n the eight years I've been writing about food, London's (and subsequently the rest of the country's) obsession with burgers has been steadily building. I've written countless articles on the comings and goings of the patty power players.
If it is folly to mistake the echo of a London pub for the voice of the kingdom (to paraphrase Jonathan Swift), then it's correct to state that such voices are often the first to articulate the iniquities of life on this island.
So Friday is Valentine's Day, treasured by loved-up couples, loathed by single souls and forgetful boyfriends. Even in cold, grey (most likely wet) London there are those who'll still get excited for 14 February, despite overpriced menus at restaurants and 'special offers' on flowers outside the station. In London there is plenty to see...
I cannot emphasise enough just how far removed I am from those annoying people who are seemingly born with a 6-pack and effortlessly cruise through runs without breaking a sweat. It's all about hard graft for me. Like many 'growing lads', I was a victim of chronic puppy fat/grow baggage at school and running was the last thing I wanted to do.
Margot Fonteyn was the most famous ballet dancer England ever produced. And she was brought up in Waldeck Road in Ealing, and later in Elm Grove Road by the Common.
In London work carries on as semi-normal. Certainly the profound and crucial ritual of lunch continues unabated.
Unpaid internships, especially those in Westminster, have been the focus of much attention over recent years. The image of MPs enjoying huge expenses allowances while their office interns sweat it out for their lunch is one banded around by some areas of the media and campaign groups alike.
David Moore, the phenomenally successful restaurateur behind the Michelin-starred Pied à Terre and L'Autre Pied, is about to launch his next food venture. I caught up with him at his Charlotte Street venue to chat about his upcoming restaurant.
We're in the air en route to Lisbon for the first leg of a once in a lifetime journey around the world in fourteen days. It's early and whilst the team rest up before a day exploring the city, it seems like a good opportunity to reflect on where we are at.
The misconception is that chessboxing novelty will eventually wear off, hence the resistance on behalf of the sponsors. However, continued sold out shows, expansion across the country, entertained punters, new athletes and chessboxing gyms suggest differently, and are all things that London Chessboxing takes very seriously.
The true economic impact of such strikes is hard to calculate accurately, but that doesn't stop lobby groups from throwing big numbers around... Once such a number is picked up in the popular press, it is widely quoted without examination, as the press coverage of the recent strike reveals.
Lynda's supposed to meet me at the train station but the Stilo's out of action: some sort of steering rod calamity that will cost more to fix than we paid for the infernal thing. For about a trillisecond I consider taking a mechanic's course then remember I have better things to do. I'm not sure what, exactly, but I do.
On Tuesday, 4 February, London life as we knew it came to a 'special service' halt. For two days, disgruntled Londoners made their way to work above surface, furiously tapping tube lines into Twitter in a bid to come out triumphant in their quest for underground solace.
Milly and I were in a Brockley coffee shop when I shared my observation. We always spoke with vigour and despite her femininity our meetings had a Frost/Nixon style frisson. Old fashioned literate types would call her bookish. I would call her a nerd. A hot nerd.
Fin and I first met at a house party four years ago. He'd just been to see The XX at Maida Vale studios earlier that day, so was feeling musically inspired to start something new. Although we didn't form THIEF that year, we began sending each other music we liked and kept in contact while I was studying at Sussex Uni in Brighton and he was DJing and running club nights in London.
If the calculations show that a job is obsolete, let's do something about it. Yes we need jobs. We need people doing work that is relevant, useful and advantageous to the economy. But not just any jobs, not jobs for the sake of having jobs, or because Bob Crow, with his ideological blinkers and fat pay check says so. We need real jobs, not artificial ones.