The Paul Thax Diary Podcast – 14th – 21st May

It’s ‘ot. Cecil gets emasculated by someone new and has a fall. Paul’s thoughts on bawdy Belgian nipples as his Bovril sweat seeps out. Lionel Blair looses his skin and Cathy Bates head comes off…or do they…? Passports -hurrah!

We prepare to venture to the Europe on a quest to find Cecil’s long lost sister.

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Zizzi’s – it pays to Feedback! Absurd Wait and Apology

@WeAreZizzi how long should I expect to wait for my pizza? Been 45min now, run out of wine 😦 here

Christmas Narrowboat Experience, or Equivalent *3x REPLIES in kind!

Dear Santa,

we were sorry to miss you on the canal this Christmas time but we found your flyer too late (24th Dec) on a pub table. Can we instead book for 2016, to avoid similar disappointment this year?

We noted that on the flyer it says adults get a ‘hot drink and mince pie or equivalent’ and we need to know what could possibly be equivalent to a mince pie for such a festive excursion?

Possibly the only equivalent could be a portion of Christmas pudding, and that has to be served warm (flaming preferably) and with brandy butter so is rather unpractical, for a barge so maybe your equivalent is Christmas cake? Again slightly awkward in the need for it to be cut up, and also not having dedicated unique casings to crumb-catch such as the mince pie (usually) does.

If you were thinking of serving individual apple pies, even if they be of the famous Mr Kipling variety, simply will not do. Apple pies, even Mr Kipling’s, are in no way festive. And I’m sure I do not even need to mention that mere biscuits -even chocolate covered- again are not festive and so would be out of the question.

We are aware that some shops now sell Germanic and Italian traditional Christmas sweet goods but we feel you must surely not employ these as this ride will surely be a very traditionally English ‘Do’? So no gingerbread or raisin or hard bland cakes please.

Yule log! Yes this could potentially be an equivalent -but again unless with individual cases could be too messy, and I’d hate to think of Santa having to sweep up after everyone.

On another point – is the equivalent only actually available if you run out of mince pies? Have you ever run out of them before?

If on the day we attend you’ve run out may we bring our own? Or would you suggest we get Kitty to make a batch we can bring along, and sell to yourselves as a stop gap perhaps? If we do the latter could we get a discount on our ride? If Kitty for some reason (she may not see the year out you know) cannot do the pies could we fetch Supermarkets Own Brand? And again sell them on to yourselves or even direct to fellow trippers?

Or is the equivalent available on every trip, and not just when (and if) mince pies run out?

If so the details of the equivalent could/should perhaps be denoted on the flyer, unless the equivalent differs every trip of course.

Do excuse us if we are barking up the wrong tree here, and the mince pie equivalent is not actually equivalent in terms of it’s festive nature but rather in size or volume or monetary or calorific value?

Or indeed a savoury equivalent, e.g. pork pie (not especially festive).

Would you consider an After Eight mint an equivalent? Weight-wise it obviously isn’t but depending on special offers, or lack thereof, at the shop it might have a monetary equivalence. And on another note an After Eight Mint is eaten rather faster and so people might feel slightly disappointed as the pie-eaters have a longer snack.

For booking purposes there are four of us who would like to attend, including the afore mentioned Kitty but due to her condition we wouldn’t be able to confirm her definite attendance. Beside myself and my husband our Joycie would like to come but she has mobility issues (bunions) so we would like to know about your provisions for the infirm please. Joycie also has a mince intolerance (veganism), so you can see our imperative for the “equivalent” details!

We wanted to send you this enquiry by letter but my grand neice said to save our stamps and she is emailing this instead.

We hope this finds you having a well earnt rest Santa and look forward to hearing from you (or your elves).

Season’s Greetings

Mrs & Mrs Armitage-Senior


santa canal

A Brilliant REPLY (Just over an hour later):

Dear Mr & Mrs Armitage (Senior),

Used Hoover – You’re not Kidding!


thanks for such quick & precise delivery, that’s second to none!

I was so excited to be getting this as I recently broke mine and found this make and model to be excellent!

I was so happy to find it at a reasonable price too.

Now while it’s described for sure as ‘Used’ and there are photos to show some of the ‘used-ness’ I wish Id know just HOW used it was.It must’ve been used to hoover up something wet, or been washed but not left to dry out before its been used-it STANK 😦

I’ve had this model for 2 years myself and it has never smelt so bad, I think the user had pets and so human & pet hair & skin had clogged the filter and coated the inside of the main body, head and 1 tube. As I’m so desperate to get on with hoovering I have spent the last hour thoroughly scrubbing and washing out the stinky coating and thick goop from the filter, I feel so sick now. I just wish you had accurately described how MISused it had been to inform my buying decision fully.


Good Morning
I’m sorry you are unhappy with the condition of the item, we do state it is used, and the pictures do show it is quite dirty.
unfortunately when we test them we are in a large warehouse with shutters open so that may be why the smell wasn’t noted.
If you are unhappy with it, we do have a 14 day returns policy in place should you wish to return it.
Kind Regards

Feedback I left- NEUTRAL – Filthy & v.smelly definitely not just a catalogue return, been used with wet.


Good Afternoon
Regarding your feedback we would like to point out that this item wasn’t just listed as ex catalgoue, but as a used item, in used condition.
If contacted within the first 14 working days of receiving the item we would have accepted the item back as per our 14 day returns policy.
Kind Regards


The fact it would be ‘used’ condition was fine and fully expected but it had been MISused -ie with water – and animal remenants, sticky and foul so who knows what damage that has done to the filters etc This is not supposed to be a washing hoover but a dry one.
On an aside the back filter panel does not fix on and so I have to use it with no back filter.


Good Afternoon
You have made reference to wet, was there visible water in the item?
or could it have been wiped out and then not had time to dry before use? causing what is shown in the pictures in the listing?
Kind Regards


The solidified smelly reddish gloop was all the way down the hose tube as well as throughout the head and as you saw in the body so no, not just ‘wiped’ it was a thick reddy gloop, nothing had been wiped away at all!



Good Morning
So it could be that a sweet was hoovered up an has melted. thank you.
Kind Regards


This is ludicrous, it has nothing to do with sweets, moreover what does it matter what you are guessing at and why are you even guessing?
I’m the customer here and the one who’s manhandled and cleaned the thing out. It stank of pets and was dried liquid coated throughout the machine.

I’m not sure what you are trying to achieve by arguing the toss here, certainly not a good PR job nor good reputation for your company from me or my friends and family.
I’ve used hoovers for years and years, I am not stupid. Ive even hoovered up water myself years ago and learnt what an error that is!
I find it very odd that you are even messaging to and fro about this.

Is this some sort of joke and actually the Managers children bored of school holidays?
I think eBay will agree it’s strange behaviour for a seller.


So I left Follw up feedback’ to clarify – Expected ‘used’ but not MISused.Odd msgs from seller trying to villify

Hopefully others will check the feedback scores before buying unlike I did