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September 17, 2010
Everyone pretended they hadn't heard in order to preserve the illusion of a friendly ice-breaker. There were smiles all around. I needed to get out of there but fast.

"Ladies," I said, standing up, "excuse me."

I legged it for the lobby.

"Wait, hey," said the citizen, "you haven't told us anything about yourself."

I didn't turn around.

Not a looker in the bunch. I didn't need to be there when they started scratching and biting.

The actual conference wouldn't start for another fifteen minutes. I stepped outside onto the streets of an unfamiliar city to look for coffee.