Here's my dilemma: I want to read Sarah Palin's book, Going Rogue. Now, please don't worry - confusing as it is for die-hard Labour supporter to find herself thinking about voting Liberal Democrat, I have not completely lost all sense of political reality.
I'm just interested, that's all.
The thing is, though - I read publicly. On trains, on buses, on metros. Waiting for things. I put my book down as I buy my croissant at that nice bakery in the Gare du Midi where that friendly man told me I really ought to go to California: a sign if ever there was one.
Publicly, then. People will see me reading Sarah Palin's book. And they will draw conclusions from that. You, for example, are judging me right now, aren't you? Admit it.
Should I hide it inside the latest Newsweek? Or perhaps get a T-shirt made saying: "I'm also reading the Audacity of Hope, which is much more my thing, but I only read that at home so I can really concentrate and not risk creasing the corners or bending the spine"?
But you live in Brussels, I hear you cry. No one is going to care. Well, you may think so. But there are so many Brits and Americans here that I have considered subscribing to the New Yorker just so I can sit on the metro reading it, in full view of any potential soulmate who may happen to be passing through Belgium.
What if Going Rogue has the opposite effect? Roughly, in fact, the same effect as Sarah Palin's shrill voice shouting "What's wrong with being the party of no? We're the party of hell, no!"? Then what?
Just imagine if my own Josh Lyman was watching me out of the corner of his eye, wondering if I could be the one, and then I pull that out. Would he tap me on the shoulder, and kindly ask me for my phone number so that we could get together over dinner and discuss it sometime? Or would he run screaming to another carriage?
Maybe the T-shirt is not such a bad idea after all. You know. Just in case.
Update: Barnes and Noble now produce a fluffy book protector thing for just such eventualities. Oh, and the colour? Blue. All is well with the world.