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Scientists predict that by the year 2020, 84% of all published books will use the 100 Sites You Must Dive Before You Die format. However, in a conspiracy bigger than the one which convinced you that your haircut is acceptable, these volumes are merely filled with vast blabbering tracts regarding scuba-diving or something or other, leaving the public (ie. you, your hoodlum friends, your heathen cohorts and your ugly children) with a horrifying shortage of infofactation on the bit about dying.

Let's face it: diving's easy. Inexplicably, this is not the first thing that every child is taught at school. Nevertheless, diving's so easy that many people are able to dive perfectly well and yet have only the flimsiest of insights into the fundamental concepts underlying quantum mechanics. It's so easy that some divers are the sort of people that eat cornflakes and crisps for almost every meal: in other words, diving's so easy that I can do it.

But luckily for this column: that's not all. Diving by its very nature is almost always spectacular. After all, underwater is where things like sharks, whales, bits of missing people and shipwrecks hang out on a regular basis and these things are all quite interesting, certainly more interesting than life above water, 97% of which involves paperwork; doing things like going to the Post Office; contemplating the origins of certain shapes of pasta; contemplating the feasibility of various other shapes of pasta; or reading books commanding you to do stuff upon pain of death.

So, if finding Sites You Must Dive is easy, then why is the Before You Die part of the equation (a crap equation since it contains only one number and no adding up) neglected so badly that even now it's wandering aimlessly around, picking its nose at will and breaking that window over there? The answer to that is for historians to debate (although like everything that is bad, it probably has something to do with spiders), but fortunately the time for weeping is now over and life can cease to hinder your trivial ambitions. That's right. In yet another of a startling string of London Diver Magazine exclusives, Rob continues his good / genocidal work of righting all that is wrong with this definitive

Top Ten Bestest Ways to Die before you Dive:

1. Inflate your BCD so much that your chest is crushed as you are about to enter the water. Requires especially small BCD and invasively helpful crewhand on the dive deck.

2. Replace the oxygen in your closed-circuit rebreather with pure sulphuric acid and the diluent with mustard gas, then pre-breathe the mixture for ten minutes before the dive.
3. Go back in time and solve the Jack the Ripper murders. Ask the culprit to be your dive buddy and then, during the pre-dive safety check, offer to have sex with him for money.

4. As you leap out of an aircraft, realise you've confused scuba-diving with skydiving. Orally inflate your BCD on the way down for comic effect.

5. Attempt to procure an air-fill using badly forged diving credentials. When your papers fail to stand up to inspection and your qualifications come under interrogation, avoid leaking any information by taking a cyanide pill.

6. Hack off an arm and use your own blood as chum for sharks. This approach may take longer at Wraysbury than off South Africa's Seal Island, but perseverance is the key; if the sharks are slow to come, simply keep removing limbs (at some point you will start requiring help with this).

7. Accidentally board the wrong flight at the airport so that instead of disembarking at Sharm you find yourself on a rocket destined for the centre of the sun.

8. As you head to the dive site, sacrifice your reproductive organs in order to perform an important and thought-provoking demonstration of the dangers of dangling your genitalia in the propeller of a RIB. In order to compound the learning experience, interrupt the ensuing Q&A session with a further demonstration using your head.

9. Inform the police of a suspected terrorist cell operating in your area and whilst providing details of the leader, accidentally send them your own vital statistics and holiday snaps. When you're certain of being under close surveillance from an armed unit, begin preparations for your dive by donning your BCD and tank at home and then running down your street towards a congregation of civilians whilst screaming in Arabic.

10. Misinterpret the tide tables as being lists of dates rather than times and turn up at Stoney Cove in the year 1412. Almost manage to convey the concept of scuba diving to the Witchfinder General but ultimately fail to explain what possible relevance tides might have to an inland dive site and get burned at the stake.

In the unlikely event that you can't manage any of these and, bowing to the pressures of cliché, opt for a road traffic accident or myocardial infarction instead, try to at least do so whilst backward-rolling into a puddle or attaching a catheter to yourself in your drysuit.
Dive Worldwide
Oh, and as for diving, apparently the Great Barrier Reef is quite good. It's in Australia.
Adventure Divers La Manga

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