Chat away – Happy Towel Day

Out of the depths of Maggie Thatcher’s Britain, a comic novel of genius arose to mock the insanity of the time. That novel was Douglas Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. If you haven’t read it, you must. And today, May 25, is “Towel Day”, held to commemorate Mr. Adams’ passing in 2001, taken from us too soon. From the novel on the importance of carrying a towel:

A towel, it says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have. Partly it has great practical value. You can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta; you can lie on it on the brilliant marble-sanded beaches of Santraginus V, inhaling the heady sea vapours; you can sleep under it beneath the stars which shine so redly on the desert world of Kakrafoon; use it to sail a miniraft down the slow heavy River Moth; wet it for use in hand-to-hand-combat; wrap it round your head to ward off noxious fumes or avoid the gaze of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal (such a mind-bogglingly stupid animal, it assumes that if you can’t see it, it can’t see you); you can wave your towel in emergencies as a distress signal, and of course dry yourself off with it if it still seems to be clean enough.

More importantly, a towel has immense psychological value. For some reason, if a strag (strag: non-hitch hiker) discovers that a hitchhiker has his towel with him, he will automatically assume that he is also in possession of a toothbrush, face flannel, soap, tin of biscuits, flask, compass, map, ball of string, gnat spray, wet weather gear, space suit etc., etc. Furthermore, the strag will then happily lend the hitch hiker any of these or a dozen other items that the hitch hiker might accidentally have “lost.” What the strag will think is that any man who can hitch the length and breadth of the galaxy, rough it, slum it, struggle against terrible odds, win through, and still knows where his towel is, is clearly a man to be reckoned with.

The novel’s major theme is in its tagline: “Don’t Panic”. We need to keep that simple phrase in mind as we wend our way through what will be a momentous 2nd term for Barack Obama. If Arthur Dent can survive the destruction of the Earth and the concomitant unavailability of a good cup of tea just so that the Vogons could build an interstellar highway, then we can surely survive the laughable machinations of Issa, McConnell, Boehner, Cantor, et al.

So, don’t panic, carry a towel to be prepared for what life throws at you, and chat away.

102 Responses to “Chat away – Happy Towel Day”

  1. 1 Jovie
    May 25, 2013 at 3:29 pm

    • May 25, 2013 at 3:30 pm

      But but, Worse than Watergate, coddling our enemies, Marxism!!!!!!

      • 3 Gazelle62
        May 25, 2013 at 3:35 pm

        I love that novel LL. You are a majestic writer!

        • May 25, 2013 at 3:36 pm

          Sometimes I think I’m not half bad. I owe my love of writing to my sophomore English teacher at Bronx Science. After her class, I gave up an aspirations at drawing/painting that I had, and devoted myself to writing.

          • 5 vcprezofan2
            May 25, 2013 at 4:01 pm

            LL, you draw and paint too? Lucky you, or should I just say bless-ed you? 😀 Great conclusion for all Obamabots! TY

            • May 25, 2013 at 4:02 pm

              I USED to be very good at drawing. But here’s the funny thing: as I became a better writer, I became a worse drawer. Lack of practice, of course, but also perhaps I have only so much energy and it all goes into the writing.

              • 7 vcprezofan2
                May 25, 2013 at 4:10 pm

                If I thought energy would do it for me, I would definitely give it a try. I have tremendous respect for those I know who can draw – especially if it’s something I recognize. 😉 😉

      • May 25, 2013 at 4:12 pm

        “…carbon-based lifeforms that still think digital watches are a pretty neat idea.”

        Oh, and GO Dortmund!

    • 9 hopefruit2
      May 25, 2013 at 3:31 pm

      I just heard a huge explosion in my backyard. Must be Chuck Todd’s head erupting in anger. Congrats Jovie on #1 🙂

      • 10 africa
        May 25, 2013 at 5:11 pm

        Todd and his ilk never learn. They keep searching and keep coming up short and will continue to fail and fall short.

    • 11 Don
      May 25, 2013 at 3:35 pm

      Again with being number #1 Jovie, I’m not saying that Chips tip you off when a new post is about to pop up, but you do have an uncanny ability to be in the right place at the right time, just sayin’

    • 16 Judith Fardig
      May 25, 2013 at 4:00 pm

      Yay Jovie! Thanks for the graph and the common sense.

    • 17 Nena20409
      May 25, 2013 at 5:56 pm

      Gold…..for Jovie….yeah. Congrats.

