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Douglas Adams Sucks

Submitted by Teephphah at 2005-08-12 10:04:32 EDT
Rating: 1.92 on 43 ratings (43 reviews) (Review this item) (V)

Got your attention?

Good. I know the title of this post has you all in a rage. It is one of the unwritten rules of Uber that You Must Love Douglas Adams. And I do. Actually.

But here’s the deal. I have a little kid. A kid who really, really, really enjoys reading (or, at least, being read to). I also have a very limited children’s library and a limited attention span. This means that I can only read “Mister Brown Can Moo,” about seventy bajillion times before my eyes start to cross and I go insane.

So, this puts me on the lookout for new sources of stimulation. I need to find new and exciting books to read to my son.

About a month ago, in a moment of desperation, I did the unthinkable.

I grabbed the old, yellowed copy of Winnie the Pooh that my mother-in-law had given us when The Boy was born. I guess, in my wife’s family, this was considered a fairly significant gift. Every single member of her family seems to have an undying affection for that dumb-ass bear.

I, on the other hand have always hated same said dumb-ass bear.

Nevertheless, as I was saying, I was desperate to avoid reading “Is Your Mama a Llama” again, so I grabbed anything I could find.

What I read blew my mind.

Turns out, this wasn’t the Pooh I had been exposed to as a nubile young boy. This was smart. This was funny. It was witty and clever and all that good stuff.

I have no idea what the fuck Disney did to Pooh when they acquired the rights, but they sure as hell fucked it all up.

As I read, (or tried to read – it is VERY English and doesn’t roll off my American tongue the way it should when read aloud) these stories to my boy, I was immediately stuck with a rather odd impression.

”I know a crazy big-headed Englishman who tends to write things in just this way,” I thought. Sort of a weird off-kilter view of the world, where things that are supposed to be taken as a given are, often as not, turned on their heads.

I freaking loved that shit.

So I did a little looking, and sure enough, no one on the whole intraweb agrees with me. I figured there would be a million Douglas Adams = A.A. Milne websites out there.

But there aren’t.

There are only pages dedicated to how great either Adams or Milne are. I think that’s weird.

I see an incredible similarity in their writing styles. I see so many similarities that, I’m convinced that Adams MUST have been read nothing but Winnie the Pooh stories as a child.

I don’t know if many of you Adams fans have ever taken the time to re-visit Milne’s stuff since you’ve grown up, (Note: NOT the newer, Americanized stuff) but I’m here to tell you that you really should. It’s good stuff.

I’ve also taken the time to steal a bunch of quotes from the various web-sites mentioned above. It is my hope that they will show a little bit of the similarities. If not, oh well, I’m leaving the office in about an hour anyway.

Go weekend.

Anyway, hope you like the quotes.
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When late morning rolls around and you're feeling a bit out of sorts, don't worry; you're probably just a little eleven o'clockish.
A. A. Milne
Pooh's Little Instruction Book, inspired by A. A. Milne

When looking at your two paws, as soon as you have decided which of them is the right one, then you can be sure the other one is the left.
A. A. Milne
Pooh's Little Instruction Book, inspired by A. A. Milne

When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.
A. A. Milne
House at Pooh Corner

Wherever they go, and whatever happens to them on the way, in that enchanted place on the top of the forest, a little boy and his Bear will always be playing.
A. A. Milne
From closing lines of House at Pooh Corner

You can't help respecting anybody who can spell TUESDAY, even if he doesn't spell it right; but spelling isn't everything. There are days when spelling Tuesday simply doesn't count.
A. A. Milne
House at Pooh Corner

It is more fun to talk with someone who doesn't use long, difficult words but rather short, easy words like "What about lunch?"
A. A. Milne

My spelling is Wobbly. It's good spelling but it Wobbles, and the letters get in the wrong places.
A. A. Milne
Winnie the Pooh

One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.
A. A. Milne

They're funny things, Accidents. You never have them till you're having them.
A. A. Milne
Pooh's Little Instruction Book, inspired by A. A. Milne




Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so.
Douglas Adams

Even he, to whom most things that most people would think were pretty smart were pretty dumb, thought it was pretty smart.
Douglas Adams, The Salmon of Doubt, p. 205

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.
Douglas Adams

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

I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.
Douglas Adams

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

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

Life... is like a grapefruit. It's orange and squishy, and has a few pips in it, and some folks have half a one for breakfast.
Douglas Adams

He felt that his whole life was some kind of dream and he sometimes wondered whose it was and whether they were enjoying it.
Douglas Adams, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"
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Howitshouldhavebeen.jpg
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Submitted by zakalwe at 2005-08-13 20:05:27 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Submitted by d_prime (user info) at 2005-08-12 16:28:46 (#)
Ranking: 2

+2 for the earlier, better HG2G movie.

