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On Saturday, I was at an AFP meet.

“Have you heard about Douglas Adams?”
“No? What?”
“He died, last night. Heart attack”.

Watch as a world comes tumbling down.

And I spent seven hours on trains today, notebook in hand, trying to work out what I was going to say here. Both here’s, the web site and the newsgroup.

I wrote down notes about Fred Gale, my headmaster who noticed I hadn’t won any commendations, and so gave me a Book Token, which which I bought my own copy of the H2G2 series.

I had the section on how DNA inspired me to start writing again.

How Arthur Dent became the metaphor for my existence.

How Douglas Adams is the only author who has written a passage I am in fits of laughter every time I read, no matter how I feel beforehand (…”There is an art, or a knack to flying“…)

In fact, I spent more time planning this than I do any story, post, poem, filk. Or anything.

But I can’t say any of it. I’ve lost the words to describe it.

So the only thing to do is to hit you with a blindingly obvious statement that also manages to sum up the entire thing. He was so much better at that than I will ever be, but I can but try:

Douglas Noel Adams, 1952 – 2001
The future will not be the same without him.

For once, in real sincerity.

Nicholas ‘Aquarion’ Avenell

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