Dispatch from the Razor's Edge, the Blog of Michael Stephen Fuchs
Dispatches tagged as:
london (85)

So were all sitting around ogling another absurdly sublime plant-based meal at another glorious vegan restaurant, when it occurred to me to ask aloud: "Wait, why are we having to CONVINCE people to go vegan?" It just seemed crazy. Thus, herewith, some of the culinary sublimity that's waiting here for you when you, too, finally decide to stop torturing baby animals to death and embrace plant-based cuisine....   (read more)

I managed to remember the anniversary of the 7/7 attacks - the 15th, in fact - and donned my usual running shirt for the day, now sadly denuded - and headed out to run in Hyde Park... slowing and taking my headphones out when I got to the 7/7 Memorial. I try to stop by there every year....   (read more)

"There's two kinds of despair that a writer can feel, one of which is: I will never make something good... But the second is: nobody could ever make something good. And that's a real despair. And every writer and artist I know has experienced both kinds." - Jonathan Safran Foer...   (read more)

Attention HMG: The normalisation of Trumpism is NOT okay. A racist, misogynist, nativist, ableist, authoritarian, violence-inciting, press-assailing, know-nothing, conspiracy-mongering, foul-mannered, pathologically lying, narcissistic, fascist kidnapper and confessed sexual predator should not be welcomed (or, indeed, allowed) in the UK....   (read more)

The job of a police officer is to preserve life - and a hero is one who sacrifices his own life so that others may live....   (read more)

So on the very long list of reasons why London rules is the fact that you can just turn up for things, as I did recently, like the annual Faraday Prize & Lecture at the Royal Society. Feeling very jaunty, I guess, I made so bold as to ask a question – and, worse! a metaphysical one. It made it into the video....   (read more)

Some photos from the dedication of the Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey, the Remembrance Sunday ceremony at the Cenotaph in Whitehall, and from Remembrance Day itself; plus a video of the two-minute silence....   (read more)

Remembrance Day, and the run-up to it, is my favourite thing on a long list of reasons I love the UK. That an entire nation pauses to visibly, and palpably, give thanks to the millions who sacrificed, fought, and died to gift us with our lives, freedom, security, and prosperity, and does so every year without fail, is incredibly beautiful to watch - and to have the privilege of being part of....   (read more)

Okay, first things first again: Britain Took Six Golds Today!!! On the water, on the track, and in the velodrome... they're calling it the greatest day in British sporting history....   (read more)

So yesterday was the first actual Olympics-day-stroke-workday - and thus the big test if anything/everything would work....   (read more)

"As I write these words there are semi-naked women playing beach volleyball in the middle of the Horse Guards Parade immortalised by Canaletto. They are glistening like wet otters and the water is plashing off the brims of the spectators' sou'westers. The whole thing is magnificent and bonkers." - Boris, the Mayor...   (read more)

So, as you will or will not have read, U.S. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, just before his big visit to London, executed the blinding diplomatic maneuver of slagging off London's epic seven-year preparations for the 2012 Olympic Games....   (read more)

For some reason the 7/7 anniversary always sneaks up on me in a way 9/11 doesn't. Luckily for me, my regular running route takes me directly beside the 7/7 Memorial, tucked in the SE corner of Hyde Park. And there, every year, as they did today, the massed flowers and notes on the hillside overlooking it tell the tale....   (read more)

So this was the Great Friday of 2012. The long years of my three-month contract were finally drawing to a close. And since it was by far the nicest day of the year so far, we all repaired to the best spot in the universe: the garden of The Troubadour in Earl's Court....   (read more)

So of a recent Saturday, Anna and I decided to head into town and act like we just hit London. Herewith, the results....   (read more)

This morning, on a single circuit of Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park, I personally counted 144 snow persons....   (read more)

So in a regularly occurring feature, Anna and I intrepidly departed Kensington & Chelsea to soak in the vibe of Christmas-time central London. (Well, okay, Mayfair.)...   (read more)

Today is Remembrance Sunday in the UK. The Queen, along with every living former Prime Minister, turn out in Whitehall to lay a wreath at the Cenotaph - the UK's memorial to all of its war dead....   (read more)

Thought it might be fun to live blog tonight's riot. Latest entries first. This page will auto-reload every four minutes....   (read more)

