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Paper Monitor

11:38 UK time, Thursday, 9 June 2011

A service highlighting the riches of the daily press.

The headline writer's art is surely among the most subtle and intricate of all newspaper production skills.

It's a tricky balance. Within the space available, one must attract the reader's attention, summarise the story and make the reader want to investigate further.

Sometimes, however, a headline occurs that supersedes the latter consideration: one so effective that makes reading the actual body text entirely redundant.

One such headline appears in today's Daily Mirror. Four crocs in a semi in Croydon, it reads (alas, the online version is more expansive).

And that's pretty much the story - a quartet of 3ft and 4ft-long amphibious reptiles have been discovered in a house in the south London suburb.

Paper Monitor salutes this economical brevity, neither newsprint nor paper being cheap.

However, not all of Fleet Street is so punctilious as the Mirror's back bench when it comes to conserving our natural resources.

In the Independent, Deborah Ross admits to an eco-inferiority complex:

If you ask me, of all the strains put upon a modern marriage, I wonder why no mention is ever made of what happens to a relationship when one person becomes much more ecologically worked up than the other. This is what has happened in our house, with my husband having become so worked up that, should an apple core be discarded in the wrong bin, he will fish it out and storm furiously from room to room, dangling it threateningly and demanding: "Whose is this? Whose is this?"

By contrast, Ms Ross admits that she can't get quite so agitated about the disposal of orange peel.

However, advice comes from the unlikely source of the Sun's liberal-baiter-in-chief Kelvin Mackenzie, who has chanced upon a novel method of recycling.

"I've finally found a use for the Guardian," he says. "I've been holding it over my head during showers."

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