brodiebrazil
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Pilots... Your Superstitions

Tue Nov 30, 2004 4:53 pm

As a pilot there are a few weird superstitions I have each time I fly. For example I like to take the same driving route to the base airport, also i like to call out (usually to myself) v1 and v2 on takeoff roll. What are your unique superstitions about flying?
 
regional757
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Joined: Tue May 04, 2004 11:15 pm

RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Tue Nov 30, 2004 5:35 pm

I never go up flying without saying a quick prayer first in front of the plane I'm taking up. I'm not super religious but I figure every little thing helps.
 
flyer737sw
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Tue Nov 30, 2004 6:21 pm

Not really superstitious...Just make sure I go over the checklist and do the proper procedures...
 
Airbus_A340
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 12:08 am

I don't really have superstitions when flying. I know it's up to the pilot to bring her back safely, however during pre-flight I like to say, under my breath, to the plane to bring me back safely.
People. They make an airline. www.cathaypacific.com
 
SlamClick
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 12:15 am

No superstitions really, but some things that almost amount to a ritual. The last thing I do at the start of the takeoff roll is tap the handle toward CLOSED on the sliding window on my side. I don't even remember the event that made me start doing that.

I've heard of a USAF F-84 pilot who, on a walkaround, would duck under the intake and exhaust. When asked he said: "Never let that engine see you! If it sees you it will kill you!" Of course it was an F-84 he was talking about!

While on active duty I carried a pair of wire cutting pliers in the cigarette pocket of my flight suit. Might have been considered a superstition but - have you ever reached for an emergency handle and found it safetied with a coat hanger?


Happiness is not seeing another trite Ste. Maarten photo all week long.
 
Buzz
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 12:27 am

Hi Brodie Brazil, Buzz here. As a bit of humor, when i was learning to fly i'd have "my lucky shop rag" tucked into my flight bag. I needed a shop rag for doing the walk around, carried the same one around all summer. So instead of a "lucky rabbit's foot", i made a joke out of it and decided on a lucky shop rag. I've since washed a bunch of them, and my landings are still good... (grin)

One habit i have so i don't get "unlucky" on high wing airplanes is to reach out and touch the trailing edge when walking from back to front. I know a few guys who have the distinctive diamond shape scar in their head from running their head into the trailing edge of a Cessna flap. I call it a "courtesy tap" - if i tap it with my finger then i won't tap it with my head. (grin)
g'day
Buzz Fuselsausge: Line Mechanic by night, DC-3 Crew Chief by choice, taildragger pilot for fun.
 
FinnWings
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 1:02 am

I don't have any superstitions rituals when I'm part of the flight crew, however always when I'm on board as a passenger I'll keep my right thumb up from the beginning of take-off run to the point when we are passing approx FL100... I don't know the reason why I'm doing that but it has been a habit for a long time...

Best Regards,
FinnWings
 
BMAbound
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 1:55 am

I usually give the baggage door on the Cessnas and Pipers I fly a tap, just a way of making sure it's closed and locked. Perhaps I'm over doing it, but hey...

Also, I always put the keys by the windshield so I am confident the ignition is not on while doing the preflight.

johan
Altitude is Insurance - Get Insured
 
buckfifty
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 3:03 am

I like to keep my jacket and shirt nicely pressed. Not a superstition, it's just so the captain won't write me up in some god forsaken report.

"Son, you ever hear of an iron? It's quite an invention."

Other than that, I always carry a Japanese lucky charm with me, and I won't talk about plane crashes in the cockpit. That's about it.
 
flyingbronco05
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 3:35 am

Before I solo, while doing the walk around, I talk to the plane. Then when I get to the nose, I rub just above the prop and say "take care of me."

Seems to work  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
Never Trust Your Fuel Gauge
 
7574EVER
Posts: 462
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 4:12 am

 Wow!

Your all nuts!

Just kidding of course.
Right rudder....Right rudder...Come on, more right rudder....Right rudder......Aw forget it, I quit!!
 
fspilot747
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 5:36 am

I always give the nosewheel a light tap/nudge with my foot after finishing preflight. I don't know if it's much of a superstition, but I don't get in the plane without doing it--mostly a habit.

Maybe I'll develop more along the way  Smile


FSP
 
DeltaGuy
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 5:41 am

Touch the nose....a time honored and easy ritual.