Stepped out of Westminster Station and came nose-to-nose with this gloriously pretty magpie. ...   (read more)

• Rocking With The Egyptians In London • A Couple of Video Recap Highlights • And "A New Beginning in Egypt"...   (read more)

One degree centigrade. Iron grey skies. Freezing, blasting wind across Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens. This was officially one of those "You Don't Have To Enjoy It / You Just Have To Fucking Do It" runs....   (read more)

Awoke Saturday morning to snow chucking it down outside the window... So we did what any self-respecting Brits would do: repaired to our very cosiest local pub and proceeded to get slowly pissed....   (read more)

Anna and I made what's sort of turning into maybe our quad-annual sortie out of Kensington & Chelsea - this time to check the Christmas lights, the Christmas window displays, and the general Christmas vibe of central London....   (read more)

It's like the Battle of Algiers out there. I counted no fewer than 41 police vans on, or just off of, Parliament Square....   (read more)

So, as mentioned, I think we've probably got bigger problems than perverted priests... But damned if I didn't go anyway...   (read more)

So I generally take a pretty live-and-let-live attitude toward religious people and clerics. As regards the Pope's current state visit to Britain, my position is probably that he should be allowed to visit Britain like pretty much anyone else...   (read more)

Today is the fifth anniversary of the 7/7 attacks. As is now customary, here's a brief list of things I did to commemorate it:...   (read more)

We wandered into a warren of barricades and ranks of police officers, some of them visibly equipped for heavy weather. My onboard radar for such things perked up and I declared: "Gotta be the Israeli Embassy....   (read more)

Well, you finally get around to booking a big holiday - and on the exact same day here comes the worst disruption of commercial air travel since WWII....   (read more)

"Bliss - a second-by-second joy and gratitude at the gift of being alive, conscious - lies on the other side of crushing, crushing boredom." - David Foster Wallace...   (read more)

Last night I had the privilege and honour of turning up for the nightly, running protest rally outside the Iranian Embassy, on Prince's Gate, opposite Hyde Park, in London....   (read more)

As you will no doubt have noticed, Iran continues to burn - both with the oppression of the mullahcracy, and also with a tremendous desire for freedom and human rights. There's a semi-organised protest/rally outside the Iranian Embassy every night this week, 6-9pm....   (read more)

I told him that really a Tube Strike is pretty much like the weather - no one can do anything about it, so everyone just works around it, and I like running, anyway. Well, by the end of yesterday, I've changed my position. My position now is: Frack TFL....   (read more)

Another year in London, another fracking Tube strike....   (read more)

Well, it's official: Kensington is now the 21e Arrondissement....   (read more)

"Britain comes to standstill after 1ft of snow" - The Daily Telegraph...   (read more)

I really love the sound of the London rain. On a Sunday morning, warm in bed, after just coming back from a trip, it's pretty much the greatest....   (read more)

Saturday picnic in Kensington Gardens, beer and olives and blackberries, sun and breeze, perfect day, video goofiness....   (read more)

Since the periodicity of my long-running quotations series has been getting asymptotic with infinity, here are the quotes that have been piling up since the last edition...   (read more)

No, I don't mean the Saturday that's Ian McEwan's novel, though it's really rather good and you should probably read that, though not at the expense of reading Atonement, which is just amazingly good....   (read more)

Shortly after posting my recent piece on the spectacularly and amusingly unsuccessful attacks in London and Glasgow, I realised I'd mislabelled the perpetrators in calling them "losers". Much more apt would have been the lovely, amusing, and oh-so-useful British epithet of "muppets". These guys truly are muppets of the first rank, and they're running a Muppet Jihad....   (read more)

"Calm soul of all things! make it mine / To feel, amid the city's jar, / That there abides a peace of thine, / Man did not make, and cannot mar." - Matthew Arnold...   (read more)

These are my slippies. I bought them at Wal-Mart. For US$7.50. Verily, America is the land where you can buy anything, anywhere, at any time, for nothing....   (read more)

My hipster Ben Sherman shirt and extravagantly ripped Versace jeans are soaked through - and by "soaked through" I mean soaked through - with fragrant sweat. The outsides of my little toes are raw and, conceivably, bleeding. I don't know. I'm shaking too much to get my boots off....   (read more)

