Pre-Flight Checklist: Remove Cat

Via the Guardian:

A cat has escaped with at least one of its nine lives after stowing away on an ultra-light aircraft flight. A video has been posted on YouTube of the cat digging its claws into the aircraft’s wing as its pilot and passenger fly hundreds of feet above the ground at first apparently unaware of its presence. Romain Jantot, understood to be the pilot in the clip, cites a flying club in Kourou, French Guiana, in the film’s description. “A standard flight until … I still don’t know if it got in after the pre-flight check or if I missed it,” he says. “The cat is doing well, she is still our mascot.” All appears well and cat-free as the aircraft accelerates on the runway and begins its takeoff. But about 38 seconds into the clip, the cat slowly creeps into view under the plane’s left wing, making its way towards the pilot and passenger with a sinister slow crawl. Just after a minute has passed, the pilot’s shock is clear as he notices the windswept stowaway. Never before has a man’s face said “there’s a cat on the wing of my plane” with such unequivocal clarity.

Over 7M views already. The pilot’s double-take is great.

  • Gene

    I want this cat.
    THAT was the coolest thing EVER!

    • Prixator

      Me, too! Others say that the cat looked terrified, but I thought she looked a bit pissed because of the air flow (and maybe from being disturbed from a nice snooze). My experience with cats has taught me that they don’t care for wind on their faces and especially in their ears. So the best way to get them to leave you alone (if you really need to) is to blow on them – and aim for the ears!

  • DaddyRay

    Nearly a Cat–astrophe

    • Gene

      yes….he was nearly cat-atonic with fright when he saw the flying feline.

    • it’s its

      Roamin’ Catlick.

    • The-Noodle-Almighty

      That deserves an award.

      • DaddyRay

        I would like to thank the ass-atomy …

      • JCF

        ^ I certainly hope that’s Photoshopped!

  • Michael Rush

    feline the friendly skies .

  • DaddyRay

    Be careful as items may have shifted during flight in the overhead compartment

  • TommyTune

    As a cat lover/owner I could hardly watch. I’m glad the poor little critter made it out alive.

    • DaddyRay

      It is the only reason I can joke about it now, if the poor kitty didn’t make it safely then I would not be so flip.

    • Mary Ann

      This cat looks so much like my Ranger, and this is just something he would do. It’s amazing that this cat rode it out as calmly as it did.

      • clay

        calm and fried often have the same expression.

    • Todd Allis

      As one owned by cats, I figured the cat would probably be fine.

  • Webslinger

    I swear I was only napping for a minute and now look at my day…

  • DaddyRay

    That was a Purrrr-fect landing

  • DaddyRay

    I kept wondering why the lady in the passenger seat didn’t try and grab the cat but seeing the end where the cat jumped out I think maybe it was the right decision

    • joeyj1220

      I thought the same thing too… when she sees the cat she is all giggles and smiles. As a cat lover, I’d be freaking out

    • motordog

      I considered this too…but perhaps reaching/grabbing for the cat might have spooked her and caused her to slip off the plane (the cat, not the lady). I think they did the right thing, seeing as the cat looked pretty secure where she was (at least for that moment).

  • nowaRINO
    • another_steve

      ^^ Worse. Gremlin. Ever.

      As you’d expect, there are Internet boards dedicated to discussing classic Twilight Zone (as well as the several largely unsuccessful revivals that were attempted), and the gremlin in this episode is always universally derided.

      I mean… we all wore Halloween costumes as kids that were more convincing than that gremlin.

      • sdnative1958

        Television codes – didn’t want to scare the kiddies too much, ya know. And Shatners’ salary as he chewed the scenery…

      • TKW

        I disagree. At the time this was very scary. It still gives me the willies.

        • another_steve

          You want scary Twilight Zone?

          HERE’S scary.

          (from “Eye of the Beholder”)

          • TKW

            Yup same artist. Scared the bejeebuz out of me. Still does. This was the episode with Ellie May Clampett in it. Another favorite.

          • another_steve

            You may know… but Donna Douglas (“Ellie May”) died this past January at the age of 82.

    • lymis

      Oddly, this role was one of the things that was credited with landing him the Star Trek role.

    • ISTlife

      I loved 3rd Rock From The Sun, and LOL’d when John Lithgows’ character travels by air and screams “theres something on the wing!” (in a nod to the movie). And when Shatners character (The Big Giant Head) also states to Lithgow that he once saw something strange on the wing of his plane. (nod to this above). It seemed like most in the studio audience didn’t get it, or maybe it was just a non-enthusiastic laugh track 😉

  • Bj Lincoln

    Hey! Can’t you see I was taking a nap! Humans!

