Ben Dean-Titterrell

Politics and beer. Travel content coming soon…

Soon-to-be Graduate thinking of restarting abandoned blog

A SOON-TO-BE GRADUATE is mulling over the complexities of restarting his old blog, nearly a year after last posting anything on the site.

Sources close to the individual in question revealed that the long and drawn out summer is pushing the 21-year-old to restart his small, largely ignored passion project.

The blog has remained untouched for almost a full twelve months, and there has been little indication as to what led to the extended absence.

Speculation about why the graduate-in-waiting abandoned the blog has been rife, with some pinning the blame on a lack of motivation and ideas, others pointing to a decision to devote more time to university studies, and more outspoken theorists claiming the individual’s personal laziness was to blame.

The hiatus has reportedly left the blog in a dire state, with multiple regular series coming to abrupt and unexplained ends.

Questions remain about the future direction of the blog, with claims surfacing that unexpected changes in the graduate’s future plans are likely to push content to focus on the country of Japan.


University student having crisis of confidence

A UNIVERSITY STUDENT is going through a crisis of confidence about their entire future, according to reports.

The student, whose identity could not be confirmed at this time, has recently begun to doubt whether their life will pan out the way they want.

The complete breakdown in confidence about their life’s course is said to have started only a few months ago at the end of the student’s second year of university.

A source close to the unnamed 20-year-old said, “They realised suddenly that they were over 60 per cent through their degree and had only a rough plan about what they were going to do once they graduated.

“They just started whining to everyone around them about how they didn’t see an obvious path into their chosen industry. It was really annoying, honestly.”

An expert in the field of whiny students, Dr Ex Pert, said that this kind of meltdown about future career prospects is common.

Dr Pert said, “We often see the approach of third-year accompanied by feelings of dread and hopelessness towards the future.

“With opportunities often low paid and insecure, graduate job markets saturated, and all the rich kids having guaranteed jobs at their parents’ firms, many students see their only option to be throwing their hands in the air and cursing about the injustice of it all.”

Reports are also circulating that the student recently quit their part-time job in order to devote more of their time to studying and doing extracurricular activities.

It’s believed they want to be able to present themselves as the best candidate possible for a job that will often have dozens if not hundreds of applicants for a single role.

This publication has obtained an anonymised photo of the student in question.


IN CRISIS – a student who has no idea what they’re doing

It remains to be seen whether the student will be able to get a hold of themselves and figure out a realistic path to personal and professional fulfilment.

If you’re a student struggling to see a future for your life after graduation and have been affected by any of the issues raised in this story, join the club.

Parliamentary Roasts of the Week: W/C 16/07/18

Head image

Chamber of the House of Commons” by UK Parliament / CC BY 3.0 / Fire are 100 emojis placed upon original image

In an attempt to prove that the least appreciated of the UK’s age-old parliamentary conventions is MPs and Peers roasting each other, I’ve started a new project for this blog. Every week I’ll aim to bring you the best quips, one-liners, and straight fire roasts dished out in the Palace of Westminster.

W/C 16/07/18

We’re kicking off this week with a look at PMQs, one of the most reliable sources of Parliamentary roasts. This week, however, was a significant dissapointment. There wasn’t a single good joke in the exchanges between the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition. The only passably decent jab from anyone in the whole session was from the SNP’s Ian Blackford.

“[…]a Prime Minister who is in office but not in power[…]”

This isn’t even good to be honest. In a regular week we wouldn’t even feature it, but this session was so devoid of good banter that this is the highlight.



It’s now Thursday and the new Brexit Secratary Dominic Raab is anwering questions from MPs. All fairly run of the mill until Conservative MP Chris Green unleashes what I’m sure he thought was a truly savage roast.

“Does my right hon. Friend agree that to have a second referendum would undermine the democratic process and that anyone calling in this place for a second referendum should perhaps step down, have a by-election and ask for a second opinion on themselves?”

‘Got em! You like second referendums, huh? Well how do you like second elections? Huh?! How do you like them apples?’ – Chris Green’s internal monologue, probably


Bonus House of Lords Roast

The Commons was so devoid of roasts this week that we’re forced to turn to the House of Lords to see if there’s anyone spitting fire in the Palace of Westminster. I was only able to have a quick look through, but I found one quip worthy of inclusion from Labour’s Lord Touhig on Monday on the NATO summit.

“However, to date transatlantic unity is undermined by the President of the United States. We never know what Mr Trump will say next—and, frankly, I suspect that nor does Mr Trump.”

It’s not imaginative; yeah we get it Trump’s stupid. But the delivery was good and, frankly, I’m clutching at straws this week. Lord Touhig’s our first Peer roaster, and until we have another he holds the honourary title of Lord of Roasts.



