Monday, July 14, 2008

Reasons to be cheerful

Mao Tse Tung Zedong I'm thinking that many of the posts on my blog have been rather negative lately, and as I'm in a positive mood I'll try to write something positive.

Another solution to the fuel crisis: biogas generators. These are apparently widely used in 'third world' countries and have a very high acceptance rate in China and the Indian sub continent. Biogas generators have been developed which provide for the production of biogas and allow fermentation and sedimentation. A biogas generator can supply up to 60% of houshold energy needs. If the developed world didn't waste so much of its waste, almost every home could have self sustaining energy. Why pump the stuff into the sea if it can generate power? I find the idea that our own excrement could help to solve the energy crisis very uplifting.

I've decided I really like 'The Living End'. This group has been around for a while but I'd never really listened to them until now (shows how out of touch I am). They have great energy, great tunes and a killer guitar sound. They actually sound like a real rock band, not some pre packaged pop fabrication that seems to be the norm these days.

Check them out:

Read more about them here:

Chinese artists are blossoming onto the world stage with innovation and brilliance. In contrast to a great deal of Western contemporary art, they actually have ideas, humour and the technique to carry it off and make it meaningful. Artists like Zhang Xiaogang: (see images here) have made a real impression on me. The political pop art and reinterpretation of socialist realist imagery of Wang Guangyi makes sense of the rising level of consumerism and capitalism which seems at odd with hard line socialist philosophy. China is emerging not only as an economic power but as a major cultural force.

Here are some other reasons to be cheerful:

Some of Buddy Holly, the working folly
Good golly Miss Molly and boats
Hammersmith Palais, the Bolshoi Ballet
Jump back in the alley and nanny goats

18-wheeler Scammels, Thumbing out the candles
All other mammals must eat their oats.
Seeing Piccadilly, Fanny Smith and Willy
Being rather silly, and porridge oats

A bit of grin and bear it, a bit of come and share it
You're welcome, we can spare it - yellow socks
Too short to be haughty, too nutty to be naughty
Going on 40 - no electric shocks

The juice of the carrot, the smile of the parrot
A little drop of claret - anything that rocks
Elvis and Scotty, days when I ain't spotty,
Sitting on the potty - curing small pox

(from Reasons to be Cheerful, Part 3 by Ian Drury and the Blockheads)


Bikran said...

hi fren .. back again :d
really your writes are so worth reading .. i just love reading them .
and i am glad that you found a solution for the third world too ..
well biogas generators are in use in our country too (nepal).being the worlds 2nd largest country in water resource we nepalese still are suffering the scarcity of electricity.In that case biogas generetors prove to be a very practical way . thanks for this write
take care

Liam said...

Hi, thanks for your comment. It's interesting to hear that biogas generators are used a lot in Nepal. I'm surprised that biogas generators haven't really been discussed as an energy option here in Australia.

Australia is quite the opposite in terms of water resources; we have been suffering a severe drought for some time now, yet very few homes have water cisterns to collect rain water. I think simple and inexpensive measures like these could make a big difference.

Jenny said...

What's the difference between biogas generators and biogas? Isn't using food for fuel now discredited because it will lead to massive food shortages?
I must admit I know very little about all the science.

Liam said...

Hi Jenny, I think you are confusing biogas and bio fuel. You're right: Bio fuels like ethanol produced from corn could lead to food shortages as every acre used for fuel is one less that can be used to produce fuel.

Biogas generators generate energy from waste (human and animal manure). They are hermetically sealed containers which build up pressure from the release of methane gas. More information here:

It would be great if politicians looked into recycling shit instead of just talking it... (oops, there I go being negative again).

marydane said...

I also thought you are talking about the bio fuel. Thanks for clearing it out.:)

iWalk said...

Actually, I saw Wang GuangYi's productions were sold at Queen Victoria Building in Sydney.

Liam said...

"Actually, I saw Wang GuangYi's productions were sold at Queen Victoria Building in Sydney."

I didn't know this, I'll have to have a look next time I'm in the city. Chinese artists are very well representented at the 2008 Sydney Biennale: I think their work is by far the most interesting.