Reading Douglas

Today it’s international towel day. If you don’t know what that means, you’re ill prepared for what lies ahead of you – meaning life, in general terms, which has a way to throw the unexpected at you. Hence your need for a towel, even if you don’t know it yet.

Today is also a good day to take 5 minutes and remind yourself and the rest of us of a passage, a sentence, a moment that Douglas Adams pulled out of his head at some point in time and that it never fails to make you smile. There are many for me, but this morning this one is the first that came to my head. Twitter’s limitations meant that I decided to read it instead, and Emma challenged me to put it up here. As she rightly points out – it’s space related. Kind of. I now challenge my fellow gutter dwellers to follow suit. And I challenge you.

I also want to say just how great a book ‘Last Chance to See’ is. It brings out the best of the world, even in some seriously dire situations. Sometimes something happens and I wish Douglas Adams was there to write it down, and crystallise something that my brain recognises as funny and ironic and insightful, but which my brain can’t quite bring into words. This is why I love this passage. I’m so much like that megapode, and yet it took Douglas’ genius to make me realise that, and endlessly smile at the world as I do so. Chances are,  I would see that megapode nest, write code to compute its volume, and simply leave with the nagging feeling that there was something else to the whole situation than what meets the eye.

Douglas Adams was great at these something elses. I wish he was around for more.