  2. 18 jacquelineoboomer
    May 25, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    Enlisted man, now Secretary of Defense, Chuck Hagel speaks at West Point graduation … take that, McCain:


    • 19 Don
      May 25, 2013 at 3:47 pm

      I imagine McCain sitting on his back porch sipping bourbon cursing the day he was introduced to Sarah Palin.

      • May 25, 2013 at 3:50 pm

        An honorable man would take the lessons learned from that debacle and mend his ways. That McCain has slid further into resentment and Teabaggery indicates the kind of man he is.

        • 21 yardarm756
          May 25, 2013 at 5:28 pm

          He wasn’t worth a shit as a Naval Officer either. If he hadn’t been such a “penis cap” he might have avoided a stint in the Hanoi Hilton.

          • 22 Don
            May 25, 2013 at 5:51 pm

            “Penis cap” nice Molotov cocktail, yardarm756.

            • 23 yardarm756
              May 25, 2013 at 6:17 pm

              Sorry Don. It’s just that McCain grosses me out. We were in the South China Sea at the same time.

              • May 25, 2013 at 6:37 pm

                My principal (who I’m pretty sure is Republican but of the moderate non-insane variety) and I had a conversation about McCain during the ’08 election. We were pretty wary because politics is not usually talked about at school but I remember him saying that his dad served with McCain and had not a good word to say about him. I am 99% sure that my principal voted for President Obama both times.

      • 29 vcprezofan2
        May 25, 2013 at 4:07 pm

        IMO for Johnnie McC to re-assess any of his political decisions (including choice of Palin) would suggest that he is capable of self-analysis and of rational thinking. Nothing I have seen of him over the years suggests that he is capable of either. Indeed, such action on his part might even suggest that Johnnie is patriotic. That too I have seen no (21st Cent.) evidence of.

        • 30 nathkatun7
          May 25, 2013 at 7:21 pm

          Hey VC, I agree with you 100%. I really don’t understand why McCain is held in such high esteem given his record of pettiness and irrational behavior. Case in point, compare the behavior of both Al Gore and John Kerry towards President Bush with McCain’s behavior towards President Obama. BothGore and Kerry (although a case could be made that both men were robbed of the presidency) moved on from their losses. They were not in front of cameras trying to constantly bash the man who defeated them.

        • 31 99ts
          May 25, 2013 at 9:53 pm

          He had so many chances to prove he was an “honorable man” and blew the lot. Palin was just the last in a series of horrible decisions. He was/is dismal as a decision maker – seems he can’t think through to the consequences. This is why so many in the GOP and the media “change their tune” so often. Reading back (as I am always late to the party) the story of Barbara Lee – which I had never heard – is amazing – someone who considers the consequences before making a decision.

          • 32 vcprezofan2
            May 26, 2013 at 2:08 am

            ‘He had so many chances to prove he was an “honorable man” ‘

            Now 99ts, you know you can’t prove to be true what’s really not true! 😉

            • 33 99ts
              May 26, 2013 at 3:27 am

              There were glimpses of what he could have been in the 2008 campaign – he was in favor of health care, corrected people who attacked PBO because of the color of his skin & despite the stupid of “suspending his campaign” – he realized the financial disaster as the horrific economic collapse that it was. He just didn’t have a clue as to how to do anything – and post 2008 he has been led through the nose by those who would do anything to bring down the President.

              But yes – there was little honorable about his post POW life – personal and political.

              • 34 vcprezofan2
                May 26, 2013 at 5:14 am

                I will always maintain that Johnnie McC’s ‘correction of people who attacked PBO’ was an example of opportunism so it pains me when he is credited with integrity. I believe if one were to check his 2008 campaign timeline carefully they’d find that he only corrected THAT woman after having been called out for not having done something similar previously. IMO it was a play to the media. Once he corrected himself, the desperate MSM quickly pounced on the example and gave him major credit, so, a not entirely stupid McC added it to his repertoire and used it to hang on to a vote or two. And re McC being ‘led through the nose’, let’s not forget he has done an awful lot of leading in this regard.

                Really, 99ts, apologies to you, but I truly don’t choose to give Johnnie McC any credit whatsoever for anything ‘good’. During the campaign, I saw and heard him ‘live’, plus saw a video of how he treated a family member of missing veterans and he quite simply disgusts me. Be that as it may however, I feel you might agree he is not worthy of any more of our time.

