Doing a Runner
Crime is bad. We certainly don’t condone it, but sometimes, dashing from a banquet is completely necessary. That, we do understand. Surely as an underprivileged globetrotter you have thought at least once, “Life would be so much cheaper if we didn’t have to eat,” (science hey – sometimes it sucks). Having said that, food doesn’t always have to be costly, nor do you always have to eat it out of a dumpster. So if you want to live like both a royal and a fugitive in one night, then follow our step-by-step guide to ensure total success.
1. Picking the Place
Deciding on where to dine for your stolen feast is the most vital ingredient to a runner’s overall satisfaction of the experience. There are three factors you should consider before sitting down to gorge: possible escape routes, distance from place of residence and standard of restaurant.
The escape route is key. You will want to have as little contact as possible with the venue’s staff of the venue as you exit. No contact is obviously ideal, but minimal contact is still okay. Places with alfresco dining on the street are perfect, as are cafés with open courtyards out the back. If you can spy an easy place to duck out from, you’re good to go. If not, you can chance it with other tactics or just move on.
Try and eat out in a different area to that of where you are sleeping, or at least one a fair distance away. Thinking you are safe just because the escape was swift is not a reasonable assumption. You could run the risk of bumping into a staff member on the street a day or two later. Remember, it’s a small world after all.
Find a happy medium between McDonalds and The Ritz-Carlton. If you’re going to all this effort, you may as well treat yourself to something with more sustenance than a chicken nugget. Don’t get too greedy though – it seems unlikely you’ve packed a ball gown or tuxedo in your knapsack, and without these, its probably safe to say fine-dining staff will know you’re up to no good before you even step foot in the door.
2. Presentation and Attitude
Before you go out, prepare for the occasion. Dress plain, yet proper. If you’re in a foreign country, you automatically stand out to others. Be stealthy: tie back them dreads, change out of those Ali-Baba pants and hide the collection of ratty wristbands tangled on your forearm.
Also, it’s important that you don’t act like you’re the FBI. Hospitality workers see hundreds of different faces every week. Only the nutters get a place in their memory bank, so just go about your business like you’re out for any other regular meal, and you’ll be out of their mind.
When ordering, keep in mind the stealth factor. Get a decent feed in, but probably steer clear of any deluxe alternatives. You’ll have to put on a pretty good act to convince the staff you are valuable enough to afford what is really only reserved for the a-listers.
3. Making your Escape
There are many ways to dash post-dine, but there is always a best fit according to the layout of the establishment. You may decipher your own method during the meal, but if you feel you need to rely on an old-faithful, I recommend the get up and go, go, go. If you are seated close to the street or within easy access to an exit, it’s plain and simple. Get up, walk straight out and don’t stop until you’re out of sight. Do not turn back to see if anyone has noticed – this will make it obvious. Once around a corner or in an obstructed view of the venue – piss bolt.
4. The Aftermath
Doing a runner is an exhilarating, adrenaline-fuelled experience. The look of panic on your friends’ faces will no doubt set you off in fits of uncontrollable laughter. Be weary of the noise you make and remember your first priority is to get to a safe zone. Avoid the area of the place you stole from for a few days, but if you absolutely have to return, stay as far away from the restaurant as possible. Most importantly, don’t get addicted to the art. After getting away with stealing once, you’ll probably start to wonder why you shouldn’t just do it again and again. Ever seen Banged Up Abroad? Yep, jail – that’s why.