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BRIAN SOUTER'S so-called Section 28 referendum looks like a dead duck.

Before you bin that ballot paper, you might as well have some fun with it.

Origami expert Isaac McHale took us through the stages of turning the paper into something far more interesting than the bumph which millions of Scots have already received through their letter-boxes.

So we urge you not to chuck the forms in the bin, because that would be a great waste.

Instead, why not use them to make yourself a symbolic dead duck, as a lasting tribute to the amateurish pounds 1million poll. Voters have until May 22 to give the "referendum" their considered attention before returning it in the convenient pre-paid envelope.

But by using our step-by-step guide, you will have some fun tinkering with the ancient Japanese art of origami.

And, at the same time, you can use your dead duck to show Mr Souter what you really think of his campaign.

IT'S A QUACKER .. how to use the Section 28 ballot paper

1 TAKE the ballot paper and make a square by folding the top corner of the sheet down to meet the edge of the page. Fold bottom remaining paper over and crease firmly along the line. Tear creased section off to leave a square, which must be perfect. Turn sheet so the writing is face down - blank side upward. Fold edges on either side of crease in to touch the diagonal, like a paper airplane. Turn over and fold central line back on itself. Open up again.

2 FOLD outside tips two thirds of the way in towards central line on the back, angle them slightly towards the longer, thin end which will become the neck. Fold shape in half along creased line, making sure both edges are symetrical when closed. At this stage, the spine (closed, folded edge) of the bird should be to the top. Gently fold, but don't crease, long pointed edge up vertically and shape to make the neck of the bird.

3 MAKE the tail by opening out the base of the bird and folding the point roughly 1cm beyond the half-way or central point of your creation. Then fold it back on to itself, leaving a tip overhang of about 2cms, which will form the tail tip of the duck. Make a firm crease.

4 PRESS closed and the tail will stick out. Now fold down the two flaps next to the tail to make the wings. Very gently push the points back again slightly to make wings stand out from the body of the bird.

5 TAKE the neck of the bird and fold forward - in the same fashion as when making the neck itself - to create the head. Again, gently does it. Take the bill and make an up-and-under fold, similar to one section of a ladies' fan. This stage is very much the same as the tail-making process. Crease the head firmly into place. Hold at base of beak and squeeze between your fingers to flatten. Your dead duck should now be complete. Now it's much more useful than the hopeless referendum.
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Author:Findlay, Jane
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:May 7, 2000
Previous Article:Pain and grief that the campaign has ignored.
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