Quirky World ... Lifting the lid on nasty niffs with a deodorising loo seat


Blow out the scented candle and ditch the aerosol spray can — a US firm has introduced a deodorising toilet seat that it says will eliminate embarrassing odours and the need to cover them up.

A fan in the battery- operated seat sucks in air and pushes it through an odour-eating carbon filter, followed by an optional scent pack. Jerry Bougher, product manager of The Kohler Company, says the idea is to attack smells “where the action is”.

The $90 (€72) Purefresh seat is one of many hi-tech gadgets Wisconsin-based Kohler and its competitors have introduced in recent years to make time spent in the loo more pleasant.

When it comes to toilets, seats with features such as slow-closing lids, heat and night lights typically add $20-$100 to the cost.

Kohler sees deodorising technology as something that most can connect with. “In terms of odour, everyone’s experienced it,” said Bougher.

The seat turns on automatically when someone sits down. The fan emits a slight hum as it filters the offending odour; the air flows over a scent pack similar to air fresheners used in cars and the masking smell builds gradually.


A quarter of Britons are concerned their homes are not ready to welcome visitors this festive season — while others are ready to criticise hosts for a range of household horrors.

From dirty bathrooms and worn carpets to damp stains and wonky toilet seats, partygoers say they are ready to pick up on problems in their hosts’ homes, according to a survey by Polycell.

About one in four Britons (24%) have revealed they are worried that family and friends will judge the appearance of their home over the festive period.

The survey of 2,000 people showed 51% of people will judge others on their dirty bathrooms while 29% would be critical of a badly maintained front garden. Peeling wallpaper, cracks in walls and scuff marks are also causes for concern.


Officials have opposed a proposition to name a playground after Winnie-the-Pooh due to the bear’s unclear gender and immodest clothing.

The matter was debated in a closed-door meeting weeks ago in the central Polish town of Tuszyn, but didn’t get much media attention in Poland until recent days.

Voice recordings of the meeting were leaked to the media, with officials complaining that Pooh Bear is immodestly dressed and lacks a clear gender. One called the bear a hermaphrodite. Some said a fully clothed Polish cartoon bear named Uszatek would be a better choice.

One of the Pooh Bear opponents, Ryszard Cichy, told a newspaper that he had been joking at the end of a discussion on a playground that had gone on too long.


A seagull with a dart through its neck is surviving at a park in Wenatchee, Washington.

The Wenatchee Valley Humane Society has been receiving calls about the bird at Walla Walla Point Park for two months.

The Wenatchee World reports the seagull is able to fly. Attempts to catch it have been unsuccessful.

The dart is 4 or 5 inches long and sticks out both sides of the bird’s neck.


A kitten that went missing last month will soon be home — after a mysterious 3,700km trip.

Patsy Murphy, who runs an animal refuge centre in Maine, said the kitten was brought to her shelter by a man who found the feline in a duffel bag.

A microchip helped identify the cat, which was traced to New Mexico, but it remained unknown exactly how the cat made its way to Maine.


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