I was once self conscious . . . but now I'm short, fat and balding so I've lost what little bit of self consciousness and self respect that I ever had in the first place.
Actually . . . go caching with Hiram . . . you'll soon lose all of your self consciousness and inhibitions . . . and suddenly find yourself craving alcoholic beverages for whatever reason. . . . Of course he also tends to attract cops . . . cops and ticks . . . so you soon learn to get over that self conscious feeling.
And then there was the Fitz Cache . . . . . . I would like to say that this cache helped me lose my self consciousness, but to tell the truth I was pretty oblivious about what was happening here . . . God loves idiots, right?
OK, in all seriousness, at one time I was all about being the Stealthy Ninja Cacher -- and in fact my Ninja Name was Wo Tan Jang . . . I did all of the tricks . . . tying the shoelaces even though I was wearing boots with zippers, acting as though I was taking pictures with my GPSr . . . of a stop sign and pretending that I was using my GPSr as a cell phone . . . and was on the receiving end of one of those 1-900 phone calls.
But then I realized something . . . something I discovered in my "normal" work . . . if you act as if you belong somewhere and don't act all secretive, most folks will simply ignore you . . . they may give you a quick glance and wonder why you're lifting up all the lamp post skirts . . . or stopped beside that guardrail . . . or blindly thrashing through the woods and then crashing out on to the trail . . . but for the most part they ignore you . . . or may ask what you are doing . . . which is pretty much what Just PJ66 said.
I try not to lie . . . I was raised by Bible-thumping Baptists parents . . . although now ironically enough in my adult life I find that my own mother lies all the time, but that's a whole other story about how she lives in her own fantasy world and so perhaps those lies are reality to her . . . but as I said that's a whole other session on the counseling couch . . . what I'm trying to say is that if I'm asked by a person I look at it as an opportunity to explain geocaching and perhaps gain another convert to our cult of caching. No need to come up with some cockey-mainey ideas . . . although it might be fun just once to tell a person I'm a stalker and see what they do . . . probably mace me.
That said . . . if I'm ever in doubt I have been known to move on . . . I have no issue wading in to a place and letting folks know what I'm doing if they ask . . . but sometimes folks look sketchy to me . . . and in these cases I may pass on the cache. If I'm in doubt as to whether I should be some place I read through the description and/or logs hoping to find some guidance (i.e. "Don't worry about the no hunting signs, I have permission to place a cache here" or "There are some No Tresspassing signs, but that's for the neighbor's land . . . you will not be tresspassing" or "Don't worry . . . I know this cache is in the front yard, but the person here knows about the cache and actually likes watching cachers" or "Don't worry if you hear banjo music here and someone yelling, "Squeal like a pig. Squeal like a pig" . . . it's OK.")
If someone is right next to that bench, statue, etc. I may wait for them to move on, I may pass on the cache or I may just wade right in, explain what I'm doing and let them know that I'm about to search for a cache so they have the option of just sitting there and letting me get within 5 inches of feeling them up, they can move over for just a few minutes or they can join me if they are so inclined . . . I always hope they'll go for the first option . . . but they never go for that option . . . comes back to the whole being stalked by a short, fat, balding blind guy I suppose.
"Courage is not the absence of fear, but the realization that there is something more important than fear."
"Death is only one of many ways to die."