Muggles will stop and look at you while you’re peering into dark places and rustling in the bushes,but few will bother to ask for an explanation. However,some will ask. It’s nice to answer. When they’re wearing blue uniforms,it’s downright essential.

In general,the best approach is to tell people what you’re actually doing —“We are engaged in a treasure hunt using global positioning systems”—or the terser option —“We are participating in an Internet treasure hunt.”Most Muggles will be sufficiently baffled by this response and will move on. For the few that express interest in learning more,show them your GPSr and explain to them how you’re trying to pinpoint the treasure. You can even invite them to join in the hunt.

If you don’t want to explain, however,we’ve learned of some clever ways to distract Muggles. We’d like to share some with you in the next few weeks.

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Peasinapod has invested in a bright orange reflective vest that gives him an aura of responsibility when out geocaching. “If you’re wearing an orange safety vest and carrying a clipboard,you can do practically anything you want,”he says. We love this idea! It’s like an invisibility cloak for Muggles. People wearing rightly colored vests and hard hats become almost transparent to the general public and can do unusual things without attracting attention. Several geocachers have told us they’ve tried this approach in busy public areas.

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Got your own tip for distracting Muggles? Comment on this post to share!

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