  • canoebum

    Good pilot. Very serene and calm about the whole incident. He saved the cat’s life.

  • pablo

    L’ homme et le chat sont mignon.

  • another_steve

    A bit of healthy cynicism is always in order when watching YouTube videos like this one. Some people just want 4M views and will contrive whatever it takes.

    What indicators are there suggesting that this is/was absolutely real and unplanned?

    • DumbHairyApe

      I do find it hard to believe that any pilot who might check their aircraft before departure would miss this kitty through,what appears to be a transluscent fabric material.

      BUT, who in their right mind would allow their pet to take such a trip? It could have been death for the kitty.

      • LeftyNYC

        I understand your skepticism, but it seems clear that she was a paying customer who hired this pilot. I’d assume the company makes a video available for purchase. Thus, the shot features her in the center, with a bit of her surroundings visible.

    • Duh-David

      Nightly news last night pointed out that a professional cinematographer couldn’t have framed the shot any better. Why isn’t the camera centered on the cockpit?

      • TheManicMechanic

        Look carefully to the pilot’s right. The aircraft is more enclosed on that side versus the passenger’s side. The camera is angled this way to highlight the passenger’s viewpoint and experience. Apparently this is a for-hire flight, and the video is probably part of the package.

        Okay, I need to do a bit of editing. I was shown this video earlier as an edited anigif, and it showed the craft in the air as well as a bit of both sides of the frame cropped off, and before the woman also noticed the cat.

  • GarySFBCN

    Thanks for the 2 minute smile!

  • DumbHairyApe

    “Please place your cats in the overhead compartments”.

    Seriously though, Vorpal, did you have anything to do with this?

  • bambinoitaliano

    I haz furst klass tikit!!

    • I believe the preferred usage is “I can haz,” no?

      • JCF

        “Furst klass tikit: can haz?”

        That’s the tikit.

  • Queequeg

    Poor cat must have been terrified. I’m glad he was able to hang on. In the woman’s place, I would probably have tried to grab him, but that could have been a disaster. The pilot and passenger kept their composure, which turned out well.

    • Mary Ann

      She was smart not to have grabbed him

      • Queequeg

        Yes, she was. Everything turned out OK in the end. It was good that neither of them panicked.

  • clay

    It ends sooooo much better than “kitty napping on the engine block”.

  • Eebadee-eebadee-thatsallfolks

    Not all teh kittehs work on the web. Some work in aviation and even in pest control.

  • KaBoomBOX

    The skeptic in me wonders at how the camera was at just the right angle to include the pilot, passenger and the wing section with the “stowaway”?

    • Queequeg

      I have to admit to having the same thought.

    • Stev84

      Looks like it is mounted in the center of the aircraft but angled to have the passenger in the center of the picture. Which makes sense for a business renting out joy rides.

      • Neil

        It’s a very considerate business, since it also seems to ensure that clouds passing over the plane’s overhead canopy don’t appear through the passenger-side window!

    • thinkplease99

      It looked staged to me. He kept shifting his eyes early on, in a way that looked fishy.

  • lymis

    While I freely admit I wasn’t paying a lot of attention, the first few news reports on this that I saw left me with the impression that this all happened on a commercial airliner. This makes a lot more sense now.

  • Captain Jack

    I ain’t afraid to take a ride in a stinking glider Cats rule !

  • Alex in Idaho

    Kitty starts yowling at 1:05. I would, too.

  • jomicur

    I’ve always known cats are psychic. Didn’t realize they can fly, too.

  • KnownDonorDad

    Double-Take at 300 Feet

  • neonzx

    Pretty sure that is the pilot’s cat. He didn’t even wait for the plane to completely stop before unbuckling himself and hopping out to rescue.

  • TheManicMechanic

    I have a feeling the pilot got an extra tip to put in his kitty.

  • Steven Leahy

    He was holding on tightly! LOL

  • Steven Leahy

    He probably hitches rides on cars all the time, just didn’t expect to see that thing go aloft!

  • Happy Dance

    OMG first off, no way would I ever be on a contraption like that…must have windows and doors and convenient little bottles of alcohol that smiley people bring to me……poor kitty!

  • David Kerlick

    At least it was near the center of gravity..

  • StevenMN

    I’m so happy the kitty landed safely. It could have been catastrophic!

  • Rrhain

    The cat had the presence of mind to wait for the plane to come to a full and complete stop before disembarking.

    The pilot, on the other hand….