Towel Day – a Tribute to Douglas Adams


Towel Day: A tribute to Douglas Adams (1952-2001)

Hey, you sass that hoopy Ford Prefect? There’s a frood that really knows where his towel is.

Most of you carbon-based humanoids living in ZZ9 Plural Z Alpha sector probably already know :-) For those who don’t – it’s a quote from Douglas Adams’ famous Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Created initially as a BBC radio series it was later published as a trilogy of five parts. If you like sci-fi and fantasy and have a good sense of humour, you will LOVE Hitchhiker. I read mine for the first time some 10 year ago in Czech (a very nice double edition with Restaurant at the End of the Universe) – and I read all five parts at least three times from beginning to end in Czech as well as in English. The Czech translation is very good, but if you feel reasonably confident with your English, go ahead and read the original – you will definitely appreciate some untranslatable bits.

The “trilogy” actually consists of five parts:

  • The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
  • The Restaurant at the End of the Universe
  • Life, the Universe and Everything
  • So Long and Thanks for All the Fish
  • Mostly Harmless

In addition to the radio series and the books, there was also a TV series of 6 episodes released in 1981. The effects are definitely not it’s strong part – but it sticks closely to the original story and is a nice complement to the books. A must see for a Hitchhiker fan. In 2005, a long awaited film was finished – which is unfortunately a different case. I am not entirely sure how Douglas would feel about it (although he wrote a screenplay)… I personally didn’t like it too much. It modifies the story quite strongly, which is on the other hand quite understandable – it is virtually impossible to fit the story into a single film.

Anyway, back to the original point – Douglas Adams, a hero of millions of Hitchhiker fans has died in 2001. As a tribute to him, an international Towel Day has been set to 25 May. You can show your appreciation of His Froodness by wearing a towel visibly all day!