Cappagh, a large farming and quarrying area in the middle of Tyrone, has been heralded as an example to the entire planet after it emerged that 98% of the townland’s energy is powered by human waste due to its biomethane and general biomass initiative.
The project, which was accidentally started when schoolmaster Kenny McGrath passed wind whilst walking past a tilly lamp causing it to ignite, has saved the Irish National Grid £300’000 in under a year. Martina Mallon spearheads the Keep Cappagh Lit programme and told us it wasn’t all plain sailing:
“It took a long time for many families to synchronise their bowel and wind movements to maintain a continuous supply of power to their homes. Children and parents were under pressure to perform on the toilet when things were running low, sometimes just for a simple cup of tea.”
Leaflets were distributed to homes in the area advising on appropriate foods for spontaneous mass energy production as well as slow burners for long-term projects. Paul O’Neill, a father of 8, explained:
“We have a system going where the 4 eldest eat porridge and spuds. They maybe don’t go to the toilet too often, but when they do it’s a hefty haul and we use that for the washing machine or oven. The younger 4 eat a lot of fruit and stuff that goes right through you. We employ their waste for the continuous running of general electricity. Myself and Maura supply the biomethane by devouring beans 4-5 times a day and that looks after the heating. It gives you a fair grasp of energy conservation.”
The Irish National Grid have laid on bus tours of Cappagh for other villages, towns and cities to see how it’s done and are told not to pass judgement on the smell as it offends the natives.
Several wake fanatics have finally spoken out concerning the issue of the deteriorating standard of tea at wakes across the county and predicted mourners will stop going if the trend continues.
In addition to the beverage scene, the quality of sandwiches have also come under negative scrutiny with one wake-goer calling them ‘a pile of shite’. Thirdly, 95% of wake-goers now say they are no craic to attend now.
88-year old chief mourner Kitty Campbell from Coalisland fumed this morning:
“I’ve had enough of the crap I’m being served at these wakes nowadays. Last week I attended six wakes, four of which I hadn’t a clue who the deceased was but at least I made the effort to nosey around the house. At one of them I had to wait over six minutes before being offered a cup. Six minutes. And when it came it was that oul weak stuff you get from sharing the one teabag between about half a dozen cups. I near walked out in disgust.”
Campbell was also critical of the sandwiches on display:
“I think I can say without contradiction that I’ve not had a decent sandwich at a wake since 2008. I was at two wakes yesterday and was given what they called a ‘beef sandwich’ at one. There was no beef in it for I opened it up and took out my glasses. I was that mad I threw it across the room and it landed on the coffin lid. That got the message across I’d say.”
Campbell concluded that it was ‘hardly worth dying now’ because of the embarrassment of her family’s catering abilities.
Meanwhile, it has been rumoured that wakes will re-introduce alcohol and fiddles to liven up the whole process a bit.
Disturbances broke out across parts of Tyrone yesterday after a report produced by the Institute of Studies said that putting milk into the cup before the tea makes it taste better.
The report, authored by Tyrone-born professor of science Wolfgang O’Neill, has stated that putting milk into the cup first, rather than tea followed by the milk, makes it tastier, and, controversially, that those individuals who put it in first are more likely to be much cleverer than those who don’t. The report went on to hypothesise that people who insist on dunking biscuits into their tea are also far more intellectually advanced than their non-dunking counterparts, stating,
‘Dunkers, previously dismissed as a bunch of uncouth, ill-mannered hoors, may actually be high-functioning geniuses with highly advanced mental faculties, with an IQ far higher even than people like Stephen Fry, that boyo who does Mastermind, and Hugo Duncan’.
O’Neill denied that the report was produced on the back of a bunch of unsubstantiated half-truths with virtually no substance.
“Abject nonsense. All my research was done under almost laboratory conditions. I watched people pour their tay in the Millwheel in Dungannon and McGlinchey’s in Coalisland, and then asked them their 7-times table and if they knew what the capital of France was. The dunkers and milk-in-first brigade were miles ahead”.
Residents living in the centre of Dungannon feared for their safety when a contingent of mildly-irritated pensioners took to the streets to protest against the findings in the report, with one shop-owner being threatened with a Blue Riband biscuit. Cyril McGlone from Altmore, determined not to be stereotyped as just another pensioner trotting out the usual generalisations, said,
“This sort of thing would never have happened in my day. It’s political correctness gone mad. Everything in moderation, that’s what I say. Young people of today have no respect. I’m 84 you know”.
O’Neill had also intended to include in his report a potential link between acting the eejit and coffee-drinkers, but struggled to find participants for the study.
“We couldn’t find anyone in the county who drank coffee, not even in Donaghmore. That’s why there’s none of thon fancy Starbucks or Costa Coffee shops anywhere. I even went into the Linen Green in Dungannon to see if they sold it and they said, ‘We don’t do cocktails’. It’s likely we might have to go as far afield as Armagh to find someone who drinks it. However”, said the scientist confidently, “Preliminary reports indicate that coffee drinkers are likely to be sly, distrustful, and have eyes that are too close together. Fact”.
An initiative by Galbally Civil Council to sober up the locals for a full month has witnessed varying degrees of success. Whilst random lane-brawling has seen a decrease in incidents, the side effects of a much soberer community have been devastating. The self-styled ‘King of Galbally’ Pat Tally (50) offered an insight into life in Galbally over the last month:
“It hasn’t been great, personally. After about three days of sobriety, the wife was sufficiently dried out to take a good look at me. It dawned on her that I looked a bit like that elephant man boy. Whilst intoxicated she must’ve thought I was Galbally’s answer to Robert Redford, and we’ve been married 28 years. She won’t even look at me now without either laughing or retching. It’s cat altogether. I wish she’d take a charge at it so we could get back to marital ignorance.”
Housewife Roisin Murphy (29) revealed other crippling side effects of sobriety in the area:
“Before the hubby sobered up, he was a great handyman. Plumbing, wiring, hammering – he could do it all. Now he cannot even dig a hole. He’s a useless lump. It seems that the stout gave him some sort of super-powers. Others are saying the same. Galbally’s falling down around us as the men are now reading books and writing oul stupid love poems. This sober craic is a disaster around here. The cattle are learning to milk each other, that’s how bad the neglect is”.
Some residents have welcomed the period of sobriety. Johnny Nugent (44) says he’s a changed man:
“Jaysus, I’m a new man. This morning I made toast and tea for the whole family. I never thought I could do that a month ago. I shower nearly every other day and the wife and I have had some deadly kissing sessions. In the past I’d have headed out the door to the site without spakin a word, with three half’uns already in me. Flip, I mightn’t drink again.”
The ‘Sober for July’ experiment ends on Wednesday