That he was born is just one of the many undeniable facts about the life of the late Douglas Adams - author, humorist, raconteur, speaker, and thinker (although it should be noted that, on at least one parallel Earth, Mr. Adams was born a spring-toed lemur with a predilection for grassy fields and the works of Byron - a poetic lemur whose work was not terribly springy).
Another fact which comes to mind is that, of the 7 novels he wrote in his all-too-brief lifetime, by far the most popular is The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and its four sequels - which make for a fine trilogy if you’re somewhat numerically impaired. Please don’t take this as a slight against Adams’s other novels, featuring detective Dirk Gently (Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency and its sequel, The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul), as they are both fine pieces of writing, and should also be read. Your reading list should also include the spoof dictionaries he co-wrote with John Lloyd (The Meaning of Liff & The Deeper Meaning of Liff), as well as his book on endangered species, Last Chance to See (with Mark Carwardine).
Sadly, Douglas Adams passed away on May, 11 2001 in California, where he had spent decades trying to get Hollywood to comprehend (and realize) a big screen version of Hitchhiker’s. Thankfully, he left behind a legacy in print that will not soon be forgotten, as well as a few deadlines that are still pending.
On the eve of the release of the big screen version (Iteration? Interpretation? Desecration? You judge…), I asked a few of Douglas’s friends, colleagues, associates, and vague acquaintances (for the sake of balance, naturally) to provide an anecdote they feel best described the Douglas they knew.
As a poet once said, “My enemy is hopelessness, my ally honest doubt. The Answer is a Question that I never will find out…”
In all fairness, another poet once said, “Don’t you know how sweet and wonderful life could be?… So let’s get it on…”