• Monsieur Mediocre

    A hilarious, candid account of what life in France is actually like, from a writer for Vanity Fair and GQ. Americans love to love Paris. We buy books about how the French parent, why French women don’t get fat, and how to be Parisian wherever you are. While our work hours increase every year, we […]

  • The Post-Trump American in Paris: the newly registered sex offender

    Since the Trump election, living in Paris as an American is kind of like being a registered sex offender.

  • This time the Trump joke’s on us

    Following Donald Trump’s stunning win, America’s knee jerk reaction has been to “find humour in it all,” which JOHN VON SOTHEN finds downright pathological, especially considering it was partly responsible for Trump’s victory in the first place. 

  • The 10th arrondissement – Paris’s secret garden

    JOHN VON SOTHEN reveals why Paris’s most diverse and hipster arrondissement has become France’s Ground Zero.

  • Schizofrench at Mediapart

    For the past two years, I’ve been a contributor for the online publication Mediapart thanks to a column they’ve given me called Schizofrench. It’s a sandbox of sorts; essays and rants ranging from my love of Moleskin notebooks to my hatred for French flea markets, to the way Airbnb has changed my neighbourhood sitcom. All of it, of course, is super serious and fits in […]

  • Flea Markets: France airs its dirty laundry

    A flea market (vide grenier) visit ranks up there as one of the things people most romanticize about France. Don’t believe the hype says JOHN VON SOTHEN, who’s had his share of an institution that has seen better days

  • The Mid-Atlantic: the future voice of Europe

    The European elections will soon be upon us, yet it seems I’m the only one who cares. And I can’t even vote! But my interest lie less in the politics of Europe and more in imagining what Europe would look like if they really did go all the way, as in the full federal sense, […]

  • I want my LBP

    I don’t care if Liberation folds. I really don’t. I’m done with mourning newspaper deaths, and ever since my native Washington Post sold out to Amazon, I swore I’d never get attached to one again. I also don’t really care if Liberation becomes a Starbucks either or a Foundation Cartier or an Office Depot. What I […]

  • Stop asking me for a “bonne adresse”

    Every day it seems somebody wants a “bonne adresse” (an inside travel tip basically on where to eat, buy, or see something). It could be the Parisien friend who’s about to visit New York, the American friend about to come to Paris, or the neighbor looking for a good resto in the 10th, not to mention the […]

  • The New Normal

    Everyone in the states nowadays is talking about “the new normal,” which ironically doesn’t sound very American. It’s not like a-mazing! Or OMG! And it has nothing to do with a new music scene or breakfast product from KFC. It’s a term coined by an economist actually, Mohammed El‐Erian of PIMCO (a global investment management […]