Spencer Platt/Getty Images News/Getty Images
By Drew Villano

Looking inconspicuous is important to criminals small and large — whether you’re lugging pounds of meth-laced exotic animals from borough to borough, or trying to drink and smoke in public. So here are some ways to make sure you don’t get caught and beaten by 10 cops until your skull caves in.

Blending In

High school is over; you are no longer unique. The best criminals know how to blend in with a crowd. No one suspects them because everyone is totally convinced that the sweaty, punk-looking activist dude is to blame, while the real culprit is standing amongst the accusers, looking and acting just like they are, completely free of suspicion.

Carrying Illegal Things


Carry a messenger bag, backpack, or tote. Police on the subway can only search your bag, not your person.

Wear loud clothing, super baggy pants, crazy colored sneakers, a dumb hat, high-end bike gear, or anything else that is sure to get you noticed. That’s right: Pricey biking outfits make you a target, too. How do you think all those weed delivery services operate so quickly and quietly? The jig is up.


Dress quietly. Be nondescript. Blend in with the hardworking people of America, or at least NYC.

Carry a container, like an empty coffee cup, soda can, or other inconspicuous-looking receptacle for carrying whatever you’re not supposed to have.

Look friendly. The friendlier you look, the less suspicious you are. Just don’t be creepy about it. Don’t leer at anyone. Be polite and amicable. Look up when you walk, not at the ground. Hold the door for people behind you.

The Sound of the Beast

Do you dislike the police? No, you don’t. You love the police. You smile at them in the street. You respect them a lot. You address them as “Ma’am” and “Sir.” Even if they’re arresting your friend. Do you want to go to jail, too? When it comes to the cops, you’re can’t save anyone but yourself.

You are a patriot. You don’t just like America; you fucking love it. America, the beautiful. You have adopted that as your own personal motto.

You don’t really have to take it that far, but acting pro-American makes you less of a target. Hang an American flag out of your window or on your door for bonus points. The cops are less likely to fuck with you if you do; life is unfair, but that’s the truth.

If you have to talk to the cops, maintain eye contact and a respectful, friendly tone. There’s nothing the wolves like to prey upon more than a weak, sickly animal, so don’t make yourself a target by acting nervous, awkward, or rude. Especially rude. They really hate that. If the cops want to fuck you, you’re going to get fucked. You cannot escape that. What you can do is prepare for any situation with a positive attitude, respect, and confidence. If this demeanor doesn’t make the police more friendly toward you, it will at least prevent you from getting yourself into deeper shit than you’re already in.

Public Debauchery

As long as what you’re doing is relatively quiet, you can get away with doing a colorful spectrum of bad shit in broad daylight. There are a few reasons why doing bad things in public is more inconspicuous than desperately trying to hide from ‘prying’ eyes (that weren’t prying until you called a bunch of attention to yourself by acting weird).

No one really expects that other people have the audacity to do illegal things in public. The only people looking for illegal-doers are the cops themselves. Be aware of your surroundings; it’s obvious that you should refrain from doing those things when uniformed officers are around. But discerning a plain-clothes officer (or an unmarked police vehicle) is more difficult.

Undercover vehicles: 

Can be unmarked black cars with a few extra antennas sticking out

Can be yellow cabs with a black molding strip that runs along each side of the car (regular cabs don’t have this…but neither do all police, so be wary) and a license plate that doesn’t begin with a four-digit medallion number (all real cabs have this). Police cabs also have visible siren lights in the front and back grills, but you have to look closely to spot them.

Can have atypical, circular side-view mirrors that have been added to the mirrors that are already present.

Now that you know who to look out for, make sure you keep moving. Don’t stay in one place for too long; you will begin to look suspicious no matter who you are. Do your little illegal thing you’re trying to do and then walk away, even if it’s just to continue doing it down the block.

And don’t look around too much. Other people can see you too, you know.

Good luck and happy sneaking.

One Response to Let’s Get Weird: How to Look Inconspicuous at All Times in NYC

  1. Helmut Thick says:

    Great tips thanks! can be used in any urban enviroment

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