====

it wasn't a film, it was a 6 part tv series.

cock.

Submitted by sebcharrot at 2005-08-13 20:00:07 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Submitted by Arthur_Dent (user info) at 2005-08-12 10:45:30 (#)
Ranking: 2

Phallic, yes quite.

I always guffaw cynically when people get upset about pop stars and the likes dying but thinking of DA does give me a bitter sweet melancholy.

I suppose it is a testament to his skill that people feel they know him.

His narration was so definately HIM. I am a massive fan of the narration as story mode of writing and a lot of my clumsy, worthless efforts are in that mode.

----------------

I have to give another +2 for that.

One of the biggest kicks in the balls I ever received was when I found the 4 books of the trilogy in my loft and, not knowing what they were, decided to read them anyway. I fell in love, and read them the entire time I was away on holiday. When I got back, I jumped straight onto the internet and searched for Douglas Adams. I felt sick to the stomach when I found out he had died weeks before I started reading his books.

If you're as sensitive about Douglas Adams' death as I am, then I suggest you do not read the preface by Stephen Fry and the eulogy by Richard Dawkins in "The Salmon of Doubt", because I'm pretty sure I was crying when I read them.

Submitted by sebcharrot at 2005-08-13 19:53:56 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I love that style of writing. The type of simplicity which is bloody hard to achieve.

A few years ago I -rather naively- started writing a book about an alien invasion. It was very purposely meant to be Douglas Adams-ish, but I just ended up getting bogged down in schoolwork, and I never picked it up. I think I may post it on Uber some time, to show you guys the fruits of my aspiring childhood dream of being a writer.

Submitted by Stin at 2005-08-12 18:09:37 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

You want Winnie The Pooh's Little Book Of Feng Shui.

Submitted by Shifty at 2005-08-12 16:34:13 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Always seemed to me that Adams never quite grew out of being aged 7.
Milne was at that age too, where everything makes sense even when it doesn't.

Hope I never grow out of being a kid trapped in an adults body.


Submitted by d_prime at 2005-08-12 16:28:46 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

+2 for the earlier, better HG2G movie.

Submitted by munkeypants at 2005-08-12 16:15:05 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Nice

I wonder if Richard Scary still has books out there?

He was always my favortie.

Submitted by Deidra at 2005-08-12 16:08:41 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Submitted by wookie (user info) at 2005-08-12 10:59:30 (#)
Ranking: 2

Awesome. Almost as good as "Einstein and the Buddha."


For other Pooh-related reading, you may want to consider the Tao of Pooh.
----------------------------------

I was about to suggest that, but wookie beat me to it. Read it.

Submitted by Orla at 2005-08-12 15:05:04 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

My cat's name is Tresspassers W.

I love Milne.

Submitted by loki at 2005-08-12 15:03:56 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

very Zenlike that Pooh

Submitted by Phinch at 2005-08-12 14:33:22 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Forty-two.
A. A. Milne
Homerpalooza

Submitted by DonovanMD at 2005-08-12 14:24:50 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I read THHG when I was in grade 7, so when I was about 13 and it basically has stuck as the greatest book I've ever read.

Submitted by JonnyX at 2005-08-12 13:46:48 EDT (#)
Rating: 1

I agree, Douglas Adams does suck.

Submitted by MichaelJackson at 2005-08-12 12:49:37 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

<sings>
Fairy tales, fairy tales
I don't enjoy
Fairy tales and wishful dreams
Are broken toys

'Cause I'm a big boy now (Big boy) <grabs crotch>
That's looking for (Big boy) <grabs crotch>
Someone to love, oh yeah
Someone, someone to share my dreams, oh yeah

Mother goose, oh mother goose
Oh, won't you join
All I need is an ol' lovely girl <oh no>
Holding my arm

'Cause I'm a big boy now (Big boy) <grabs crotch>
That's looking for (Big boy) <grabs crotch>
Someone to love, oh yeah <baybeeeee>
Someone, someone to share my dreams, oh yeah

Skating boards
And kiddie cars
Have had their day
Dating at the picture show with you
Is here to stay <shamone>

'Cause I'm a big boy (Big boy) <grabs crotch>
That's looking for (Big boy) <grabs crotch>
Someone to love, oh yeah
Someone, someone to share my dreams, oh yeah
Come on, baby <grabs crotch>
Come on, baby, ooh <grabs crotch>
</sings>

Submitted by mazellan at 2005-08-12 12:46:25 EDT (#)
Rating: 1

Shame on you for not having faith in Pooh all along.

