No pepper spray... no knife... the only thing I would suggest is to not get into a situation. A knife is actually a more dangerous weapon than a gun,
and can cause more suffering than a simple hole. It is also better suited to close-range attacks and can be integrated quite nicely with standard
To avoid such a confrontation, I strongly suggest you be aware of what's around you. It's amazing how much you can tell from things most people
never think of. Is someone behind a car? Glance underneath it, to get a glimpse of feet. Watch for bushes moving abnormally. Be aware of shadows that
do not belong. Listen. Humans generally make their presence quite obvious through the use of sounds, especially when they're walking. Be aware of
what's around you, in front, beside, behind, above. You don't need to walk around looking like an epileptic, just dart your eyes side to side and
take quick sideways glances when turning corners, etc.
You can train yourself in things like this simply by practicing at home. When you walk from room to room, try to get a quick mental image of
everything in your home: where the chairs are, anything in them, what's lying on the table, where are any windows or furniture or doors relative to
you, things like that. Turn it into a habit.
Then graduate yourself to walks in a park or other safe outdoor area. Soon you should be able to know where every bird, squirrel, dog, cat, or other
animal is, and what trees and bushes are around you, while looking and walking normally.
Lastly, develop an attitude in your walk. Not one of aggression (that will
get you dead!), but one of authority. When you're practicing it,
mentally convince yourself that you fear nothing and only wish to be left alone. This may sound foolish, but it works. Criminals get a lot of info on
their victims from body language, and usually the victim is not even aware they are sending 'attack me' signals.
I did all this years ago, and I have walked through some of the roughest neighborhoods around the country, unarmed, with no problems. The only problem
is that I seem to have done it too good, since every cop who sees me immediately considers me a threat.