By JONAS WHALE
DALIAN (China Daily Show) — There was an unexpected extra in Liu Xinpeng’s fishing net last week. A long day’s trawl off the coast of Dalian accidentally landed the unsuspecting skipper with the solution to one of mankind’s most abiding myths: the mermaid.
Along with the usual haul of mackerel, Li and his crew were amazed to find the stunned — but still alive — creature thrashing about at the bottom. The mythical half-woman, half-fish had apparently been snared unawares while relaxing in the warm tropical waters.
“She was dazed, and in her confusion dropped a mother-of-pearl comb, which later fetched a very decent price at market,” Liu told a China Daily Show reporter. “We were amazed by her large, naked breasts. Later, much later in fact, we noticed she had a long, silvery fishtail.
“I knew immediately there was enough food on her to last a month.”
After exchanging a few sentences with the mermaid, which apparently included the information that her name was Krill, and she was the 3,600-year-old last descendant of her kind, Li’s crew set about gutting and butchering the semi-piscine creature, long considered extinct.
Naturalists expressed amazement at the find.
“If the story is true, this is possibly one of the biggest upsets in recent scientific history and will completely rewrite our understanding of evolution, as well as provide research grants and new funding for hundreds of important biological endeavors,” Yale University’s Marine Biology Professor Davis Williams, who was unaware of the mermaid’s fate, told China Daily Show.
“As a side-effect, it might even encourage a new understanding of the importance of ecological protection laws.” Such laws may have prevented the discovery, last year, of Bigfoot on a Chinese menu.
“Anyone was says mermaids aren’t real can ask my wife and daughter,” chuckled Liu, as he chewed thoughtfully on a mer-rib. “They’ve been dining on one for the last week!”
Liu said he plans to sell the mermaid’s remains to a local museum, which will make a plaster cast of the skeleton and cover it with a plastic mould, before painting and displaying the result, and disposing of the bones in a nourishing medicinal soup.
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