Submitted by Circe at 2005-08-12 11:48:08 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Submitted by BLITZKREIG_BOB (user info) at 2005-08-12 11:28:38 (#)
Ranking: 2

Actually, repetition is the best way to get the boy to learn how to recognize words and learn to read.
_________

Dr Seuss. Over and over and over and over, until you know the words by heart, until you can read Fox in socks at the speed of sound, until you can recite The Cat in the Hat and The Lorax on long car rides.

The call of the Wild, Wizard of Oz, Treasure Island, Huckleberry Finn until you sound just like an uneducated preteen boy and the words "Nigger Jim" don't make you feel tainted anymore.

And then it's Roald Dahl, because the dialogue is beautiful and doing the scary voices in "The Witches" will make him adore you, and because the bad kids die and the good kids get to leave their wicked parents.

And one day, he'll do it by himself. And he's not going to need you anymore. And he'll want to read to himself before he goes to sleep. Not aloud, in his head.

And those Dr Seuss books that made you so crazy, that ate away at your adult reasoning until you thought juggling fish was the funniest thing on earth, will be taken down from where they've collected dust high on the top of the bookshelf.

And you'll read them to yourself, because he doesn't want you to anymore. And you'll miss his little snugglywarm body all curled up against you while you poured nonsense words into the still, soft air of his room to wrap around him and soothe him to sleep.




And if you're me, you'll remember that you have two more kids who'll demand all this of you, too.

And you'll smile.

Submitted by AlwaysAnEagle at 2005-08-12 11:30:42 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

My grandmother read that to me when I was little. The perennial fave was "When We Were Six."

For more kickassery (this might be for when he gets a little older) check out ALL of the original Oz books. There are a whole bunch of them...I personally prefer the ones by L. Frank Baum, but the others are all right too. A particular favorite was Rinkitink of Oz.

It all gets better if you consider the fact that the Wizard of Oz was written as political commentary. Awesomeness. If that's something you actually care about I can give you a bunch of info on it, but I do recognize that it is kinda dorky, so you won't hurt my feelings if you don't care.

http://www.booksofwonder.net/ <--Oz books

Submitted by BLITZKREIG_BOB at 2005-08-12 11:28:38 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Actually, repetition is the best way to get the boy to learn how to recognize words and learn to read.

Submitted by forensicgirl3 at 2005-08-12 11:16:26 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I can't begin to describe the awesomeness of this right now. Perhaps I'll return later and give it a go. Until then +2!

Submitted by icarus1987 at 2005-08-12 11:07:51 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

The cap of the ONLY good Hitchhiker's movie solidly clinches it. You rock.

Submitted by Mike00295 at 2005-08-12 11:04:15 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Submitted by One4TheRoad at 2005-08-12 10:59:30 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Awesome. Almost as good as "Einstein and the Buddha."


For other Pooh-related reading, you may want to consider the Tao of Pooh.

Submitted by JohnGalt at 2005-08-12 10:54:36 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Now let's review...

MOO MOO
COCK-A-DOODLE-DOO
HOO HOO
KLOPP KLOPP
TICK TOCK
KNOCK KNOCK
DIBBLE DIBBLE DOP
BOOM BOOM BOOM
SPLATT SPLATT SPLATT
whisper whisper

Submitted by goose at 2005-08-12 10:46:29 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

What a fascinating observation. Now I'm gonna have to go back and read them all again. Oh, damn ;).

Additionally, if you like Adams, i have to agree with mbstateside and recommend Terry Pratchett - his turns of phrase are unparalleled in anything else I've ever read. I'm dying waiting for "Going Postal" to come out in paperback (I'm waiting because I own the entire series in paperback in the same edition, and I want to continue my collection in that fashion) (yes, I know I'm crazy - shh).

Submitted by Arthur_Dent at 2005-08-12 10:46:18 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Submitted by Caulaincourt (user info) at 2005-08-12 10:43:20 (#)
Ranking: 2

I wish Teeph and Circe were my parents """


i wish teeph was my girlfriend and circe was my chum.


Or something like that.


Submitted by Arthur_Dent at 2005-08-12 10:45:30 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Phallic, yes quite.

