Douglas Adams Quotes

Quotes tagged as "douglas-adams" Showing 1-30 of 67
Douglas Adams
“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.”
Douglas Adams, Last Chance to See

Douglas Adams
“The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy offers this definition of
the word "Infinite".
Infinite: Bigger than the biggest thing ever and then some.
Much bigger than that in fact, really amazingly immense, a
totally stunning size, "wow, that's big", time. Infinity is just so
big that by comparison, bigness itself looks really titchy.
Gigantic multiplied by colossal multiplied by staggeringly
huge is the sort of concept we're trying to get across here.”
Douglas Adams, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe

Douglas Adams
“This planet has — or rather had — a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much all of the time.”
Douglas Adams, The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Douglas Adams
“There’s no point in acting surprised about it. All the planning charts and demolition orders have been on display at your local planning department in Alpha Centauri for 50 of your Earth years, so you’ve had plenty of time to lodge any formal complaint and it’s far too late to start making a fuss about it now. … What do you mean you’ve never been to Alpha Centauri? Oh, for heaven’s sake, mankind, it’s only four light years away, you know. I’m sorry, but if you can’t be bothered to take an interest in local affairs, that’s your own lookout. Energize the demolition beams.”
Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Douglas Adams
“So, like I said, these are a bunch of really sweet guys, but you wouldn't want to share a Galaxy with them, not if they're just gonna keep at it, not if they're not gonna learn to relax a little. I mean it's just gonna be continual nervous time, isn't it, right? Pow, pow, pow, when are they next coming at us? Peaceful coexistence is just right out, right? Get me some water somebody, thank you."

He sat back and sipped reflectively.

OK," he said, "hear me, hear me. It's, like, these guys, you know, are entitled to their own view of the Universe. And according to their view, which the Universe forced on them, right, they did right. Sounds crazy, but I think you'll agree. They believe in ..."

He consulted a piece of paper which he found in the back pocket of his Judicial jeans.

They believe in `peace, justice, morality, culture, sport, family life, and the obliteration of all other life forms'.”
Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy: Tertiary Phase

Douglas Adams
“We're not obsessed by anything, you see," insisted Ford.

"..."

"And that's the deciding factor. We can't win against obsession. They care, we don't. They win."

"I care about lots of things," said Slartibartfast, his voice trembling partly with annoyance, but partly also with uncertainty.

"Such as?"

"Well," said the old man, "life, the Universe. Everything, really. Fjords."

"Would you die for them?"

"Fjords?" blinked Slartibartfast in surprise. "No."

"Well then."

"Wouldn't see the point, to be honest.”
Douglas Adams

Gareth Roberts
“At the age of five, Skagra decided emphatically that God did not exist. This revelation tends to make most people in the universe who have it react in one of two ways - relief or despair. Only Skagra responded to it by thinking - 'wait a second. That means there's a situation vacant!”
Gareth Roberts, Doctor Who: Shada

Nick Webb
“We inhabit a world in which we tend to put labels on each other and expect that we will then march through life wearing them like permanent sandwich boards.”
Nick Webb

Gareth Roberts
“This,’ whispered the Doctor to Romana, ‘is going to be like trying to find a book about needles in a room full of books about haystacks.”
Gareth Roberts

Douglas Adams
“If they were going to be like that, then I just wished they hadn't actually been German. It was too easy. Too obvious. It was like coming across an Irishman who actually was stupid, a mother-in-law who actually was fat, or an American businessman who actually did have a middle initial and smoked a cigar. You feel as if you are unwillingly performing in a music-hall sketch and wishing you could rewrite the script. If Helmut and Kurt had been Brazilian or Chinese or Latvian or anything else at all, they could then have behaved in exactly the same way and it would have been surprising and intriguing and, more to the point from my perspective, much easier to write about. Writers should not be in the business of propping up stereotypes. I wondered what to do about it, decided that they could simply be Latvians if I wanted, and then at last drifted off peacefully to worrying about my boots.”
Douglas Adams, Last Chance to See

Douglas Adams
“The fact is, I don’t know where my ideas come from. Nor does any writer. The only real answer is to drink way too much coffee and buy yourself a desk that doesn’t collapse when you beat your head against it.”
Douglas Adams

Douglas Adams
“After a moment or two a man in brown crimplene looked in at us, did not at all like the look of us and asked us if we were transit passengers. We said we were. He shook his head with infinite weariness and told us that if we were transit passengers then we were supposed to be in the other of the two rooms. We were obviously very crazy and stupid not to have realized this. He stayed there slumped against the door jamb, raising his eyebrows pointedly at us until we eventually gathered our gear together and dragged it off down the
corridor to the other room. He watched us go past him shaking his head in wonder and sorrow at the stupid futility of the human condition in general and ours in particular, and then closed the door behind us.

The second room was identical to the first. Identical in all respects other than one, which was that it had a hatchway let into one wall. A large vacant-looking girl was leaning through it with her elbows on the counter and her fists jammed up into her cheekbones. She was watching some flies crawling up the wall, not with any great interest because they were not doing anything unexpected, but at least they were doing something. Behind her was a table stacked with biscuits, chocolate bars, cola, and a pot of coffee, and we headed straight towards this like a pack of stoats.

