By now, you've no doubt heard of the untimely death of Douglas Adams last Friday of a heart attack. [ Slashdot | BBC | New York Times ] I wanted to headline this The Lights Went Out In His Eyes For Absolutely The Very Last Time Ever, but DNA's own website beat me to it. My second choice, Hopefully He's Just Spending A Year Dead For Tax Reasons? Saw three different posts in the Slashdot thread mentioning it. He lives on, after a fashion, with the BBC now managing The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy.
My sense of humor was shaped by HHGG, Monty Python, Saturday Night Live, and M*A*S*H (in roughly equal parts). I first encountered HHGG when I was in high school, in the summer of 1981 on WMUK, Western Michigan University's NPR station. I think the first episode I heard was Episode 3 (the gang lands on Magrithea). Fortunately, my brother had taped the first two episodes so I could catch up. I was hooked. I taped all the subsequent episodes, then the first two again when the series was rebroadcast. I listened to the tapes many many times over the years until they were so worn as to be almost unlistenable. One of my all-time favorite Christmas presents was a copy of The Original Hitchhiker Radio Scripts, if for no other reason than it allowed me to decipher all the lines I couldn't properly hear from the tapes. Much later, I bootlegged a friend's copy of the show, available as a six-tape set from The Mind's Eye (whose web site I can't find right now). The interesting thing there is that each episode has about thirty seconds of material that wasn't on my version, which is strange when you consider that my NPR version didn't have commercials either and thus no reason to chop stuff out to make room.
One of the things that was supposed to come along Real Soon Now was a Hitchhiker's movie, and the reason it was taking so long was that Adams had creative control and wanted to make sure it was done properly. Now, I fear, the movie will get made anyway. I predict Marvin will be portrayed as a wisecracking ferret with a heart of gold (ahem) and voiced by Billy Crystal.
And to top it all off, we had to have our 15-year-old cat put to sleep yesterday. This is shaping up to be an absolutely superb week.