                • 35 99ts
                  May 26, 2013 at 9:47 am

                  No need at all to apologize to me – I saw a right wing press during the 2008 campaign & probably believed more than I should have. The 5 years since have made me realize how difficult it is to find the truth in US politics – which is why I spend time at TOD. You are all a delight

      • 36 jacquelineoboomer
        May 25, 2013 at 4:13 pm

        I can’t tell you what I imagine about McCain, so I’ll just embrace what you said, Don.

        Of course, he has only himself to blame … he probably can’t admit that, which means … more bourbon.

  3. 37 AJ
    May 25, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    oooh, I met Douglas Adams eons ago at a book signing in Philadelphia! He looked intensely bored (for some bizarre reason, there wasn’t a huge crowd around him…not enough publicity for the book signing? Whatever…), but was very pleasant to me when I approached him.

    A very talented man.

  4. 40 Judith Fardig
    May 25, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    Douglas Adams said the answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything was 42. I think we at TOD would amend that to the number 44!

    • 41 99ts
      May 25, 2013 at 9:55 pm

      Now what a thought is that 🙂 🙂 I love the 42, but you have a very good point with your number.

  5. 42 desertflower
    May 25, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    For the incompetent MSM.

  6. 43 jackiegrumbacher
    May 25, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    I love Memorial Day parades and today I went to a humdinger. We have a nearby town of 1500 that always holds the biggest parade in the state and draws groups as far away as DC. Today, the bands were great–especially the bagpipers–the Shriner cars and clowns made all the kids laugh and the floats and special features were ‘imaginative’, including a black horse drawn, old-fashioned hearse from the local funeral home. Best of all was a lively dancing band from Washington, DC that came on strong at the end of the parade and woke up the streets. A family of four kids were taught to say ‘thank you’ as rows and rows of reps from all branches of the military and from all ages and wars paraded by. It made them all smile. Days like today help you to forget all the things that divide us and focus on the symbols and sacrifices that still bind us together into a common American identity. Tomorrow we’ll go back to throwing bricks across the ideological divide, but today was good.

    • 44 vcprezofan2
      May 25, 2013 at 4:13 pm

      It sounds like it was a really ‘special’ time of togetherness. Maybe the brick throwing won’t start again until the day AFTER tomorrow. 😉

    • 45 jacquelineoboomer
      May 25, 2013 at 4:25 pm

      I almost feel as though I were at that parade with you, JackieG! So glad you had the experience.

    • 46 utaustinliberal
      May 25, 2013 at 4:39 pm

      Sounds like fun. Glad you all had a good time.

  7. 47 desertflower
    May 25, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    Music night should have some Eagles one night:) Maybe another night for “Songs of Summer”…….so much good stuff!

  8. 52 4morefor44
    May 25, 2013 at 4:35 pm

    for years i’ve filled up my gas tank to $42 and stop there in honor of douglas adams. it would be right around full if it was near empty when i pulled up. now $42 isn’t even 3/4 of a tank in the same vehicle…just within the last couple of years. the profiteering happening everywhere at every level is completely unsustainable in the long run. crazy

  9. 54 utaustinliberal
    May 25, 2013 at 4:41 pm

  10. May 25, 2013 at 4:50 pm

    re: Fox News James Rosen

    The knee-jerk “let’s chase a shiny object story, especially if it’s about us” needs to do a U-turn and humbly apologize for their ginned-up “scandalabra:”

    1) DOJ “had to accuse Rosen of a crime in order to get the warrant approved.”

    2) ” Fox News was informed nearly three years ago about the subpoena for call logs for five lines related to Mr. Rosen…”

  11. 57 canadabarb4obama
    May 25, 2013 at 5:08 pm

    Thanks, LL, for reminding me of how much I enjoyed the Hitchhikers Guide!

    • 58 jacquelineoboomer
      May 25, 2013 at 7:58 pm

      You, too? How’d I miss that? That’s two close friends of mine who will never stop talking … uh … I mean who thoroughly enjoy it. Happy for you.

      • 59 99ts
        May 25, 2013 at 10:00 pm

        We love it in Australia too JoB – friend of mine brought some tapes (cassette tapes!) of it spoken on radio home from the UK – before the books were available in my world – loved it forever

  12. 61 africa
    May 25, 2013 at 5:09 pm

    In the mean time, Tavis Smiley, only a speck in the universe thinks PBO has time to sit and worry about him. The gall. Calls for belly hurting laugh.

