Reading someone's else magazine on the Tube, less so... are you reading my magazine? why are you reading my magazine?
But today I can reveal a new tactic: carrying a 4 foot tall, mock Victorian post box.
Whether you're in a taxi, on the street corner or in a bookstore, people want to talk to you if you're being pressed into the ground by one of these. I've lived in London for 8 years and after carting one around this morning, I am left amazed by its power.
Every door was opened for me, one woman wanted to know how I'd made it (for the record I admitted I hadn't). Several people even offered to carry it for me.
Anyway, why was I carrying a mock Victorian postbox?
On Saturday (28 May) at the Gower Street branch of Waterstone's I'm giving a 'postcard tour' of the shop. And at the end of the tour I'll be offering a free postcard writing service. I'll pay for the stamp (well, the British Postal Museum & Archive will actually) and the postcard, but there's a catch. I'll be writing people's messages for them.
Of course, to hand will be all the techniques of the Edwardians - tilted stamps, codes and other ways to play with the form. Hopefully I'll be able to put a few examples up of what people asked me to write next week.
For more details click here or see the postbox in store. There are a few spaces still left on the tour.
And then this Thursday (26 May) is my talk at the BPMA in Clerkenwell, London. Like the Waterstone's tour it's free but you do have to book. Click here for info on how to get a ticket.