Ben Dean-Titterrell

Politics and beer. Travel content coming soon…

Man keeps getting the wrong train to work

A man, who commutes on Tokyo’s famously excellent rail system, repeatedly gets the wrong train to work like a complete idiot.

Sources say that the man, who alternates between travelling to two workplaces on opposite sides of the city every few days, has on more than occasion started going to one location before suddenly realising he is going in the wrong direction.

Witnesses to the man’s routine mistake say it all starts when he gets on the wrong platform at his first station, despite the clearly obvious signs marking out which platform is which.

The man’s mistake is made even more embarrassing by the fact the signs at the station even have English on them.

The man is said to only notice his error when the train he is on terminates at its final station and every other passenger disembarks.

Those familiar with the situation say the man could avoid the inconvenience of having to ride the train all the way back if he just looked up from his phone for once.

It is believed that the man has thus far managed to avoid being late for work, however a source, who insisted on anonymity, said, “Running into work a minute before you’re due in isn’t a good look here. It’s not that hard to get the right bloody train. Fucking idiot.”

Man lives in Tokyo for a month

A man, 21, has lived in Tokyo, the capital city of Japan, for an entire month. Sources close to the man say he is enjoying life in a new city and is settling in well.

The individual in question is believed to be working as an English teacher for a year, having recently graduated from University. It is believed that the man moved to Tokyo with his best friend and he is reportedly glad to have had someone to share the last month with exploring the city.

Living in a sharehouse with ten strangers has, according to those familiar with the situation, been a mixed experience so far. However, given the location and relative cost of the man’s accommodation, most analysts say he has little to complain about.

The man’s new job, reportedly his first experience of long term full time employment, is said to be going well. Still in the training phase of his new job, the man is believed to be enjoying working with children despite his lack of previous experience in a teaching role.

A source, speaking exclusively to this publication, said “He’s getting used to navigating the city. He can use the public transport system fairly well now, and there’s only a fifty percent chance he’s going to get lost when he goes somewhere now – that’s a big improvement from a few weeks ago.”

The man reportedly had one quite significant incident while trying to pay his rent for the first time at a Japanese ATM. Some witnesses say the man, who struggled for some 45 minutes, swore at the machine. Different witnesses described the man shouting. Others say he was nearly brought to tears out of frustration. Some have stated that the man did all three of these things, but such statements cannot be verified at this time.

The recent typhoon Hagibis, one of the strongest typhoons to hit Japan for several decades, passed over the man without incident.

Giving a rare comment to this publication, the man said, “I’m having a great time out here. I’ve learnt and discovered so much already. It’s everything I hoped for and more. The past month has been life-changing, and I can’t wait to see what happens over the next one.”

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.

anonomised

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.

https://videoplayback.parliamentlive.tv/Player/Index/7641cd17-e739-4e5a-ad65-96ba5b74ec62?in=2018-07-18T12%3A21%3A45%2B01%3A00&out=2018-07-18T12%3A21%3A58%2B01%3A00&audioOnly=False&autoStart=False&statsEnabled=True

“[…]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.

ROAST RATING: ONE OUT OF FIVE

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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.

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“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

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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.

https://videoplayback.parliamentlive.tv/Player/Index/b63acf5f-9d8c-4ecf-a33b-74aec988921c?in=2018-07-16T17%3A05%3A52%2B01%3A00&out=2018-07-16T17%3A06%3A04%2B01%3A00&audioOnly=False&autoStart=False&statsEnabled=True

“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.

ROAST RATING: TWO OUT OF FIVE

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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.

https://videoplayback.parliamentlive.tv/Player/Index/eab0ae9f-688b-4633-93c3-6ccd28696dad?in=2018-07-09T15%3A50%3A33%2B01%3A00&out=2018-07-09T15%3A51%3A11%2B01%3A00&audioOnly=False&autoStart=False&statsEnabled=True

“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.

ROAST RATING: THREE OUT OF FIVE
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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.

https://videoplayback.parliamentlive.tv/Player/Index/eab0ae9f-688b-4633-93c3-6ccd28696dad?in=2018-07-09T15%3A55%3A12%2B01%3A00&out=2018-07-09T15%3A55%3A33%2B01%3A00&audioOnly=False&autoStart=False&statsEnabled=True

“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.]”

https://videoplayback.parliamentlive.tv/Player/Index/eab0ae9f-688b-4633-93c3-6ccd28696dad?in=2018-07-09T15%3A56%3A28%2B01%3A00&out=2018-07-09T15%3A56%3A37%2B01%3A00&audioOnly=False&autoStart=False&statsEnabled=True

“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.

ROAST RATING: THREE OUT OF FIVE
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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.

https://videoplayback.parliamentlive.tv/Player/Index/eab0ae9f-688b-4633-93c3-6ccd28696dad?in=2018-07-09T15%3A58%3A02%2B01%3A00&out=2018-07-09T15%3A58%3A17%2B01%3A00&audioOnly=False&autoStart=False&statsEnabled=True

“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.

ROAST RATING: FOUR OUT OF FIVE
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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.

https://videoplayback.parliamentlive.tv/Player/Index/7ba73d45-f34d-4679-a138-c9c3fe2f0ac7?in=2018-07-11T12%3A08%3A42%2B01%3A00&out=2018-07-11T12%3A09%3A28%2B01%3A00&audioOnly=False&autoStart=False&statsEnabled=True

“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.

ROAST RATING: TWO OUT OF FIVE

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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.

https://videoplayback.parliamentlive.tv/Player/Index/7ba73d45-f34d-4679-a138-c9c3fe2f0ac7?in=2018-07-11T12%3A10%3A34%2B01%3A00&out=2018-07-11T12%3A10%3A53%2B01%3A00&audioOnly=False&autoStart=False&statsEnabled=True

“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.

ROAST RATING: THREE OUT OF FIVE

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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.

https://videoplayback.parliamentlive.tv/Player/Index/7ba73d45-f34d-4679-a138-c9c3fe2f0ac7?in=2018-07-11T12%3A03%3A35%2B01%3A00&out=2018-07-11T12%3A04%3A09%2B01%3A00&audioOnly=False&autoStart=False&statsEnabled=True

“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.

ROAST RATING: THREE OUT OF FIVE

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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

Bottle.jpg

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.

Cap

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