Douglas Adams

Douglas Adams

Douglas Noel Adams (11 March 1952 – 11 May 2001) was an English author, scriptwriter, essayist, humorist, satirist and dramatist. Adams is best known as the author of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, which originated in 1978 as a BBC radio comedy before developing into a "trilogy" of five books that sold more than 15 million copies in his lifetime and generated a television series, several stage plays, comics, a computer game, and in 2005 a feature film. 

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Life is wasted on the living.

I may not have gone where I intended to go but I think I have ended up where I intended to be.

Anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job.

There is a theory which states that if ever for any reason anyone discovers what exactly the Universe is for and why it is here it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another that states that this has already happened.

The knack of flying is learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.

Don't Panic

Space is big. You just won't believe how vastly hugely mind-bogglingly big it is. I mean you may think it's a long way down the road to the drug store but that's just peanuts to space.

Writing is easy. You only need to stare at a piece of blank paper until your forehead bleeds

For a moment nothing happened. Then after a second or so nothing continued to happen.

Without a god life is only a matter of opinion.

I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.

The Answer to the Great Question Of.....Life the Universe and Everything.....(is) Forty-two.

The difficulty with this conversation is that it's very different from most of the ones I've had of late. Which, as I explained, have mostly been with trees.

Life is like a grapefruit. Well it's sort of orangy-yellow and dimpled on the outside wet and squidgy in the middle. It's got pips inside too. Oh and some people have a half a one for breakfast.

I seldom end up where I wanted to go but almost always end up where I need to be.

The mere thought hadn't even begun to speculate about the merest possibility of crossing my mind.

The moment at which two people approaching from opposite ends of a long passageway recognize each other and immediately pretend they haven't. This is to avoid the ghastly embarrassment of having to continue recognizing each other the whole length of the corridor.

He felt that his whole life was some kind of dream and he sometimes wondered whose it was and whether they were enjoying it.

The Guide is definitive. Reality is frequently inaccurate.

Man has always assumed that he was more intelligent than dolphins because he had achieved so much...the wheel New York wars and so on...while all the dolphins had ever done was muck about in the water having a good time. But conversely the dolphins had always believed that they were far more intelligent than man...for precisely the same reason.

No, that's just perfectly normal paranoia. Everyone in the Universe has that.

Humans are not proud of their ancestors and rarely invite them round to dinner.

The ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don't.

Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so.

The fact that we live at the bottom of a deep gravity well on the surface of a gas covered planet, going around a nuclear fireball 90 million miles away, and think this to be normal, is obviously some indication of how skewed our perspective tends to be.

He hoped and prayed that there wasn't an afterlife. Then he realized there was a contradiction involved here and merely hoped that there wasn't an afterlife.

The last time anybody made a list of the top hundred character attributes of New Yorkers common sense snuck in at number 79.

Even traveling despondently is better than arriving here.

This planet has -- or rather had -- a problem which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper which is odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.

He was a dreamer, a thinker, a speculative philosopher...or as his wife would have it an idiot.

The impossible often has a kind of integrity which the merely improbable lacks.

What's so unpleasant about being drunk? You ask a glass of water.

He shifted his weight from foot to foot but it was equally uncomfortable on each.

Nothing travels faster than the speed of light with the possible exception of bad news which obeys its own special laws.

American Atheists: "What message would you like to send to your Atheist fans?" Douglas Adams: "Hello! How are you?"

Watch?? I'm gonna pray Man! Know any good religions?

The idea that Bill Gates has appeared like a knight in shining armour to lead all customers out of a mire of technological chaos neatly ignores the fact that it was he who by peddling second-rate technology led them into it in the first place.

Some say that the universe is made so that when we are about to understand it it changes into something even more incomprehensible. And then there are those who say that this has already happened.

Perhaps I'm old and tired but I always think that the chances of finding out what really is going on are so absurdly remote that the only thing to do is to say hang the sense of it and just keep yourself occupied.

My doctor says that I have a malformed public duty gland and a natural deficiency in moral fibre ' he muttered to himself 'and that I am therefore excused from saving Universes.

If there's anything more important than my ego around I want it caught and shot now.

Dave is one of my favorite sources of information and opinion on the Web. His opinions are passionately held, well-informed, intelligent, argumentative and quite often wrong.

One always overcompensates for disabilities. I'm thinking of having my entire body surgically removed.

The major difference between a thing that might go wrong and a thing that cannot possibly go wrong is that when a thing that cannot possibly go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at or repair.

The red brick wall was the color of a brick-red Crayola

See first think later then test. But always see first. Otherwise you will only see what you were expecting. Most scientists forget that.

I guess when [novels] started most early novels were just sort of pornography: Apparently most media actually started as pornography and sort of grew from there. [Starship Titanic] is not a pornographic CD-ROM I hasten to add.