I always guffaw cynically when people get upset about pop stars and the likes dying but thinking of DA does give me a bitter sweet melancholy.

I suppose it is a testament to his skill that people feel they know him.

His narration was so definately HIM. I am a massive fan of the narration as story mode of writing and a lot of my clumsy, worthless efforts are in that mode.


Submitted by Sassmasterr at 2005-08-12 10:45:18 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

sorry, i've never heard of Adams before, but this stuff has caught my attention. i'll investigate deeper.

Submitted by Caulaincourt at 2005-08-12 10:43:20 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I wish Teeph and Circe were my parents

Submitted by Phallic_Cymbals at 2005-08-12 10:42:21 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Douglas Adams quotes bring up a very strong melancholy in me. Do they fill anyone else here with beautiful sadness? I understand that my intoxication is exacerbating my emotions, but those quotations really made me upset/happy/sad/beautiful.

Submitted by Circe at 2005-08-12 10:39:27 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I've been babbling about this for six years. I gave up when people started avoiding me and now I only mention it when drunk.

It'll happen to you.

Submitted by zakalwe at 2005-08-12 10:31:30 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

kudos for using a picture from the tv series rather than the shitty shitty film.

I've never read any of these "americanised" Pooh stories, what's wrong with them? all the ones I used to have were Ladybird editions.

Submitted by Spam at 2005-08-12 10:31:24 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Submitted by apollo88 (user info) at 2005-08-12 10:28:36 (#)
Ranking: 2

You were so close to getting a -2nami.

It is called being 'British' we are all witty.

Thanks for the massive complement by the way.

---

Christ, Apollo's going to get all big-headed now.

Submitted by kaos-king at 2005-08-12 10:30:03 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Submitted by Teephphah at 2005-08-12 10:29:30 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

Scrumdown - Will do on teh Kipling.

Booze update: Day 28. (Although, technically, maybe I should call it "day 3" since I went to a concert on Tuesday night and had some beers. However, in my mind, this was a controlled social experiment. I feel safely and confidently back on the sobriety wagon again now. Until October, when I go to Vegas for the next controlled social experiment.)

Submitted by apollo88 at 2005-08-12 10:28:36 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

You were so close to getting a -2nami.

It is called being 'British' we are all witty.

Thanks for the massive complement by the way.


Submitted by Fucking foul at 2005-08-12 10:27:49 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I generally think books and movies of the sci-fi/space genre suck horribly, but the Hitchhiker's Trilogy is one of my very favorite literary works ever. That's how good Douglas Adams is.

Submitted by Spam at 2005-08-12 10:23:37 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

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.
Douglas Adams

--


Brilliance.

It is to my shame that I always loved the hitchhikers radio and tv shows but never read the books. You may just be responsible for me rectifying that.

Submitted by mbstateside at 2005-08-12 10:22:56 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Ok I've read it now and all is forgiven. I've not read any Pooh since I was a kid but I used to love it back then. My older brother and I would often play "Pooh Sticks" on days out to the country side.

I can see you point though they both do have a lovely turn of phrase. Another English auther wh has the same talent is Terry Pratchett. If he you haven't read any of his stuff check out If you like Adams he'll go down well.

He also has some decent childrens books actually but if your still in the Winnie the Pooh stage you may want to hold off on those.

Submitted by scrumdown at 2005-08-12 10:22:33 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

I am tellin' you dude, give The Boy the gift of Kipling. Just So Stories, Rikki Tikki Tavi, and The Jungle Book for now, and as he grows, so does the Kipling. Kim, The Man Who Would Be King and so forth. Best author ever.







Hey, hows the not boozin goi?? Hope you are doin alright.

Submitted by Bizantine at 2005-08-12 10:15:08 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

heh. you know, you have inspired me to go read A.A. Milne...some time...if it ever falls in my lap...

good call, there are similarities

Submitted by ParlorTrick at 2005-08-12 10:14:40 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

Pooh is a genius.

Submitted by mbstateside at 2005-08-12 10:13:06 EDT (#)
Rating: 0

Firstly let me say

Noooooooooo! Burn Heretic!

Ok I got that of my chest no I'll go read it.

Submitted by pen_name at 2005-08-12 10:11:47 EDT (#)
Rating: 2

+2 nice catch

I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.
Douglas Adams

i have to admit, that seemed very...poohish


Marge, there's just too much pressure, what with my job, the kids, traffic
snarls, political strife at home and abroad. But I promise you, the second
all of those things go away, we'll have sex.

-- Homer Simpson
Grampa vs. Sexual Inadequacy