Also, on my nav bag, I have one of my father's nametags velcroed on the outside. It's one of his old flightsuit nametags, gold Naval Aviator wings on it, and his callsign, "Smiley" on it. He gave me that nametag when I was like 3, back when he was flying A-7 Corsairs....now the gold has worn a bit, and it looks a little tired, but I always hung on to it, and it is my little good luck charm thats always with me Big grin "Flyin against a ghost huh"  Big grin

DeltaGuy
"The cockpit, what is it?" "It's the little room in the front of the plane where the pilot sits, but that's not importan
 
NWA
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 6:52 am

I follow the checklists, so no superstitions. The checklist seems to work quite well.
23 victor, turn right heading 210, maintain 3000 till established, cleared ILS runwy 24.
 
vneplus5
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 7:25 am

For me, there are no superstitions/rituals associated with the actual act of flying. It's more to do with the non-flying aspect.

Whenever I go on a trip, I think "What if I don't return ... what will the person think when they come into my room/house to remove everything?"

I always make my bed and completely tidy my desk. Everything is sorted/filed/folded/tidied. Sometimes, if I know it will be a 'higher-risk' trip, I will write an appropriate comment on the day's page in my diary which is always left open on my desk.

That way, if I do return (100% success rate so far), it's always to a clean and tidy house with a bed that I can collapse into if I'm tired.
 
XFSUgimpLB41X
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 7:31 am

No superstitions..just routines.  Smile Keeps an order to the chaos. Get in nice and early...check in..print out my trip... check who im flying with... check my mailbox and look for the piles of jepp updates and alert bullitens.. go out to the airplane about 30 prior. Check in with the gate agent, look over the release and pull out my copy... write my usual notes on it...
Put my overnight bag in the back bin, laptop behind my seat, flight kit in its little place... sit down..adjust seat and rudder pedals...test O2 mask and radio altimeter, pull out jepps and headset...do my walk around. Come back in...intialize the FMS, load the acars, get the PDC and such, load the FMS...wait for el capitan to call for the flight deck inspection check...then off we go....
Chicks dig winglets.
 
vikkyvik
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 12:19 pm

I'm not a pilot or anything, and this isn't exactly superstition. But having been in a commercial plane crash, I look at the safety card every time I board a plane as a passenger, even if I already know where every damn door is. It doesn't really show me anything I didn't already know, but somehow it's important, because lives really are saved.

~Vik
I'm watching Jeopardy. The category is worst Madonna songs. "This one from 1987 is terrible".
 
LAXinYYZ
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 1:24 pm

I am not a pilot either, but I have a superstition, I count to 30 as soon as we start moving down the runway. A long time ago I was told that most accidents happen within 30 seconds of take off, after that we are OK, right?

I am sure this is not true, but I will still keep counting.

Chris
"Don't trust any statistic that you didn't falsify yourself"
 
OpsGuy
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 1:34 pm

While I am doing my preflight I always run my hand along the fuselage on the pilots side for good luck. I don't know why I started, but no sense in stopping now. When flying commercially I always tap the fuselage while entering the aircraft. Ironically enough, a Virgin Flight Attendant saw me doing this while I was boarding Mustang Sally and said, "Don't worry the aircraft is brand new!"
Is this the Delta House?
 
ArmitageShanks
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 2:49 pm

I always rock the wings with my hands on smaller aircraft like Cessna's or a Cub during the walk around.
 
wilco737
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 3:44 pm

hi everybody,

well, I am a pilot and I dont believe in such things! When you think about that too much then you get afraid of every flight! Just enjoy every flight and try to see it as a gift to cruise at high level with high speed from A to B  Wink/being sarcastic

I just love it and I am thankful vor every minute up there...

WILCO737
 
brodiebrazil
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 3:56 pm

opsguy, i do the same thing on commercial flights, just touch the fuselage to my right before entering the doorway.
 
707CMF
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 01, 2004 5:03 pm

When I fly solo, I always call up "Quand Annemasse, Ca leve" upon rotation.

That might sound stupid, but the one time I did not do it, I almost broke the plane !!

Cheers,

707
 
BartiniMan
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Fri Dec 03, 2004 10:46 pm

care to translate it please 707cmf

 
flyingbronco05
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sat Dec 04, 2004 12:54 am

I always rock the wings with my hands on smaller aircraft like Cessna's or a Cub during the walk around.

I do that too, but I do it to see if the wing falls off or if I can hear anything in the wings or hear the bolts/screws break or rattle.  Laugh out loud
Never Trust Your Fuel Gauge
 
fspilot747
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sat Dec 04, 2004 2:15 pm

"I do that too, but I do it to see if the wing falls off or if I can hear anything in the wings or hear the bolts/screws break or rattle."