It had stormed overnight. I got up, crawled out of the tent, and moved the now-even-more-soaked travel towel from the fence (where it had been "drying") to an actual clothes dryer in the main building. I then broke camp, stowed my pack, and hoofed it into town...   (read more)

Morning breaks on the overpriced Perranporth hotel grey and misty with a moving sky. Tim and I score breakfast in the dining room (unlimited muesli! muahahaha!), then spend a few minutes chatting with "sweet old Doreen". She'd seen a lot of coast walkers come through....   (read more)

"'I have done that,' says my memory. 'I cannot have done that' - says my pride, and remains adamant. At last - memory yields."...   (read more)

Woke up, for some reason, at half-six; couldn't get back to sleep. Put on my black armband and wore it all day. (This is the one I keep for September 11th every year, and which it now appears will be getting use twice a year.)...   (read more)

"If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear." - George Orwell ...   (read more)

I rounded her up at Victoria, off the Gatwick Express, and brought her home - where she settled in with my DSL....   (read more)

realised in a flash that I could conceivably take the narcissism, self-absorption, and exhibitionism that are so startlingly inherent in vanity web sites in general, and blogs in particular, to great new uncharted depths . . . a brave new nadir of self-promotion and life minutiae documentation. I realised I could photo- (and/or video-)document virtually every moment of an average day of my life....   (read more)

I saw my first poppy today, while running around the edge of Trafalgar Square. I saw three poppies on my run. The first roasted chestnut vendors are also out, as of last week....   (read more)

So, exactly two years ago, I was thirty-three-thousand feet over the Atlantic. Down in the hold, I had one big trekking bag, filled with my terrifically pared-down earthly possessions. Incidentally, I used that same bag tonight to carry over 24 kilos of ice from the grocery store, so it's held up pretty well. [laughter] ...   (read more)

"All the great things are simple, and many can be expressed in a single word: freedom, justice, honour, duty, mercy, hope."...   (read more)

In the days following the attacks two weeks ago, the natural resilience, sang-froid, and stoicism - not to mention sarcasm and dismissiveness - of Londoners seemed to coalesce into a more or less unified reaction to the bombers: "Sod off, you tossers."...   (read more)

And but so walking home through central London last night, I had figured I would be looking at at a total 28 Days Later scenario - walking through the eerily deserted streets of the city, my footsteps echoing off of the centuries-old stone....   (read more)

I'm totally fine. I'm sick of sending these sodding "I'm fine" messages from the scenes of atrocities, I can tell you that. But, otherwise, I'm fine....   (read more)

Morning in Robin Hood's Bay. I stretched, yawned, and looked out the window beside my bed. Then I yawned and stretched again....   (read more)

What I love about London: I love walking a single block and hearing 5 languages and 12 accents. I love that feeling of dread that I'm irretrievably missing out on the raging river of cultural opportunities that's constantly racing by....   (read more)

Truly ideal weekend: Friday evening I met up with my mates, as per always on Friday evenings, though this time out in the provinces (Egham). But it was well worth the trip. We laughed an awful lot....   (read more)

I left the office shortly after 6pm - an hour after the last civil servant had melted away - and walked the streets of Soho. I headed north then west, bouncing pinball-like through the brilliant rectangle of Soho...   (read more)

If the immediate and direct purpose of our life is not suffering then our existence is the most ill-adapted to its purpose in the world....   (read more)

Late afternoon, gorgeous and autumny out, so I dart out of the office to go stand in Trafalgar Square in the rusty last sunlight....   (read more)

Evening in SW London. Dim. It's raining! I go to the ceiling-scraping window that opens onto the inner courtyard. "Super-fantastic," I say aloud. I love the London rain....   (read more)

"For the entire earth is but a point, and the place of our own habitation but a minute corner in it; and how many are therein who will praise you, and what sort of men are they?" - Marcus Aurelius, Meditations...   (read more)

"They look down at the ground, missing. / But I never go in now - / I'm looking at the Big Sky, / I'm looking at the Big Sky now" - Kate Bush...   (read more)

"Like the falling leaves and the shifting past / Sometimes the treasured things / Are not the things that last"...   (read more)

Ali took me to Brighton on Friday, which is on the south coast 40 minutes by train from London, and widely regarded as Britain's San Francisco - much smaller, but with waterfront, pastel-painted row houses on hills, cool breezes and sunshine, a thriving gay community and a welcoming vibe....   (read more)

