I still remember the first time that I ever listened to 'Hitchiker's Guide To The Galaxy'. No, I didn't have the good fortune to hear it on the radio. No, I was lucky enough to have people read it to me (I was very young at the time). I remember almost dying of laughter over the course of the first few pages.
Ever since then, a small portion of my appreciation for Douglas' work has grown into a near obsession. I've read all of his books (including the Dirk Gentley stories, The Meaning Of Liff, and Last Chance To See), seen the Mini-Series, and snagged a copy of the original radio scripts from my local library (which reminds me, it's due back tomorrow). His books have helped me to laugh at life. I've always known that laughter was the cure to most situations, but never really knew how to express that. The Hitchiker's stories have given me a vent to laugh through, and helped me to get through some of the most depressing, sad, and boring parts of my life.
When you read something by Douglas Adams, you don't just get a story thrown together by an author who just wants to make a buck, as is the unfortunate case with many somewhat talented authors these days. No, you get good quality entertainment, masterfully pieced together as a work of art. I'm sure that making money probably factored in Douglas' pursuit of book writing, but that was merely a fringe benefit.
I thought about doing something dramatic as an obituary to one of the last great comic geniuses of our era. I considered throwing together a tribue to Douglas Adams by writing new lyrics for Don McLean's 'American Pie.' Everything in it sounded wrong, forced, and innapropriate for the situation. I considered drawing something, but dismissed it instantly as I am quite possibly one of the top fifty most terrible artists in the entire western world. I even considered doing nothing and letting everyone else's stories speak for themselves, but I just couldn't let anything like this go.
It's an interesting thing. Nothing I type seems to be adequate for the situation. I'm sure Douglas could've thought of something to put here, that might even make someone's recent demise comic. He had a way with words:
'They hung in the air in exactly the way that bricks don't.'
You know exactly what he's trying to say when he says it. As a result, he has rightfully earned a place at the top of the list of authors in today's book stores, coffee shops, and other such areas.
I don't know what I can really say about Douglas Adams that won't have already been side time and time again over the past few days. So, I'll just say farewell to Douglas Adams. We're all really gonna miss him.