Monday, 26 May 2014

Douglas Adams - re-post






I am confident that should you ask Marvin what his thoughts regarding this article were his response, possibly much like your own, might be: ‘What’s the point?’ But then again, having had the opportunity to read the trilogy in four parts I already know the answer which of course is forty two. It was a lesson that Arthur Dent found confusing as did Ford Prefect but I, and millions like me, got it. I mean it is obvious innit? Ask Slartibartfast if you don’t believe me.


Life is like that though, funny at times but frankly never quite as amusing as Douglas Adams classic “Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy”; nowhere near as giggle making as “The Restaurant at the End of the Universe”; not as hysterical as “Life, The Universe and Everything” and nowhere near as banana skin on the stairs laugh-out-loud as “So Long and Thanks for all the Fish.” He described the books as being a trilogy in four parts which confused many a parent of a certain vintage but also proved to be doubly inaccurate when he published the fifth book, “Mostly Harmless” in nineteen ninety two.

The man oozed ability, dribbled talent and then splashed it all over the walls of conventional comedic writing like a vomit of vaudeville. He was quite good.

The thing that really infuriates me though is that Adam’s, now settled down on some passing Dark Star where he moved to on the eleventh of May two thousand and one, was born just two years before me in nineteen fifty two. By the time I was twenty five and four years married, he had, at only twenty seven, written the original radio series in nineteen seventy eight for Hitch Hikers but not only that had also worked on Monty Python and TV time traveller Doctor Who shows. Such talent should be brought to the attention of the Vogons so that they could compose some more moribund poetry the better to drive us all mad with.

Adams, or Douglas Noel Adams to give the man his full entitlement, pedigree and full length feature name, was born on 11th March nineteen fifty two. Not on a distant planet orbiting a distant sun in a far flung corner of the universe but in Cambridge. His parents moved to Islington which, incidentally, isn’t the East End of London but North and when time came for Adams to be educated he attended a school in Brentwood much to the joy of Essex people who now claim him as one of theirs. He isn’t.

Another bone I have to pick with Douglas is the fact he has sold fifteen million of his novels worldwide. Isn’t having genius not enough, did he have to rub all budding wannabe writers noses in the primordial soup with his incredible success? Not only has the Hitch Hikers series gone on to become recognised works of literature but the terms and expressions from his works have made their way into everyday life. He, along with Terry Pratchett and possibly that new girl on the block, J.K.Rowling, have shown the world what great a force British fiction is. As for Shakespeare?

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. . . iT MUsT bE fORtY tWO.

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