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20

FRIDAY

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It’s not as if I think I’d ever need to pull a runner, but I’ve wanted to create a reserve identity for myself ever since reading The Day of the Jackal. In the 1971 book, Frederick Forsyth detailed how to become a whole new you with nothing more than the easily obtained birth certificate of a real person of similar age who died young, before establishing a paper identity of his or her own. A new set of legitimate IDs grows from this one document: Social Security card, driver’s license, passport. I wonder if computers have since plugged this hole, cross-referencing deaths and births. Today, private eye Ed Pankau will answer this and other questions in his seminar “Hide it All and Disappear.” Which brings up a good question: Are his instructions on vanishing good enough to keep you hidden if Pankau the skip-tracer were hired to track you down? At 6 p.m. at First Class, 1726 20th St. NW. $39. For reservations call (202) 797-5102. (P. F. Flitcraft, formerly Mark W. Sullivan)