2525: Air Travel Packing List
|Air Travel Packing List|
Title text: I know the etiquette is controversial, but I think it's rude when the person in front of me reclines their seat into the bell of my trumpet.
| This explanation may be incomplete or incorrect: Created by an TRUMPETBORNE PARACHUTER - Please change this comment when editing this page. Do NOT delete this tag too soon.|
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This comic is about a proposed air-travel packing list, and the humor is that many people who have not been flying during Covid might have forgotten what to pack. Most of the items are already found on the plane, SOUND like they would be useful on a plane, or could be useful in (the unlikely event of) a plane crash. Here is a quick summary of each:
|Seat cushion||This can be used as a flotation device in a crash and is provided by the airline. Some people may also bring their own cushions for comfort.|
|Parachute||Parachutes are normally used to slow down your falling out of the sky to a relatively safe speed in case of a severe problem with your aircraft, and are routinely used as a safety device by (para)glider pilots, test pilots, military aircraft crew and in similar situations when being unable to land safely is a significant concern. A parachute won't be very useful in a typical passenger airplane (even a small one) as there is no way to safely exit such a plane in-flight. Even the airplanes used to voluntarily exit from while they're perfectly good (as some crazy people do) need to be specifically designed or modified for the purpose such as having wide sliding doors that are unaffected by airflow. However, there were single cases of people being ejected or sucked out of a passenger airplane; in such case a parachute could by arguably useful. Famously, D.B. Cooper jumped from an airplane in-flight with a parachute.|
|Wing glue||Probably to repair wings in the event of damage, potentially in a crash. Would be tricky (but not necessarily impossible) to apply mid-flight. This the first of several items that are potentially useful to the flight crew or maintenance teams, but would not be useful or appropriate for passengers to bring aboard.|
|Air horn||An air horn uses compressed air to make a very loud noise very easily. This may be important for drawing attention to yourself in the event of a crash. Typically, emergency lifejackets on a plane are provided with a light and whistle for this purpose. The noise of an air horn might prove more effective for this purpose than a whistle, but it would become useless as soon as the compressed air ran out. Its inclusion is probably meant to suggest that the word 'air' in its name indicates that it's designed for use in an aircraft. Using one in a non-emergency situation would infuriate everyone else on the plane.|
|Sextant||In combination with star charts, a sextant can be used to determine your position based on the location of stars in the night sky. Alternately, in combination with an accurate clock, a sextant can be used to determine the position of the sun relative to the aircraft to determine the vehicle's position. In a crash, you could use this to find your way to a safe place, but sextants are rarely used, and most people not trained on how to operate one. GPS will also allow you to find your position, is built into many phones, and is faster and easier to use than a sextant. If you've got a homing beacon, it probably makes more sense to just activate that and wait for help to arrive. Until the early 1980s, long-range airplanes had a flight navigator that used sextants and celestial navigation to determine the position of the airplane.|
|Nose plugs and goggles for pressure||Nose plugs and goggles are commonly used in swimming but would be useless for dealing with cabin pressurization or depressurization. Since your mouth and nose are interconnected, nose plugs would be useless on their own. Trying to hold your breath in a sudden depressurization event will cause lung damage, so nose plugs wouldn't be a good thing, even if you could also seal off your mouth. Goggles would also not be useful. During depressurization, the air would just seep out. During pressurization, they would just become uncomfortable and difficult to remove.|
|Airplane shoes||Airlines typically don't require use of special footwear for passengers, nor do they provide special shoes. Before emergency egress, certain shoes (like high heels) must be discarded, though. Air crew are also prohibited from wearing such shoes.|
|Navigation crystal||Mystical form of navigation, presumably either to help with navigating airplane or to help you get home after a crash.
Crystals that polarize light can be used as a compass .
|Spare batteries in case the plane runs out||Airplanes will generally use more power than any battery small enough to be easily packed in a bag can provide. They will generally use either 115V AC at 400Hz or 28V DC, both of which are very uncommon outside of aviation. The plane will almost never use its own batteries in-flight anyway, getting its electric power from the main engines, the APU, or, in emergencies, the ram air turbine or similar generating device. The batteries are generally only used on the ground when the engines are not running.|
|Birdseed||So one can attract birds. In practice, this wouldn't work for multiple reasons (high speed, altitude and windows being sealed being among most obvious ones) and would pose a significant hazard of birds getting stuck in an engine if it did. On the other hand, spreading birdseed before boarding would be seen as misconduct by airport authorities, as it may pose a danger to aircraft by attracting birds. Alternatively, birdseed can be used to attract birds after surviving a crash, e.g. to catch them for food.|
|Homing beacon||Once activated, a homing beacon will send out a continuous radio signal so that rescuers can find your location. These can be very useful in a plane crash, but airplanes already carry them (Emergency position-indicating radiobeacons), so you don't need to pack one yourself. Incidentally, the COSPAS-SARSAT system for locating distressed airplanes and ships was a cooperation started by the United States and the Soviet Union, and it was an elegant and simple solution that uses the Doppler effect of radio signals for accurate location - long before the Global Positioning System.|
|Meteorite antidote||Meteorites are pieces of space rocks that make it all the way to the ground. They can cause injury but they aren't poisonous, so an antidote would not help.|
|USB wing connector||this is a just a wire connector, but because it has wing in the name is on the list. alternatively, the plane wings connect by USB, and this can be used to reattach wings. Airplanes rather use the ARINC 429 protocol instead of USB protocols to facilitate electronic communication between flight computers and the engines, for example.|
|Emergency siren||USE IN CASE OF EMERGENCY|
|Spare flaps||Flaps can be moved to adjust the lift/drag ratio of a wing, generally during takeoff and landing. Flaps are very large and mounted on the wing, outside the passenger compartment, so bringing spares would be very difficult and completely useless. Flaps failing to come down can also usually be remedied by just landing at a longer runway.|
|Mouthpiece (pandemic restriction; airlines still provide the trumpet)||A part of a brass instrument like a trumpet. Randall jokes that trumpets are provided on airplanes (which would be very obnoxious to other passengers), but due to the pandemic you cannot use a shared mouthpiece.|
|Luggage ballast||Likely to make plane more balanced. While balancing weight in a plane is indeed a real problem, it's solved by rearranging luggage and adjusting engine power slightly. Introducing ballast would mean additional weight for no real reason.|
|Flag (international flights)||To identify your country of origin. Other flags are also used to communicate between boats without electricity, in the event the boats are in distress, so they could be used in the event of a crash.|
|Decoy tickets||Maybe these would used as a distraction so you can sneak onto the plane without paying.|
|Keys to the plane||Though some pushed for it after a plane was stolen in the 2018 Horizon Air Q400 incident, planes do not require keys to activate like a car does. Likewise, plane doors are not locked with a key. Instead, they are rather sealed - if a seal is broken, the plane is thoroughly checked for any wrongdoing.|
|This transcript is incomplete. Please help editing it! Thanks.|
Air Travel Packing List
If you haven't flown in a while, you might not remember what you need to bring. Use this handy checklist to pack!
[Two columns of lists of items. Each item is preceded by a checkbox.]
- Seat cushion
- Wing glue
- Air horn
- Nose plugs and goggles for pressure
- Airplane shoes
- Navigation crystal
- Spare batteries in case the plane runs out
- Homing beacon
- Meteorite antidote
- USB wing connector
- Emergency siren
- Spare flaps
- Mouthpiece (pandemic restriction; airlines still provide the trumpet)
- Luggage ballast
- Flag (international flights)
- Decoy tickets
- Keys to the plane
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