The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

If you’re a dedicated science fiction reader, a lover of intellectual yarns, a person who appreciates nicely woven tales or just a plain addict of deep loony stories by a really great author, then this piece of gem is definitely for you. This marvel of a book by Douglas Adams is a cultural icon and made people enjoy a certain kind of spunk, the kind not normally related to science fiction. It paved the way for Men in Black and all the other extraterrestrial comedy stuff. Certainly on my list of the top 20 books of all time.

Don't Panic. And always bring your towel. Always.

Don't Panic. And always bring your towel. Always.

One of my favorite excerpts:

The Universe – some information to help you live in it.

1~Area: Infinite.
The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy offers this definition of the word “Infinite”.
Infinite: Bigger than the biggest thing ever and then some. Much bigger than that in fact, really amazingly immense, a totally stunning size, “wow, that’s big”, time. Infinity is just so big that by comparison, bigness itself looks really titchy. Gigantic multiplied by colossal multiplied by staggeringly huge is the sort of concept we’re trying to get across here.

2~Imports: None.
It is impossible to import things into an infinite area, there being no outside to import things in from.

3~Exports: None.
See imports.

4~Population: None.
It is known that there are an infinite number of worlds, simply because there is an infinite amount of space for them to be in. However, not every one of them is inhabited. Therefore, there must be a finite number of inhabited worlds. Any finite number divided by infinity is as near to nothing as makes no odds, so the average population of all the planets in the Universe can be said to be zero. From this it follows that the population of the whole Universe is also zero, and that any people you may meet from time to time are merely the products of a deranged imagination.

5~Monetary Units: None.
In fact there are three freely convertible currencies in the Galaxy, but none of them count. The Altairan Dollar has recently collapsed, the Flaninian Pobble Bead is only exchangeable for other Flaninian Pobble Beads, and the Triganic Pu has its own very special problems. Its exchange rate of eight Ningis to one Pu is simple enough, but since a Ningi is a triangular rubber coin six thousand eight hundred miles across each side, no one has ever collected enough to own one Pu. Ningis are not negotiable currency because the Galactibanks refuse to deal in fiddling small change. From this basic premise it is very simple to prove that the Galactibanks are also the product of a deranged imagination.

6~Art: None.
The function of art is to hold the mirror up to nature, and there simply isn’t a mirror big enough – see point one.

7~Sex: None.
Well, in fact there is an awful lot of this, largely because of the total lack of money, trade, banks, art, or anything else that might keep all the non-existent people of the Universe occupied. However, it is not worth embarking on a long discussion of it now because it really is terribly complicated. For further information see Guide Chapters seven, nine, ten, eleven, fourteen, sixteen, seventeen, nineteen, twenty-one to eighty-four inclusive, and in fact most of the rest of the Guide.


~ by Kevin on January 25, 2009.

2 Responses to “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”

  1. One of my favorite books EVAR! Btw, have you read the entire series?

  2. yup yup! i have the ebook which says Hitchhikers Guide [5 books + 1 short story] haha

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