Roaster of the week

The last thing to do is crown our Roaster of the Week. He seemed so damn pleased with his effort that it would unfair to give it to anyone but Chris Green.

My time may not be particularly valuable, but it certainly is limited. If you’ve spotted a roast in Parliament that you think is worthy of being included in Roast of the Week, let me know by contacting me.

Parliamentary Roasts of the Week: W/C 09/07/18

Head image

Chamber of the House of Commons” by UK Parliament / CC BY 3.0 / Fire are 100 emojis placed upon original image

In an attempt to prove that the least appreciated of the UK’s age-old parliamentary conventions is MPs and Peers roasting each other, I’ve started a new project for this blog. Every week I’ll aim to bring you the best quips, one-liners, and straight fire roasts dished out in the Palace of Westminster.

W/C 09/07/18

Kicking things off with the first ever Parliamentary Roast of the Week is this fire from Jeremy Corbyn in response to the Prime Minister’s statement on Brexit from Monday. With David Davis and Boris Johnson resigning their cabinet posts within the proceeding 24 hours of the PM’s statement, Theresa May was a sitting duck.

“To be fair—I want to be fair to the former Brexit Secretary and the former Foreign Secretary—I think they would have resigned on the spot on Friday, but they were faced with a very long walk, no phone and, due to Government cuts, no bus service either. So I think they were probably wise to hang on for a couple of days so they could get a lift home in a Government car.”

Corbyn’s jab landed on David Davis, Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister, and the government more widely. One roast, four hits.


Theresa May didn’t hold back in her response to the Leader of the Opposition on Monday, giving back some banter of her own. Under that much pressure, the heat of the roasts she got in was admirable.

“The right honourable Gentleman has been in this House for quite a long time, and I know that he will have heard many statements. The normal response to a statement is to ask some questions. I do not think that there were any questions anywhere in that; nevertheless I will—[Interruption.]”

“At the beginning of his response, he thanked me for giving him early sight of my statement. It is just a pity that he obviously did not bother to read it.”

I’ve included two quotes here from May’s reply. (The custom will be to treat any roasts in the same contribution as part of a larger encompassing roast.) Both coming in hot on the banter-metre. Lots of thinking on the feet action here.


Someone I didn’t expect to ever feature in Roasts of the Week was Iain Duncan Smith. The quiet man made a quip about the Labour leader and his shadow cabinet. A well-worn road to go down if you’re looking to roast Jeremy Corbyn, but the delivery was strong.

“Whatever one’s view might be on the plan that my right honourable Friend has been talking about, I urge her not to accept a single recommendation from the Leader of the Opposition, as nobody else in his party does so.”

For the sheer achievement of even making it into Roasts of the Week, something he may never manage again, IDS gets our highest rating so far.


This Wednesday featured a rare PMQs session in which the Prime Minister and the Leader of Opposition didn’t feature. Instead, they sent stand-ins, Cabinet Minister David Lidington took Theresa May’s role and Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornbery took the Leader of the Opposition’s place. Thornberry came straight out of the block with a football themed shot at the Government.

“Let me wish Gareth Southgate and the England team the best of luck for this match and hopefully for the final on Sunday. I may know very little about football, but even I can see that England’s progress so far at the World cup shows what can be achieved when all the individual players work effectively as a team, when there is a clear game plan, when they are all working together and, of course, when everyone respects and listens to the manager. Can I simply ask the Minister what lessons he thinks the England team could teach this shambles of a Government?”

This one’s a little long winded. I also feel it could have been better the other way round (i.e. ‘what could the government learn from the England team?’) But, could be worse and its certainly topical.



Another go from Thornberry here at PMQs. More jabs at the Cabinet and Government more widly. All her roasts so far have been focused on government dismay, plenty of material to work with.

“May I ask the Minister once again the question I asked him at PMQs in December 2016, when he compared Labour’s shadow Cabinet to “Mutiny on the Bounty” remade by the “Carry On” team. By those standards, what would he describe his lot now as—perhaps “Reservoir Dogs” remade by the Chuckle Brothers?”

This is funny, fair play to whoever thought this one up. Turns out this isn’t even the first time the Chuckle Brothers have been mentioned in Parliament, it’s actually the fourth. Better stuff here from the Shadow Foreign Secratary.



David Lidington didn’t throw many banter punches in during his exchanges with Emily Thornberry, but he got one roast in right as the PMQs session started.

“Finally, I am sure that all Members, whichever part of the United Kingdom they come from, would join me in congratulating Gareth Southgate and the England team on their fantastic performance in the quarter-final on Saturday, and in wishing them the very best for this evening’s match against Croatia. I will happily buy the right hon. Member for Islington South and Finsbury (Emily Thornberry) a flag to help her to join in.”