Just before we reached it, however, we were suddenly headed off by a man in blue crimplene, who asked us what we thought we were doing in there. We explained that we were transit passengers on our way to Zaire, and he looked at us as if we had completely taken leave of our senses.
'Transit passengers? he said. 'It is not allowed for transit passengers to be in here.'
He waved us magnificently away from the snack counter, made us pick up all our gear again, and herded us back through the door and away into the first room where, a minute later, the man in the brown crimplene found us again.

He looked at us. Slow incomprehension engulfed him, followed by sadness, anger, deep frustration and a sense that the world had been created specifically to cause him vexation. He leaned back against the wall, frowned, closed his eyes and pinched the bridge of his nose.
'You are in the wrong room,' he said simply. `You are transit passengers. Please go to the other room.'

There is a wonderful calm that comes over you in such situations, particularly when there is a refreshment kiosk involved. We nodded, picked up our gear in a Zen-like manner and made our way back down the corridor to the second room. Here the man in blue crimplene accosted us once more but we patiently explained to him that he could fuck off.”
Douglas Adams, Last Chance to See

Douglas Adams
“Tell me the story," said Fenchurch firmly. "You arrived at the station."
"I was about twenty minutes early. I'd got the time of the train wrong."
"Get on with it." Fenchurch laughed.
"So I bought a newspaper, to do the crossword, and went to the buffet to get a cup of coffee."
"You do the crossword?"
"Yes."
"Which one?"
"The Guardian usually."
"I think it tries to be too cute. I prefer The Times. Did you solve it?"
"What?"
"The crossword in the Guardian."
"I haven't had a chance to look at it yet," said Arthur, "I'm still trying to buy the coffee."
"All right then. Buy the coffee."
"I'm buying it. I am also," said Arthur, "buying some biscuits."
"What sort?"
"Rich Tea."
"Good Choice."
"I like them. Laden with all these new possessions, I go and sit at a table. And don't ask me what the table was like because this was some time ago and I can't remember. It was probably round."
"All right."
"So let me give you the layout. Me sitting at the table. On my left, the newspaper. On my right, the cup of coffee. In the middle of the table, the packet of biscuits."
"I see it perfectly."
"What you don't see," said Arthur, "because I haven't mentioned him yet, is the guy sitting at the table already. He is sitting there opposite me."
"What's he look like?"
"Perfectly ordinary. Briefcase. Business suit. He didn't look," said Arthur, "as if he was about to do anything weird."
"Ah. I know the type. What did he do?"
"He did this. He leaned across the table, picked up the packet of biscuits, tore it open, took one out, and..."
"What?"
"Ate it."
"What?"
"He ate it."
Fenchurch looked at him in astonishment. "What on earth did you do?"
"Well, in the circumstances I did what any red-blooded Englishman would do. I was compelled," said Arthur, "to ignore it."
"What? Why?"
"Well, it's not the sort of thing you're trained for is it? I searched my soul, and discovered that there was nothing anywhere in my upbringing, experience or even primal instincts to tell me how to react to someone who has quite simply, calmly, sitting right there in front of me, stolen one of my biscuits."
"Well, you could..." Fenchurch thought about it. "I must say I'm not sure what I would have done either. So what happened?"
"I stared furiously at the crossword," said Arthur. "Couldn't do a single clue, took a sip of coffee, it was too hot to drink, so there was nothing for it. I braced myself. I took a biscuit, trying very hard not to notice," he added, "that the packet was already mysteriously open..."
"But you're fighting back, taking a tough line."
"After my fashion, yes. I ate a biscuit. I ate it very deliberately and visibly, so that he would have no doubt as to what it was I was doing. When I eat a biscuit," Arthur said, "it stays eaten."
"So what did he do?"
"Took another one. Honestly," insisted Arthur, "this is exactly what happened. He took another biscuit, he ate it. Clear as daylight. Certain as we are sitting on the ground."
Fenchurch stirred uncomfortably.
"And the problem was," said Arthur, "that having not said anything the first time, it was somehow even more difficult to broach the subject a second time around. What do you say? "Excuse me...I couldn't help noticing, er..." Doesn't work. No, I ignored it with, if anything, even more vigor than previously."
"My man..."
"Stared at the crossword, again, still couldn't budge a bit of it, so showing some of the spirit that Henry V did on St. Crispin's Day..."
"What?"
"I went into the breach again. I took," said Arthur, "another biscuit. And for an instant our eyes met."
"Like this?"
"Yes, well, no, not quite like that. But they met. Just for an instant. And we both looked away. But I am here to tell you," said Arthur, "that there was a little electricity in the air. There was a little tension building up over the table. At about this time."
"I can imagine.”
Douglas Adams

Douglas Adams
“I don’t know, apathetic bloody planet, I’ve no sympathy at all.”
Douglas Adams

