Podcast 22 – Christmas Special, slanting toilets and the big biz quiz(mas)

In our Christmas edition of 9 to when? Jamie surprises Mat with a Christmas quiz, they discuss employees taking the pee with excessive toilet breaks and neither can decide if small business owners should be more Santa or more Scrooge.

18 December 2019

Listen to episode 22

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Show notes


Shoppers to spend £4.4bn with small retailers this Christmas

  • 93% of shoppers say it is important to shop at small businesses, creating an expected spend of £4.4bn this Christmas
  • People plan on buying a fifth of their gifts from independent businesses
  • The North West will see the highest number of people buying from small businesses, at £105 per person
  • Jamie and Mat plan to shop small in order to support UK SMEs this Christmas

Inventions and innovations

Toilet designed with ‘inconvenient slope’ could wipe out extended loo breaks taken by workers

  • A simple idea: a slanted toilet that means you don't spend too long on the toilet
  • A survey by protecting.co.uk found that some people were spending up to 28 minutes on the toilet
  • Researchers worked out that on an average wage of £12.78 an hour, these lengthly loo breaks cost companies £1,500 per year, per employee
  • Motorway service stations are looking at using these toilets too
  • Jamie and Mat are undecided on the usefulness of this invention

The big biz Christmas quiz(mas)

  • Knitted fireplace jumper - real
  • Partridge and pear tree set – fake
  • Christmas in a box, all your favourite food delivered to your door on Christmas day – fake
  • A woodland inspired reusable Christmas cracker – real
  • An illuminated indoor half Christmas tree – real
  • The at home ice rink – fake
  • Christmas day land trains – real
  • A shop that sells Christmas cactuses – fake
  • Festive family feud prevention kit – fake
  • Christmas hobby horse that uses real horses skulls – fake, although vegan versions of this product are available
  • Mat scored 6/10

Brilliant or bonkers?

“I am not alone at all, I thought. I was never alone at all. And that, of course, is the message of Christmas. We are never alone. Not when the night is darkest, the wind coldest, the world seemingly most indifferent. For this is still the time God chooses.”

– Taylor Caldwell

Music by:

Death of Lovers by John Hall

Christmas by Blowfelt


words by <span>{authorName}</span>

Jamie Maddison has written for a range of publications including Lonely Planet, Geographical, Diplomat, and Hidden Europe.

Article updated on: 24 March 2020

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