In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move.

Ford? There's an infinite number of monkeys outside who want to talk to us about this script for 'Hamlet' they've worked out

If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird of the family anatidae on our hands.

He inched his way up the corridor as if he would rather be yarding his way down it...

One of the most blissful joys of the English language is the fact that one of its greatest practitioners ever one of the guys on the very top table of all was a jokesmith. Though maybe it shouldn't be that big a surprise. Who else would be up there? Austen of course Dickens and Chaucer. The only one who couldn't make a joke to save his life would be Shakespeare.

The story goes that I first had the idea for THHGTTGalaxy while lying drunk in a field in Innsbruck.

Having been an English literary graduate I've been trying to avoid the idea of doing art ever since.

So long and thanks for all the fish.

This must be Thursday. I never could get the hang of Thursdays.

In order to fly all one must do is simply miss the ground.

I'm spending a year dead for tax reasons.

You live and learn. At any rate you live.

I don't believe it. Prove it to me and I still won't believe it.

Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?

I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that I don't know the answer.

If somebody thinks they're a hedgehog presumably you just give 'em a mirror and a few pictures of hedgehogs and tell them to sort it out for themselves.

A computer terminal is not some clunky old television with a typewriter in front of it. It is an interface where the mind and body can connect with the universe and move bits of it about.

It is known that there are an infinte 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. Any finite number divided by infinity is as near 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 products of a deranged imagination.

That young girl is one of the least benightedly unintelligent organic life forms it has been my profound lack of pleasure not to be able to avoid meeting.

Ford you're turning into a penguin. Stop it.

Many men of course became extremely rich but this was perfectly natural and nothing to be ashamed of because no one was really poor at least no one worth speaking of.

Now it is such a bizarrely improbable coincidence that anything so mind-bog-gglingly useful could have evolved purely by chance that some thinkers have chosen to see it as the final and clinching proof of the non-existence of God. The argument goes something like this: `I refuse to prove that I exist ' says God `for proof denies faith and without faith I am nothing.' `But ' says Man `The Babel fish is a dead giveaway isn't it? It could not have evolved by chance. It proves you exist and so therefore by your own arguments you don't. QED.' `Oh dear ' says God `I hadn't thought of that ' and promptly vanished in a puff of logic. `Oh that was easy ' says Man and for an encore goes on to prove that black is white and gets himself killed on the next zebra crossing.

Besides the pastor there were about five people who had access to the safe ... Those people have been eliminated as suspects through the investigative process.

Why can't people just learn to live together in peace and harmony?' said Arthur. / Ford gave a loud very hollow laugh. / 'Forty-two!' he said with a malicious grin 'No, doesn't work. Never mind.

It's easier to say that I am a radical Atheist just to signal that I really mean it have thought about it a great deal and that it's an opinion I hold seriously.

Human beings who are almost unique in having the ability to learn from the experience of others are also remarkable for their apparent disinclination to do so.

Totally mad. Utter nonsense. But we'll do it because it's brilliant nonsense.

We demand rigidly defined areas of doubt and uncertainty!

I think fish is nice but then I think that rain is wet so who am I to judge?

We have normality. I repeat we have normality. Anything you still can't cope with is therefore your own problem.

What to do if you find yourself stuck in a crack in the ground underneath a giant boulder you can't move with no hope of rescue. Consider how lucky you are that life has been good to you so far. Alternatively if life hasn't been good to you so far which given your current circumstances seems more likely consider how lucky you are that it won't be troubling you much longer.

It is a rare mind indeed that can render the hitherto non-existent blindingly obvious. The cry 'I could have thought of that' is a very popular and misleading one for the fact is that they didn't and a very significant and revealing fact it is too.

I think the idea of art kills creativity.

There is a particular disdain with which Siamese cats regard you. Anyone who has walked in on the Queen cleaning her teeth will be familiar with the feeling.

I am fascinated by religion.That's a completely different thing from believing in it.

A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.

Bypasses are devices that allow some people to dash from point A to point B very fast while other people dash from point B to point A very fast. People living at point C being a point directly in between are often given to wonder what's so great about point A that so many people from point B are so keen to get there and what's so great about point B that so many people from point A are so keen to get there. They often wish that people would just once and for all work out where the hell they wanted to be.

There is a theory which states that if ever anybody discovers exactly what the Universe is for and why it is here it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another theory which states that this has already happened.

To give real service you must add something which cannot be bought or measured with money and that is sincerity and integrity.

Ah this is obviously some strange usage of the word 'safe' that I wasn't previously aware of

It's no coincidence that in no known language does the phrase "As pretty as an airport" appear

Time is bunk.

His study was a total mess like the results of an explosion in a public library.

It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

It is a well-known fact that those people who must want to rule people are ipso facto those least suited to do it... anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job.