“My cat does not know me when we meet a block away from home, and I gather from his expression that I’m not supposed to know him, either.”
To me, this sounds less like a cat, and more like a teenage kid, out with his friends, who suddenly spots his parents.
Not consistent with my experience...back when it was still considered OK to have outdoor cats, I had a Burmese cat who would stop patrolling for field mice when he saw me, and dash 300 yards at top speed to leap into my arms.
Cats vary, of course, as do other species. I wish some of my SO's had been half as demonstrative as that cat