Blink and you’ll miss it, this is a poke at Thonrberry’s resignation from her position as Shadow Attorney General in 2014 after posting a photograph of a house in Rochester adorned with England flags. Niche, but a fairly fire roast here.



That’s all the roasts we’ve got time for this week, all that remains is to crown our Roaster of the Week. As he may never have the chance to win this covetted acolade again, I have to give the innaugral Roaster of the Week award to Iain Duncan Smith.

My time may not be particulalry valuable, but it certainly is limited. If you’ve spotted a roast in Parliament that you think is worthy of being included in Roast of the Week, let me know by contacting me.

1001 Beers: 16. Thornbridge Jaipur


Thornbridge Jaipur IPA

From: England

Brewed by: Thornbridge

First brewed: 2005

ABV: 5.9%

Obtained from: Beerhawk

I’ve had a Thornbridge beer before for this blog, and I’m afraid it was not a success. I think more than anything else it was the style wot lost it; I’ve never been a stout fan. But I’ve read good things about Thornbridge as a brewery, so in a style that’s much more to my taste, I’m expecting good things.

We’re off to a good start colour-wise. That’s a lovely bright yellow. I love to see beers with a nice bright colour and this really ticks that box. There’s a haziness there too. I honestly sit on the fence on the haze/no haze debate. I think it works in Jaipur’s favour here though. In short: it’s a lovely looking beer.


You get citrus everywhere with this one, and the first place you get it is in the aroma. It’s lovely and fresh, smelling of lemons and oranges. When we get onto flavour I taste even stronger citrussy notes. It’s razor sharp and only gets sharper the further back on the tongue it goes. I like a sharp note to a beer but this was a little sharper than what I’d have in a perfect world.

All in all, this is a top quality beer. It’s got plenty of flavour to it, it’s very well made, and the citrusy notes make it a very refreshing IPA. No less than four stars.

4 out of 5

1001 Beers: 15. Brooklyn Lager


Brooklyn Lager

From: USA

Brewed by: Brooklyn Brewery

First brewed: 1988

ABV: 5.2%

Obtained from: Beerhawk

If you haven’t tried it you’ve almost certainly seen Brooklyn Lager. You see it everywhere, and you can almost guarantee that if a pub or bar sells beer by the bottle, it’ll stock Brooklyn. I must admit, this isn’t the first time ever I’ve had this beer, but it is the first time I’ve properly considered its merits rather than just casually sipping away.

Let’s start with that colour. Far darker than a typical lager, more amber than gold. Not that it’s too dark, it still catches the light well. Off the top of my head, it’s probably the most distinctiveness lager I’ve had in my time. I think if you were to show it to me without saying what it was, my first guess would be IPA.

I get a pleasant fruity hop aroma to the nose. This aroma’s strong and I might go as far as to say its stronger than the flavour of the beer. The flavour’s good; it’s sweet and malty and goes down really smoothly. I don’t think the intensity of the flavour is on the same level as the intensity of the aroma, but maybe that’s just me.


Brooklyn Lager is incredibly drinkable. It’s effortless, and from my limited experience in the world of beer that isn’t something that’s always guaranteed. Without a doubt, I’d have this beer again and I think it’d best suite a scenario where the beer isn’t the main reason for being where you are. It’s not a performance piece, its a companion. And sometimes that’s everything a beer needs to be. Four stars.

4 out of 5

1001 Beers: 14. Goose Island IPA

Goose Island IPA

Goose Island IPA

From: USA

Brewed by: Goose Island

First brewed: 1993

ABV: 5.9%

Obtained from: Beerhawk

I’d been looking forward to this one for some time. I’d seen and read and heard good things about it. So, it was with a sense of optimism that I went into this, with the abiding memories of my previous tasting from Goose Island positive ones.

The first thing that hits me: citrus. There was a strong citrusy taste that came immediately to my mind. Then came the hoppiness a mere moment later. To my taste, they were both strong and forceful, but they played off each other well. They complimented one another and balanced out nicely.

There was also a sharpness to this beer. From my very limited experienced IPAs can often have less of an edge to them, blunter somewhat they a crisp lager. But this one had a sharpness that I liked. It added to the refreshing nature of the beer.

Bottle CapAnother nice thing about this beer was the colour. It seems almost silly and unimportant but I really believe the colour of a beer adds a lot to how much you enjoy it. The glowing golden colour was a lovely thing to look at. Never underestimate colour in a beer.

This was great. (Though my memories of it, for now, might be somewhat soured by the fact I dropped and broke one of my favourite glasses while drinking it.)

Broken Glass

I could drink pints of this all night long. A certain four.

4 out of 5