Yeah, pretty much same reason I do that too. That'll be the day when I rock the wings and one falls off!
 
cancidas
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sat Dec 04, 2004 3:14 pm

I know a few guys who have the distinctive diamond shape scar in their head from running their head into the trailing edge of a Cessna flap.

i'm one of those guys. well, it kinda went away already, but the memory is there. anyhow, i'm not superstitous pilot. i just ahve my little quirks that lets the other guys on the line call me wierd. firstly, i never fold my charts properly, meaning i never close them. the NY sectional and TAC are always left folded with my regular stomping grounds out on top. second, no hat during preflight (to avoid the flap rash). third, my flying hat goes with me in ever cockpit, regardless of what seat i'm in.


Touch the nose....a time honored and easy ritual.

do that to the RJs i service. once i'm done with hooking up the towbar and climb out of the nosewheel well that's that last thing i do before walking away.

[Edited 2004-12-04 07:18:30]
"...cannot the kingdom of salvation take me home."
 
CalPilot17
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sun Dec 05, 2004 5:55 am

I raise the gear lever on the ground to see if the squat switch works.
Gear Down For max career Advancment
 
APFPilot1985
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sun Dec 05, 2004 9:21 am

Well, I always say the checklists out loud to myself and I also like to make all the callouts to myself out loud even when im solo. I also avoid "being" with a girl on a day that i am flying
Stand Up and Be Counted Visit Site Related to Voice your opinion
 
cancidas
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sun Dec 05, 2004 3:13 pm

I also avoid "being" with a girl on a day that i am flying...

why? you've never lived 'till you've had that! just try to explain to center why your altitude keeps deviating.
"...cannot the kingdom of salvation take me home."
 
brodiebrazil
Posts: 86
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sun Dec 05, 2004 3:22 pm

"center, i already kept it up very straight and level this morning for an hour, and now i gotta fly straight too? i'm drained!"
 
ba299
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sun Dec 05, 2004 9:01 pm

Always give the nosewheel a light tap/nudge with my foot after finishing preflight. I started on the C150 and now I keep to do that..
 
planespotting
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Tue Dec 07, 2004 1:56 am

Before my actual preflight inspection, i always do a walk around, starting on the pilots side just forward of the wing. i try to touch the airplane as many times as i can, tug on the prop a bit, make sure it doesn't fall off, tug the alternator belt, pat the leading edge of the wing a few times, kick the tires, pat the wing as i walk around it, tug on the flaps, check the cables, keep patting the aircraft as i work back to the stabilator, knock on it twice, tug on the rudder cables, and do it all again back words for the other side of the aircraft.

And whenever i get on board a commercial flight i pat the skin as i walk on board through the jetway.


i don't really consider them a superstition, but what else would you call them?
Do you like movies about gladiators?
 
jamotcx
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Tue Dec 07, 2004 2:26 am

If there isnt a defect on it, i wont take it lol.


Jamo
 
aerobalance
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Tue Dec 07, 2004 5:30 am

Kick the mains...Not too hard though, they're only Cessnas and Pipers  Big grin
"Sing a song, play guitar, make it snappy..."
 
SSTjumbo
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Tue Dec 07, 2004 7:18 am

All normal aspects of flight are sheer routine time after time for me, and I make sure of that. I guess the confidence in knowing I completed a full checklist and found no problems is superstition enough for me. I'm fully aware of the five hazardous attitudes of flying airplanes, and part of my mental checklist is asking myself, "Am I showing off, am I re-writing the rules, do I feel invunerable..." and so forth. As I say though, complete and thorough checklists will save your rear more often that not.
I don't know, so this is my signature.
 
bsergonomics
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Wed Dec 08, 2004 5:32 am

As both a passenger and pilot, I talk to the aeroplane. Because planes have souls. I figure that, if I'm nice to her, she'll be nice to me.

I talk to shoes as well, because they have soles too.
The definition of a 'Pessimist': an Optimist with experience...
 
dragogoalie
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Superstitions

Wed Dec 08, 2004 10:47 am

I dont really have any supersitions other than on stagechecks. I have a tie that someone from the Australian equivilent of the FAA sent me for allowing him to use one of my pictures in a magazine so I started wearing that for stagechecks. For every one that I wear the tie i pass, for every one that I dont, well...I dont. Other than that lots of routine. i have my own flight planning sheet that I made and I feel absolutely lost without that thing. It has everything on it from my weather briefing, take off/landing distances, ATIS codes, a place for me to write down IFR clearances, etc. Works out really well.

