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How To Land An Airbus A330
James May has a list of 9 things he reckons a 'chap' shd know how to do in an emergency. Only some of them have world wide relevance. For example, I don't think a NZer has a huge need to know about "How to Escape for Butlins" (Chapter 2 ) or "How to Invade and Occupy the Isle of Wight" (Chapter 6)
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Of more interest is the title chapter, How to Land An Airbus. If you watch Top Gear or saw James May's Toy Story series, you can almost hear him narrating. It's the tone of 'I know this is so unlikely as to be ridiculous, but it could happen' earnestness. He tells you what controls to pay attention to, and what to do with them (basically how to switch on the automatic controls so you don't have to do anything).
He does have an important caveat. "If air traffic control has any sense - and these people are generally selected for their intelligence and cool-headedness - they will have directed you to an airport that will allow you use the Airbus's Instrument Landing System. If you have been vectored to a remote runway where you have no choice but to land the plane manually, you may as well forget it, because, as the A330 captain consulted in the preparation of this work put it, "Everyone will be killed."
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Chapter 4 How to Deliver Twins. Remember, nature took care of childbirth, and humankind flourished, long before medical science took an interest in the problem. So don't panic....keep calm and carry on, as they used to say in the army ... everything will be fine. And apart from that, wash your hands and arms thoroughly, make sure baby doesn't come out too quickly, because things will rupture, check that umbilical isn't strangling kid. Don't slap it to start it breathing; instead tickle its spine and flick bottom of feet with fingers - that shd stimulate breathing. Now go to the pub. It's traditional.
Chapter 7 How to Prepare and Eat Your Best Mate. Introduces by pointing out that today we have multiple choices for disposing of our dead bodies: medical research, med training, organ donors - yet no mechanism allowing you to donate body for food. I mean, if yr happy to give away yr liver to be used as a liver, why shd you be opposed to having it used as pate. Not cannibalism, bc that requires killing someone for their meat. Correct scientific term is 'interspecific necrophagy', which somehow doesn't sound so bad.
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Then he gets down to detail. If you're caught in a situation where nothing else to eat, how long wd you survive? An 80kg man wd supply about 30% meat, ie abt 24 kg (rest is bone and assuming offal is off-limits, unless yr French). That shd keep you going for about a month eating 2500 calories a day, but since you don't know how long you need, you can probably stretch it out for twice that. The main advantage of a human is the long legs and arms, which make it easy to butcher. The main advantage of a pig is that you didn't go to school with it.
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