I rarely end up where I was intending to go, but often I end up
“I rarely end up where I was intending to go, but often I end up somewhere I needed to be.”
Douglas Adams, The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul

Douglas Adams
“There were so many different ways in which you were required to provide absolute proof of your identity these days that life could easily become extremely tiresome just from that factor alone, never mind the deeper existential problems of trying to function as a coherent consciousness in an epistemologically ambigiuous phyiscal universe.”
Douglas Adams

Douglas Adams
“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 vanishes in a puff of logic.”
Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Douglas Adams
“Si los seres humanos no dejan de hacer ejercicio con los labios, su cerebro empieza a funcionar.”
Douglas Adams, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe

Douglas Adams
“I said 'dear lady,' " explained Ford Prefect, "because I didn't want her to be offended by my implication that she was an ignorant cretin-”
Douglas Adams, The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Douglas Adams
“He headed to the outer Eastern rim of the Galaxy, where it was said, wisdom and truth were to be found, most particularly on planet Hawalius, which was a planet of oracles and seers and soothsayers and also take-out pizza parlors, because most mystics were completely incapable of cooking for themselves.”
Douglas Adams, The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Douglas Adams
“Out there?" said the man. "Out where?"
"Out there!" said Zarniwoop, pointing at the door.
"How can you tell there's anything out there?" said the man politely. "The door's closed.”
Douglas Adams, The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Douglas Adams
“Yes but, Arthur, that's ridiculous. People think that if you just say 'hallucinations' it explains anything you want it to explain and eventually whatever it is you can't understand will just go away.”
Douglas Adams, The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Douglas Adams
“There were so many different ways in which you were required to provide absolute proof of your identity these days that life could easily become extremely tiresome just from that factor alone, never mind the deeper existential problems of trying to function as a coherent consciousness in an epistemologically ambiguous physical universe.”
Douglas Adams, The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Douglas Adams
“You cannot see what I see because you see what you see. You cannot know what I know becasue you know what you know. What I see and what I know cannot be added to what you see and what you know because they are not of the same kind. Neither can it replace what you see and what you know, because that would be to replace you yourself.”
Douglas Adams, The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Douglas Adams
“At some distance down the corridor it seemed suddenly as if somebody started to beat on a bass drum.

He listened to it for a few seconds and realized that it was just his heart beating.

He listened for a few seconds more and realized that it wasn’t his heart beating, it was somebody down the corridor beating on a bass drum.”
Douglas Adams, Life, the Universe and Everything

Douglas Adams
“But the smell could just as easily have been coming from the old lady who was busy beating flies away from the pile of bodies. It was a hopeless task because each of the flies was about the size of a winged bottle top and all she had was a table tennis bat. Also she seemed half blind. Every now and then, by chance, her wild thrashing would connect with one of the flies with a richly satisfying thunk, and the fly would hurtle through the air and smack itself open against the rock face a few yards from the entrance to her cave.
She gave every impression, by her demeanour, that these were the
moments she lived for.”
Douglas Adams, Mostly Harmless

Douglas Adams
“No," said the old lady. "It's the story of my life. You see, the quality of any advice anybody has to offer has to be judged against the quality of life they actually lead. Now, as you look through this document you'll see that I've underlined all the major decisions I ever made to make them stand out. They're all indexed and cross-referenced. See? All I can suggest is that if you take the decisions that are exactly opposite to the sort of decisions that I've taken, then maybe you won't finish up at the end of your life"-she paused, and filled her lungs for a good shout-"in a smelly old cave like this!”
Douglas Adams, The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Douglas Adams
“A single tune danced through his mind and all his attention rested upon it. It was a tune that seethed through the magical flood, shaped it, formed it, lived through it hugely, lived through it minutely, was its very essence. It bounced and trilled along, at first a little tripping tune, then it slowed, then it danced again but with more difficulty, seemed to founder in eddies of doubt and confusion, and then suddenly revealed that the eddies were just the first ripples of a huge new wave of energy surging up joyfully from underneath.”
Douglas Adams, Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency

Douglas Adams
“GENERAL NOTE TO MYSELF - Douglas Adams

Writing isn’t so bad really when you get through the worry. Forget about the worry, just press on. Don’t be embarrassed about the bad bits. Don’t strain at them, give yourself time, you can come back and do it again in the light of what you discover about the story later on. It's better to have pages and pages of material to work through and often maybe find an unexpected shape in that you can then craft and put it for good use, rather than one manically reworked paragraph or sentence.
But writing can be good. You attack it, don’t let it attack you. You can get pleasure out of it. You can certainly do very well for yourself with it...!”
Douglas Adams

Tom Baker
“By late 1978, we had Douglas Adams as our script editor and he was full of energy. He had just written the first part of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and his first story for Doctor Who, 'The Pirate Planet'. It was something to do with a planet that could hop about the Universe and suck out the energy of the other planets. The earth was threatened and that's where I came in.”
Tom Baker, Who On Earth Is Tom Baker?: An Autobiography

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