As Pretty As An Airport


“It can hardly be a coincidence that no language on earth has ever produced the expression, ‘As pretty as an airport.”
― Douglas AdamsThe Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul

I’m new to Douglas Adams’ works.

References to THE HITCHHIKER’S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY movie (2005) have whirled around in the background of my awareness, but when it was released, I was very much involved in that thing called life: first grandchild, wedding of the eldest, death of the maternal unit, perhaps a mid-life crisis (the purchase of a sports car was involved).

So I first became consciously aware of Douglas Adams only recently when I read in an Irish writers blog about how much he was missed.

Dirk Gently

At the same time, because I have a few Acorn videos, I’ve sat through promotions of the TV series, DIRK GENTLY,[1]. It looked quirky. Quirky is good. So I watched the  series on Amazon, fell in love with the mind of Douglas Adams, listened to Martin Freeman’s reading of THE RESTAURANT AT THE END OF THE UNIVERSE, and watched the HITCHHIKER’S movie.

This is what I’ve noticed about Douglas Adam’s writing: many of his scenes are recognizable from daily living. In RESTAURANT, there is a scene that sure looks like a collection of Hollywoodies and another scene that looks a lot like Las Vegas. My favorite quote is: “Who would want to blow up a publishing house?” (or words to that effect).

(I just love it when writers write about writing. It’s like their sending coded messages to writers who read.)

Anyway, even though his writing is in the genre of “comic science fiction,” Adams wrote pointed observations of the human condition. It seems that his genre gave him permission to escalate his satire. After all, it wasn’t about us anymore, it was about them.

Which brings me back to the quote. Funny because it is oh, so true.

My premise today is: It is by writing made-up stories that we have the power to excavate truth.

What say you, Mysteristas?

[] A new version is in production by Netflix and BBC America for release in December 2016.


14 thoughts on “As Pretty As An Airport”

  1. Love this post, Keenan! I love Douglas Adams, but I haven’t read him since I was a kid. Maybe I’ll have to pick him up a again. Great point about why he was able to escalate his satire, too.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Love your premise, Keenan! I completely agree. I think fiction (and humor!) gives us a new perspective, allows us to shed light on a truth in a more digestible way. Gotta admit, I’ve never read Douglas Adams, but definitely want to now!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree too. And I think that’s why it’s so hard for writers (or is it just me?) to find the theme of a story until AFTER we write it, and often not until someone else points it out to us. Those Universal Truths are often deep-seated!


  4. My favorite quote, “Don’t Panic”…maybe because I need to use it so often. Thank you for reminding me of all the joy I had reading Douglas Adams books. Now you’ve stirred my heart to rent those movies and relive his genius.


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