--dragogoalie-#88--
Formerly known as Jap. Srsly. AUSTRALIA: 2 days!
 
fly727
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Thu Dec 09, 2004 3:26 pm

Not really superstitions, but every time I remember them, I do the following:

When on the job: Tap the aircraft when I board it. After opening the oxygen bottle I make sure there is flow by opening any O2 station. Even when it is not a specific item in my walk-around nor is in the manuals I double check the static ports.

When flying small ones for fun: Just make damn sure I feel comfortable in the airplane and with my flying plans; that is, that I am happy with the WX, that I have enough time, etc. I do not let anything to rush me and make me more prone to mistakes.

I also rock the wings from the tips but not before collecting a sample of the fuel. After rocking them I drain it once again. You guys do it and will be shocked to see all the sediments and even water that will be collected after being supposedly drained.

Keep the blue side up.
RM  Smile
There are no stupid questions... just stupid people!
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Thu Dec 09, 2004 8:45 pm

I know a Pilot that Prior to his First Flight would enter the NWW of the B737 & say a prayer that lasted 3-4 minutes.
[During that time once the F/O pressed the Grd Call horn] Smile
Another Pilot used to start his walk around preflight check with a tap on the Radome Rh side keeping his hand there for a second before proceeding further.
regds
MEL
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
dragogoalie
Posts: 1172
Joined: Sun Oct 14, 2001 3:58 pm

Praying

Sat Dec 11, 2004 6:14 pm

hmm...is it maybe not a good sign as a passenger when you're walking out on the jetway and you see your pilot praying? Doesn't exactly instill confidence  Wink/being sarcastic

--dragogoalie-#88--
Formerly known as Jap. Srsly. AUSTRALIA: 2 days!
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sat Dec 11, 2004 8:09 pm

hmm...is it maybe not a good sign as a passenger when you're walking out on the jetway and you see your pilot praying? Doesn't exactly instill confidence
The Pax would never know,they'd probably think hes doing his Preflight check as the view to them would be partially covered.
regds
MEL
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
Santhosh
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sat Dec 11, 2004 11:45 pm

Does any one have the habit of smoking a cigarette before flying?

George
Happy Landings :)
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sun Dec 12, 2004 12:47 am

I know a few pilots that like chewing 'Gutkha' & end up clogging the boom mikes.
I know one guy that carries a small plastic case of Spices,especially cloves & cinamon & offers them to people he meets Smile
regds
MEL
I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
cedarjet
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sun Dec 12, 2004 8:32 am

I knock on the outside of the fuselage twice then pinch her skin - my thumb on the inside of the fuselage, the rest of my fingers on the outside (as though I'm checking the thickness of her skin). Like the rest of you, 100% success so far.
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
 
Santhosh
Posts: 543
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sun Dec 12, 2004 12:25 pm

I know one guy that carries a small plastic case of Spices,especially cloves & cinamon & offers them to people he meets

MEL it must be great to fly with such pilots who have that kind of a friendly nature  Smile

Regards,
George
Happy Landings :)
 
buckfifty
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sun Dec 12, 2004 3:11 pm

Does any one have the habit of smoking a cigarette before flying?

I do, but not for good luck.
 
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HAWK21M
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Sun Dec 12, 2004 6:33 pm

Where I work,Almost all Pilots have good relations with AMEs.In fact Everyday at Main base there is a Meeting with The HODs from Flt ops & Engineering to discuss the previous days snags.

We are Encouraged at Work to Communicate,it could mean any topic after Aviation related stuff have been discussed.
In fact at times we even meet out of work hrs for a snack or get together.

I have a lot of good Friends that are Pilots,as I have AME friends.Outside they all seem the same.

Just yesterday.While we were waiting for ATC clearence [long delay] prior to Pushback.I clicked a pic of the pilot near the window of the B737 from Ground with my Nokia 6230 & send it accross to him vide bluetooth.It worked cool.

We have one pilot that never leaves the Cockpit without his orange ear defenders,Once he did & was all tensed until he got it back. Smile

regds
MEL

I may not win often, but I damn well never lose!!! ;)
 
musang
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RE: Pilots... Your Superstitions

Mon Dec 13, 2004 1:42 am

I'm superstition-free also. Training, knowledge, experience, instinct, and SOPs seem to work better than calling on help from the other side...........

If all you nose-patters, plane-whisperers and skin-strokers stopped your rituals, you'd probably have bad luck, but it would be auto-suggestion!

Often wondered why people kick tyres. If one was flat, you'd see it wouldn't you?

We had an ex-Concorde pilot flying ATRs then RJ 100s with us. He made a point of taking a pee on a wheel of each new type he flew.

Regards - Musang

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