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Paper Monitor

11:09 UK time, Thursday, 15 July 2010

A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.

Paper Monitor is feeling miserable.

After a splendid sun-soaked start to the summer, the morning of St Swithin's Day broke to the sound of rain drumming on windows and cars splashing through puddles.

The prospect of a barbecue this weekend seemed as distant as the end of those 40 days and 40 nights of wet weather folklore promises.

Still, at least there was some cheer to be found in the daily papers. Nothing tickles Paper Monitor's funny bone more than a shaggy dog story or, in this case, a fisherman's tale.

As the Daily Mail reports, 16-year-old angler Nick Richards landed a "golden wonder" while fishing on holiday in Poole, Dorset.

His 5lb catch - a goldfish measuring a staggering 16 inches - was believed to have been released into the wild after outgrowing its tank.

And for those Doubting Thomases among you, a photo shows Nick grinning while holding the catch - believed to be a British record for a goldfish, which he later returned.

There was more animal magic in the Sun, this time thanks to some "eggheads" from Warwick and Sheffield Universities.

Prof John Harding explains how the team he led solved the riddle of which came first - the chicken or the egg - by programming the "ingredients" chickens use to make eggs into a supercomputer to see how they were constructed.

The results showed that a particular protein in chickens acts as a tireless builder, placing one microscopic section of shell on top of the other. It initiates this building process before going off to start on another part of the egg.

Without this builder protein, the eggs would not exist. And yet it is only found in a chicken's ovaries. This means the bird must have come first.

This doesn't explain where the chicken came from but, still, one bow-legged step at a time.

With mood suitable lightened thanks to these tales of our fishy and feathered friends, Paper Monitor's mind turns to lunch.

But will it be tuna, chicken or egg and cress sandwiches today?

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