So perhaps good humour, good fortune, and general freedom from care have begun to wear you down, get a bit oppressive. If so, I'm pleased to be able to offer the following prescription for immediate and radical mood delevation...   (read more)

Some of you recently received an exuberant, triumphal e-mail to the effect that I finally got a proper flat. Here it is with photos:...   (read more)

"All the forces which have produced the London sky have made something which all Londoners know, and which no one who has never seen London has ever seen." - G.K. Chesterton...   (read more)

The sunlight on the garden / Hardens and grows cold, / We cannot cage the minute / Within its nets of gold,...   (read more)

So, Sir Bob Geldof, presumably running short of things to do, decided that London at the end of the year was a slightly too drab place for his taste and he got the idea of colourfully gift-wrapping a number of London's greatest buildings. And how could that be wrong?...   (read more)

If you got through the last couple of prolix dispatches, you definitely deserve some purty pictures. Luckily, I've been continuing to develop my relationship with London in no small measure through my electronic viewfinder....   (read more)

Heart is so full, and evening is mostly clear, and so I head out toward Chelsea, laptop on back - preparing to "kick it old school". That is to say, I'm going to find a congenial pub, treat myself to a pint (and possibly a half), and dispatch with great abandon....   (read more)

Did I mention my resolution to read only English novelists while I'm here? Luckily, England's produced one or two decent ones. ;^) I actually broke down once, which event I memorialized in this poem:...   (read more)

Since I became, on 18 September 2003, a legal resident of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Island, London has hardly left me two free minutes to rub together - much less to properly dispatch. ...   (read more)

Buy an A to Z. Buy your first copy of Time Out. First proper curry....   (read more)

London, Earl's Court, Sunday, after the morning autumn rain....   (read more)

Young Woman with Pen in Hair (Piccadilly Line) - michael stephen fuchs, 2003...   (read more)

close photo of Michael Stephen Fuchs

Fuchs is the author of the novels The Manuscript and Pandora's Sisters, both published worldwide by Macmillan in hardback, paperback and all e-book formats (and in translation); the D-Boys series of high-tech, high-concept, spec-ops military adventure novels – D-Boys, Counter-Assault, and Close Quarters Battle (coming in 2016); and is co-author, with Glynn James, of the bestselling Arisen series of special-operations military ZA novels. The second nicest thing anyone has ever said about his work was: "Fuchs seems to operate on the narrative principle of 'when in doubt put in a firefight'." (Kirkus Reviews, more here.)

Fuchs was born in New York; schooled in Virginia (UVa); and later emigrated to the San Francisco Bay Area, where he lived through the dot-com boom. Subsequently he decamped for an extended period of tramping before finally rocking up in London, where he now makes his home. He does a lot of travel blogging, most recently of some very  long  walks around the British Isles. He's been writing and developing for the web since 1994 and shows no particularly hopeful signs of stopping.

You can reach him on .

THE MANUSCRIPT by Michael Stephen Fuchs
PANDORA'S SISTERS by Michael Stephen Fuchs
D-BOYS by Michael Stephen Fuchs
COUNTER-ASSAULT by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book One - Fortress Britain, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Two - Mogadishu of the Dead, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN : Genesis, by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN Book Three - Three Parts Dead, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN Book Four - Maximum Violence, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN Book Five - EXODUS, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN Book Six - The Horizon, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Seven - Death of Empires, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Eight - Empire of the Dead by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN : NEMESIS by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Nine - Cataclysm by Michael Stephen Fuchs

ARISEN, Book Ten - The Flood by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Eleven - Deathmatch by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Twelve - Carnage by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Thirteen - The Siege by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Fourteen - Endgame by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN : Fickisms
ARISEN : Odyssey
ARISEN : Last Stand
ARISEN : Raiders, Volume 1 - The Collapse
ARISEN : Raiders, Volume 2 - Tribes
Black Squadron
ARISEN : Raiders, Volume 3 - Dead Men Walking
ARISEN : Raiders, Volume 4 - Duty
ARISEN : Raiders, Volume 5 - The Last Raid
ARISEN : Fickisms ][ – This Time, It's Personal
ARISEN : Operators, Volume I - The Fall of the Third Temple
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