How To Do (Almost) Everything

1Check your engine oil

  • Park your car on flat terrain and turn off the engine.
  • Wait a couple of minutes for the oil to settle.
  • Open the bonnet and locate the engine’s dipstick. You can identify this easily, as it will have some kind of small handle and will be near the engine.
  • Remove the dipstick and wipe it clean with a lint-free rag.
  • Fully insert the dipstick back into its tube for three seconds.
  • Remove it again and look for the markers near the bottom of the dipstick.
  • In between these markers will be fresh oil. This indicates your current engine oil level.
  • The oil level mustn’t be below the minimum mark or above the maximum level.
  • If necessary, top up the engine with the correct grade oil.
  • Recheck the oil level and refit the dipstick.
  • If you have topped up your oil, ensure that the oil filler cap is put back on securely.

2Find south at night

1 | Look for two very bright stars, one above the other, in the Milky Way near the horizon. These are The Pointers.
2 | Above them, lying on its side, is the kiteshaped, four-starred
Southern Cross.
3 | To find due south, draw two imaginary lines: one from midway between The Pointers at a right angle, the other from the top of the cross to the bottom,
extended until it meets the line from between The Pointers.
4 | The meeting point of these lines is the South Celestial Pole.
5 | Locate south by dropping a vertical line to the horizon.

Drop into an AA Auto Service and Repair to have your oil checked and changed.

3Give a toast

  • Write, memorise and rehearse the speech before the event. On the day, don’t drink so much that you forget it.
  • Wait until everyone has a drink before you begin your toast.
  • Stand up while giving the toast, even if it’s

just six of you around a dinner table.

  • Hold a glass at the ready, but don’t raise it until the last sentence of the toast.
  • Face the person or group being honoured by the toast. Project your voice and don’t rush through it.
  • Raise your glass and

finish the toast with a closing sentiment, for example: “Here’s to your retirement. May you never be woken by an alarm clock again”.

  • Punctuate the toast by taking a sip of your drink, which is a signal for other guests to do the same.

4Make a proper cup of tea

  • Boil fresh water in the jug.
  • Warm the teapot by swirling a little boiled water around inside before pouring it out.
  • Add one teaspoon of loose tea leaves per cup, plus one extra for the pot.
  • Pour the just-off boiling water into your teapot and let the tea steep. Allow about one minute for green tea, three to six minutes for black tea, 10 to 12 minutes for herbal teas. If you like your tea strong, add more tea leaves rather than letting it stew for longer.
  • If it’s white tea you’re preparing, splash a little milk into cups.
  • Use a tea strainer to catch the leaves, as you pour the tea.
  • Take your cup of tea and a biscuit or two into the sunshine to enjoy

5Boil an egg

  • If the egg has come from the fridge, let it warm to room temperature. Very cold eggs crack in hot water.
  • Carefully place the egg in a small saucepan of cold water and cover with a lid.
  • Bring the water to a gentle simmer before turning the heat off.
  • For a soft-boiled egg with a runny yolk, leave the egg in the water for one minute, then lift out and place in an egg cup. Eat with buttered toast soldiers for optimum deliciousness.
  • For a picnic-ready, hard-boiled egg, leave it in the water for five minutes, lift out, and peel once cold.


1 | Put the ball in the tee or use your boot heel to make a pivot.
2 | Aim the ball by leaning it towards the goalposts at a 45° angle, with the seams facing out.
3 | Take three long steps backwards away from the ball. Check you’re still lined up with the ball. Take two steps to your left or right (your preference) and aim for a specific target between the posts.
4 | Focus your energy into your kicking foot by swinging your arms into a clap. If you ever wondered why
the pros clap before kicking, this is what they are doing.
5 | Begin approach. You should run the same number of steps you took away from the ball and follow the same path you marked out. This will see you curl into the ball.
6 | As you near the ball, position your non-kicking foot as close to the tee as possible, making sure your head is directly over the ball and your shoulders are facing the posts. Shift your weight onto this foot as you swing
your kicking foot into the ball.
7 | As you curve in to the ball, you will generate more power and be in an optimum position to strike the ball with your kicking foot. You want to kick the ball with the area between your ankle and your instep. A rugby ball’s ‘sweet spot’ is roughly a third up from the tee.
8 | Follow through with your foot once you’ve kicked the ball. In other words, keep your leg swinging.
9 | Celebrate your glorious conversion!

7Juggle three balls

8Correctly use a semicolon

  • Use a semicolon to join two independent, but related clauses together. For example: “I’m going to Wellington next week; I hope I see a Hobbit.”
  • Semicolons are also used to break up a complicated and lengthy list. For example: “For the party I need you to buy candles, the kind you stick in cakes; sausage rolls, which will be in the frozen section; white bread, and hundreds and thousands for fairy bread; and four bottles of wine.”

9Resuscitate someone

1 | Lay the person on their back.
2 | Tilt their head back and lift the chin.
3 | Look for normal breathing.
4 | Place your hands in the centre of the chest. Push down hard 30 times then give two breaths mouth to mouth.
5 | Continue this cycle of compression and breaths until you save their life and become a hero.
6 Download the St John NZ CPR app to your iPhone in case you forget!

10Make peanut butter

1 | Unless they are pre-roasted, bake two cups of shelled peanuts in the oven for six to eight minutes at 180°c, shaking every so often so they don’t burn.
2 | Pour the peanuts into a food processor
with 1 ½ tablespoons of vegetable oil (not olive oil, as this will make it taste funny).
3 | Blend the peanuts until they reach the desired consistency.
4 | Add a little brown sugar or honey, and salt to taste.
5 | Spoon the peanut butter into an airtight container and refrigerate. It should last up to two months in the fridge, unless you eat it all straight away.
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