So you were admiring a taupe-colored sweater when you noticed your ex and his new girlfriend walking into the store. Here’s how to react.
Scan the area and look for cover. Wonder if it’s possible to hide in a clothing store that looks like the minimalist love child of a Danish architect and a white sneaker.
Realize that your only options are to hide behind a lucite wall or become one with the blond wood furniture.
Feel as exposed and vulnerable as those soldiers in the movie 1917. But instead of crossing enemy territory in WWI-era France, you are stuck in a store with natural lighting. This is much more stressful.
Lower your head and pretend to try on a cashmere mock turtleneck. Ooh, it’s so soft and buttery—wait, it’s $200 and doesn’t even cover your entire neck?! Put it back.
Ask a sales associate if they carry any wide-legged pants in your size and if there’s an empty dressing room you could hide in for a few hours. Wonder if the associate’s blank expression means they’re not down to be your accomplice or if you’re tragic for thinking you could pull off wide-legged pants with your height.
Create a distraction by knocking over a display of ankle boots made from leather and recycled laptops. Make a mad dash for the door.
Unfortunately, the boots created a deafening crash (thanks to all those recycled laptops), and now everyone in the store is looking directly at you. Act cool by stuffing yourself inside a cocoon coat.
While safely ensconced in the cocoon coat, steal a glance at your ex and his new girlfriend. Conclude that his girlfriend possesses the kind of style and confidence that can wear a plain T-shirt and jeans and manage to look like Gigi Hadid, whereas if you tried to pull it off, you’d look like you were about to change someone’s tire.
Become overwhelmed by feelings of inadequacy. Grab a bunch of mock-neck sweaters to cry into.
Feel your stomach churn as you see your ex and his girlfriend approach. Determine that your only escape is to try on a pair of high-waisted jeans and pray that the denim cuts off consciousness before they arrive.
Too late. Smile at your ex and his new girlfriend. Appear friendly and attentive as they recap their afternoon of bike rides and watching a documentary about renewable energy. Do not mention that you spent your morning in bed, ordering coffee filters on Amazon Prime, and eating a pork sandwich that you had delivered from the deli across the street.
Take a moment to congratulate yourself for handling this run-in with your ex with maturity and finesse.
Notice the store manager furiously inspecting a pile of sweaters damaged by your snotty tears. Back yourself into a stark white corner as the manager stomps in your direction.
Buy the two-hundred-dollar mock turtleneck.