I feel an introduction is required as I am new to these pages, however I am not new to the Hitchhiker's movement and so I thought a brief explanation of how I came to be a fan was in order. It was a coming of age for me in more than one respect.
As a child my intellect was not held in high acclaim, apart from being basically introverted my reading and writing skills were very basic. I know now that this was due to a lack of engaging reading, but then the problem remained and I was labelled 'remedial'.
The system in my school for 'reading hour' was a colour coding of books akin to colours of the rainbow. It was dictated (from on high) that you read three books of the 'red' shelf before moving to the orange, then yellow, etc. The hardest books were 'violet' and considered to be above even the brightest of children there present.
On one afternoon I was sent to find a 'red' book to read, all of which I had thumbed through and found overwhelmingly underwhelming, and by accident I saw a fantastic cover on a book on the 'violet' shelf. I chose the book and took it, as also instructed, back to the teacher. Upon her seeing my selection, I was told not to be stupid and to go and get a book I could actually read. Being a basically obedient child I replaced the book, but being also curious, it was barely five minutes before I had chosen a red book, shown the teacher and was holding it in between her and my violet book.
As it may well be obvious by this stage, that book was The HitchHickers Guide to the Galaxy and I devoured it. Against all the beliefs of those persons apparently there to encourage me, I did read it, and within a matter of a couple of weeks I stood before that class and when asked to read aloud, I recited the entire pro-log from memory without opening the book once.
From that moment on I was removed from remedial class, I was permitted to read books that engaged me (I am still an avid reader to this day) and with a couple of degree's under my belt I am a reasonable normal adult.
How much I actually owe to that one text I cannot say, but I personally feel that I owe the man Himself a great debt of gratitude, that I will now unfortunately never have the opportunity to repay. I never even got to meet him, let alone buy him a pint.
However, the legacy of the man is in his dreams not his bones and so I am honoured and privileged to have now joined the ranks of researchers for the Guide. I hope you shall find me engaging.