I’m Augusta. Generally I'm a friendly person, but living in New York for seven years has made me completely averse to eye contact — and basically all human contact — with strangers.
It's not about being rude. It's about feeling completely awkward and uncomfortable with the idea of connecting with strangers past a cursory smile.
On my normal subway commute, I do the headphones-reading combination to send the right message. But I wanted to see if something more dramatic would be better.
So I looked to the real pro: Grammy Award-winning singer Sia, who has completely mastered the art of avoiding eye contact in public.
She uses giant hats and wigs as a way of keeping her anonymity while in public, and I saw this strategy as an opportunity.
I’m not famous, but I do love the idea of not having to look at anyone in public — and getting a free pass for avoiding them by the sheer fact that it would be IMPOSSIBLE to make eye contact. So I got to work.
Like any sensible person would, I bought a wig.
I tucked my hair into a tight AF wig cap and put on the wig, which was essentially a very fancy blindfold because of the bangs.
Sia doesn't ride solo in public, so I asked my very large and very handsome friend Zach to be my bodyguard for the day.
Location 1: Home Depot. Because Sia loves a good chandelier.
The first person to come over was a salesperson who asked if we needed any help picking out a lighting fixture.
I worked in retail for years and understand that salespeople are there to help, but I still get nervous hives when anyone who works in a store talks to me.