relating to the investigation of existence and knowledge
Not only is it a wholly remarkable book, it is also a highly successful one—more popular than the Celestial Home Care Omnibus, better selling than Fifty-three More Things to Do in Zero Gravity, and more controversial than Oolon Colluphid’s trilogy of
philosophical blockbusters, Where God Went Wrong, Some More of God’s Greatest Mistakes and Who Is This God Person Anyway?
being of questionable authenticity
In many of the more relaxed civilizations on the Outer Eastern Rim of the Galaxy, the Hitchhiker’s Guide has already supplanted the great Encyclopedia Galactica as the standard repository of all knowledge and wisdom, for though it has many omissions and contains much that is
apocryphal, or at least wildly inaccurate, it scores over the older, more pedestrian work in two important respects.
in a manner incapable of being disentangled or untied
But the story of this terrible, stupid Thursday, the story of its extraordinary consequences, and the story of how these consequences are
inextricably intertwined with this remarkable book begins very simply.
tired to the point of exhaustion
He woke up
blearily, got up, wandered
blearily round his room, opened a window, saw a bulldozer, found his slippers, and stomped off to the bathroom to wash.
an indication that something has been present
vestiges left in Mr. L. Prosser of his mighty ancestry were a pronounced stoutness about the tum and a predilection for little fur hats.
a predisposition in favor of something
...the only vestiges left in Mr. L. Prosser of his mighty ancestry were a pronounced stoutness about the tum and a
predilection for little fur hats.
make a sucking sound
Arthur lay in the mud and
squelched at him.
expressing contempt or ridicule
He flushed hotly under the
derisive grins of the bulldozer drivers.
incapable of being explained or accounted for
Mr. Prosser’s mouth opened and closed a couple of times while his mind was for a moment filled with
inexplicable but terribly attractive visions of Arthur Dent’s house being consumed with fire and Arthur himself running screaming from the blazing ruin with at least three hefty spears protruding from his back.
apparently reasonable and valid, and truthful
This friend of his had first arrived on the planet Earth some fifteen Earth years previously, and he had worked hard to blend himself into Earth society—with, it must be said, some success. For instance, he had spent those fifteen years pretending to be an out-of-work actor, which was
not prominent or readily noticeable
The information he had gathered had led him to choose the name “Ford Prefect” as being nicely
a scientist who studies the properties of celestial bodies
For instance, he would often gate-crash university parties, get badly drunk and start making fun of any
astrophysicists he could find till he got thrown out.
uniform worn by some menservants and chauffeurs
The reason he said green was that green was the traditional space
livery of the Betelgeuse trading scouts.
a maneuver in a game or conversation
It was Arthur’s accepted role to lie squelching in the mud making occasional demands to see his lawyer, his mother or a good book; it was Mr. Prosser’s accepted role to tackle Arthur with the occasional new
ploy such as the For the Public Good talk, or the March of Progress talk, the They Knocked My House Down Once You Know, Never Looked Back talk...
having a daily cycle or occurring every day
The Earth moved slowly in its
in a manner expressing sorrow
“But what about my house...?” he asked
of or relating to unnecessary procedures and red tape
Bureaucratic cock-ups, angry men lying in mud, indecipherable strangers handing out inexplicable humiliation and an unidentified army of horsemen laughing at him in his head—what a day.
evaporating readily at normal temperatures and pressures
It says that alcohol is a colorless
volatile liquid formed by the fermentation of sugars and also notes its intoxicating effect on certain carbon-based life forms.
having a strong pleasant odor
Over the back of a silver spoon float a measure of Qualactin Hypermint extract,
redolent of all the heady odors of the dark Qualactin Zones, subtle, sweet and mystic.
extremely exciting as if by alcohol or a narcotic
Over the back of a silver spoon float a measure of Qualactin Hypermint extract, redolent of all the
heady odors of the dark Qualactin Zones, subtle, sweet and mystic.
lacking vitality as from weariness or illness or unhappiness
Arthur smiled at him
wanly and shrugged again. He turned and smiled
wanly at the rest of the pub just in case any of them had heard what was going on.
luggage consisting of a small case with a flat bottom
It nestled in the darkness inside a leather
satchel which Ford Prefect habitually wore slung around his neck.
travel by getting free rides from motorists
Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy has a few things to say on the subject of towels.
A towel, it says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar
hitchhiker can have.
injurious to physical or mental health
You can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta...wrap it round your head to ward off
noxious fumes or avoid the gaze of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal...
You can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta...wrap it round your head to ward off noxious fumes or avoid the gaze of the
Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal...
below the threshold of conscious perception
In moments of great stress, every life form that exists gives out a tiny
subliminal signal. This signal simply communicates an exact and almost pathetic sense of how far that being is from the place of his birth.
The girl he had dragged along to the pub with him had grown to
loathe him dearly over the last hour, and it would probably have been a great satisfaction to her to know that in a minute and a half or so he would suddenly evaporate into a whiff of hydrogen, ozone and carbon monoxide.
sudden violent winds, often accompanied by precipitation
He didn’t notice how cold it had suddenly become, he didn’t notice the wind, he didn’t notice the sudden irrational
squall of rain.
the act of depriving something of its sacred character
The great ships hung motionless in the sky, over every nation on Earth. Motionless they hung, huge, heavy, steady in the sky, a
blasphemy against nature.
include in scope
Many people went straight into shock as their minds tried to
encompass what they were looking at. The ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don’t.
Then there was a slight whisper, a sudden spacious whisper of open
ambient sound. Every hi-fi set in the world, every radio, every television, every cassette recorder, every woofer, every tweeter, every mid-range driver in the world quietly turned itself on.
a short lively tune played on brass instruments
But there was no concert, no music, no
fanfare, just a simple message.
a final climactic stage
But it was not in any way a coincidence that today, the day of
culmination of the project, the great day of unveiling, the day that the Heart of Gold was finally to be introduced to a marveling Galaxy, was also a great day of
culmination for Zaphod Beeblebrox.
an irreversible accomplishment
Only six people in the entire Galaxy understood the principle on which the Galaxy was governed, and they knew that once Zaphod Beeblebrox had announced his intention to run as President it was more or less a
fait accompli: he was ideal presidency fodder
soldiers regarded as expendable under artillery fire
Only six people in the entire Galaxy understood the principle on which the Galaxy was governed, and they knew that once Zaphod Beeblebrox had announced his intention to run as President it was more or less a fait accompli: he was ideal presidency
an artifact that belongs to another time
The term Imperial is kept though it is now an
anachronism. The hereditary Emperor is nearly dead and has been for many centuries.
inactivity resulting from a balance between opposing forces
In the last moments of his dying coma he was locked in a
stasis field which keeps him in a state of perpetual unchangingness.
having great beauty
All except the Hooloovoo were
resplendent in their multicolored ceremonial lab coats; the Hooloovoo had been temporarily refracted into a free-standing prism for the occasion.
attentive in an ingratiating or servile manner
The three billion people weren’t actually there, but they watched his every gesture through the eyes of a small robot tri-D camera which hovered
obsequiously in the air nearby.
foam as if boiling
Water boiled up beneath the bubble, it
seethed and spouted. The bubble surged into the air, bobbing and rolling on the water spout.
A government spider
sidled up to him and attempted to press a copy of his prepared speech into his hands.
have the idea for
At the heart of it, unseen, lay a small gold box which carried within it the most brain-wrenching device ever
conceived, a device that made this starship unique in the history of the Galaxy, a device after which the ship had been named—the Heart of Gold.