    • 62 Don
      May 25, 2013 at 6:01 pm

      I’ve seen Rev. Jackson and Rev. Al fight the good fight for many many years, so whatever shortcomings these men posses so be it. But Tavis Smiley hasn’t even bust one grape as far as being on the front line of anything. All of these sideline warriors and keyboard commandos can go take a flying fuck.

      • 63 Don
        May 25, 2013 at 6:15 pm

        Furthermore, when President Obama leaves office these same people that provide Smiley and the rest of the Black Bourgeoisie a platform to bash President Obama are going to get thrown out with yesterday’s trash, never to be heard from again until the next African American President arrives.

      • 64 nathkatun7
        May 25, 2013 at 6:55 pm

        Bravo, Bravo, Don for speaking TRUTH! What you said of Tavis Smiley applies to others like Ta Nahesi Coates, Cornel West and the other Black academics/pundits who never miss a chance to attack President Obama. Unlike the late Derrick Bell, who put his job on the line at Harvard Law school, to protest the lack of hiring of Black women law professors, I can’t recall a single incident where Doctor, Professor, West, as well as some of the other vocal Black academic bashers of the President, sacrificed their careers to advance the interests of Black people in academia. Again , I go back to the common sense wisdom of my grandmother (may she RIP) who only finished seventh grade. She despised hypocrites who talked a good game but had very little to show in term of deeds.

  13. 66 Nena20409
    May 25, 2013 at 5:54 pm

    Great Post LL. Stay strong and be well. I read the news you posted two posts ago.

    • May 25, 2013 at 7:21 pm

      Thanks Nena. Just got done with the huge program we had at the library today, and it went of SMASHINGLY. Normally I’d go home and have a celebratory cocktail. Instead, I’ll have to settle for some Crystal Light lemonade.

  14. 69 a4alice
    May 25, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    Hitchhikers Guide! Remember the BBC series? that was great – I got a big kick out of it. I thought the movie was good too, loved Martin Freeman as Dent. The one line that always sticks with me is the dolphins as they’re leaving Earth (Before the Vogons come to build their interstellar highway) saying “thanks for all the fish!”

    Happy Towel Day all!

  15. 70 kathryn kivett
    May 25, 2013 at 6:16 pm

    Hi…I have been reading and reading trying to see if I missed that PBO WILL attend memorial service…..am I wrong….He will not be there?….Security issue MY ASS….Scheduling problem…BS…..it’s being held in a church…so was the Boston memorial(a big church but so what)…….Pure and simple…those people in Oklahoma did not want him there…Not just b/c of the color of his skin but b/c they did not want to give him the opportunity of delivering another compassionate, consoling, brilliant speech that some in Oklahoma might actually hear and have a positive reaction to……You know, it just leaves a bad taste in my mouth for people like that…..

    • 71 prettyfoot58
      May 25, 2013 at 6:44 pm

      I have not heard anything…about it…..will be looking out…Carolyn would know…I have not seen her on today

    • 72 anniebella
      May 25, 2013 at 6:52 pm

      kathryn kivett, If POTUS can go to Texas and be greeted by that awlful Texas Governor I will not name, and receive a decent welcome in Texas, I believe the same can be said for Oklahoma. I am guessing, because you never know. And beside, it doesn’t bother me one bit if he doesn’t go to any memorial service. He has been to right many here lately, and I am looking forward to the day when POTUS, FLOTUS the girls, Bo, get the time to go off some where for a vacation.

      • 73 kathryn kivett
        May 25, 2013 at 7:59 pm

        Anniebella, I do not believe it is b/c PBO did not WANT to be at the memorial…which is scheduled at 6:30 at a Baptist Church and I’m certain it could have been scheduled to include PBO….I truly believe that these people did not want him there for whatever reason….they just want the Federal tax Dollars…..now don’t get me wrong, I certainly do not want any of those people to suffer and would want everything to be done for them that is humanly possible to help make them whole again…..It is true that PBO has been to a lot of memorials lately but when he goes he brings comfort to those that are suffering……I just hate that the people of Oklahoma are denied that comfort….and yes, I am very ready for him to take a long weekend off and then a really long vacation…..

        • 74 anniebella
          May 25, 2013 at 8:22 pm

          kk, you maybe right, all I’m saying is if these people are that shitty, then it’s their lost. Won’t POTUS be meeting with some of the families?

          • 75 kathryn kivett
            May 25, 2013 at 8:38 pm

            Well you are right there but it’s sad for the victims…….yes, I did read that he would hold private meetings with families that were affected and first responders..and maybe that’s what they requested…no publicity…privacy….

