Car keys threaded thru my fist.
Conversation would be my preferred method.
Welcome back Zack.
The business end of my baseball bat
I hope I never have to defend myself but if it should occur I do have a license to carry and I do know how to use.
Prevention by being aware of my surroundings and avoiding places and situations where I would need to physically defend myself. But for the unlikelihood I do need to defend myself, I have a flashlight that has a taser on the end of it.
Run like hell!
Awareness, pepper spray, and a deafening alarm button.
I always find that my (unfortunately) bad-tempered demeanour, craggy face and aggressive attitude works quite well. After that a kick in the nuts also works.
Make sure you don't get into that kind of awkward situation.