  16. May 25, 2013 at 6:24 pm

    Another good smartypants post that brought me to tears at the end. Just an incredibly poignant reminder (as if we needed one) of what a thoughtful, compassionate, honest, spiritual, hard-working man we have as president. People with minds and hearts open enough to see who he really is are blessed beyond measure and those whose brains and spirits are clogged with lies and fear are to be deeply pitied and prayed for.


    ” I recall that way back in 2007, David Brooks asked then-Senator Barack Obama what he thought of Niebuhr’s writing. Here’s what he said:
    “I take away,” Obama answered in a rush of words, “the compelling idea that there’s serious evil in the world, and hardship and pain. And we should be humble and modest in our belief we can eliminate those things. But we shouldn’t use that as an excuse for cynicism and inaction. I take away … the sense we have to make these efforts knowing they are hard, and not swinging from naïve idealism to bitter realism.””

  17. 77 vcprezofan2
    May 25, 2013 at 6:34 pm

    Okay, be good and thoughtful and take care of each other. I’m going to get ready for a friend’s red-black-white semi-formal 40th birthday party. 🙄 She made sure I had no excuse by leaving a phone message invitation, dropping off a formal (card) invitation at the house, (none of which I was home to receive) AND sending me an email invitation. Will check back in upon my return, as I’m sure TODvillage will be well into its own party. Ta-ta for now.

  18. 81 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    May 25, 2013 at 7:08 pm

  19. 82 anniebella
    May 25, 2013 at 7:51 pm

    What time will POTUS be heading to Oklahoma tomorrow? Anyone know.

    • 83 hopefruit2
      May 25, 2013 at 8:18 pm

      Good question annie. We may not find out until tomorrow morning or late this evening if Chips can find that info somewhere.

  20. 84 desertflower
    May 25, 2013 at 8:02 pm


    This Is Not 2009

    With the scent of scandal encircling the White House, some Republicans are already licking their chops over the 2014 midterm elections, while some Democrats are pre-emptively licking their wounds.

    Not so fast, folks. Retract those tongues.

  21. 85 a4alice
    May 25, 2013 at 8:04 pm

    I think we were talking about the koch brothers here and how they support WNET . ( I always see funded by David Koch when I’m wathcing NOVA and it makes me shudder). Well ha. Guess what? Read here:


  22. 86 hopefruit2
    May 25, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    LMAO! Well it didn’t take MMFlint long to start looking for attention….

  23. 96 africa
    May 25, 2013 at 9:09 pm

    Ever the parasite, here is an issue Moore can attach his posterior to.

    • 97 nathkatun7
      May 26, 2013 at 12:12 am

      The emoprogs could care less about the bridge collapse because it would mean supporting President Obama’s jobs’ bill which calls for funding to repair and renovate the infrastructures. All they care about are drones, single payer, and unlimited freedom of the Press that allows agenda driven political hacks, masquerading as members of the press, to undermine national security.

  24. 98 africa
    May 25, 2013 at 9:09 pm

  25. 99 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    May 25, 2013 at 9:37 pm

    Americans understand that Memorial Day, or “Decoration Day,” as my parents called it, has something to do with honoring the nation’s war dead. It is also a day devoted to picnics, road races, commencements, and double-headers. But where did it begin, who created it, and why?

    As a nation we are at war now, but for most Americans the scale of death and suffering in this seemingly endless wartime belongs to other people far away, or to people in other neighborhoods. Collectively, we are not even allowed to see our war dead today. That was not the case in 1865.

    At the end of the Civil War the dead were everywhere, some in half buried coffins and some visible only as unidentified bones strewn on the killing fields of Virginia or Georgia. Americans, north and south, faced an enormous spiritual and logistical challenge of memorialization. The dead were visible by their massive absence. Approximately 620,000 soldiers died in the war. American deaths in all other wars combined through the Korean conflict totaled 606,000. If the same number of Americans per capita had died in Vietnam as died in the Civil War, 4 million names would be on the Vietnam Memorial. The most immediate legacy of the Civil War was its slaughter and how we remember it.

    more at link:

    • 100 nathkatun7
      May 26, 2013 at 12:23 am

      Historian David Bright suggests that the idea of Memorial Day (Remembrance Day), to honor military service people lost in wars, was actually originated by African Americans in the aftermath of the Civil War.

  26. 102 Alycee (@jazziz2)
    May 25, 2013 at 9:41 pm

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