In the interest of spreading the word about this wonderful fan-created holiday, I’m posting once again an explanation and a list of resources and ideas for celebrating Towel Day. “What is Towel Day?” Why, I’m so glad you asked! May the 25th is Towel Day, created to honor the life and works of the late and great author, Douglas Adams, who gave us such jewels as The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series, several Dirk Gently humorous detective novels, and the non-fiction book Last Chance to See. He also worked on Though Adams died too young, his work lives on after him in everything from books and television series to pop culture references that constantly pop up to the amazement and delight of geeks and fans everywhere.
OK, so why use a towel to remember such a hoopy frood? SO GLAD YOU ASKED.
From the Guide:
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.
—Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
First things first, if you haven’t read any of his books yet, FOR THE LOVE OF ZARQUON, read one of his books! If you don’t have time to sit down and read, listen to an audiobook. You can check them out of the library. If you can’t do either of those, borrow one of the movies! But seriously, you could finish one of the books in a day, because they are pretty thin as well as awesome.
If anyone has read these suggestions before in my previous Towel Day posts, I apologize for the repetition, but consider this an update, ok? Anyway, you three know you are the hippest cats this side of Betelgeuse, so I know you’ll understand.
Since the holiday is called Towel Day, the most obvious suggestion is to carry a towel with you all day long. Do it as conspicuously as possible, so that if people ask you why you are carrying a towel to the grocery store, you can tell them all about Hitchhikers. Like so:
Uninitiated stranger: “Hey, why are you carrying a towel in the grocery store?”
You, fan extraordinaire: “Why, I’m so glad you asked! Let me tell you…”
And so on…
For those of you already familiar with the book, here are a few more suggestions:
*Lie down in front of a toy bulldozer in a tatty bathrobe. (caveat: the TOY part is important here, as lying down in front of a real bulldozer might be hazardous to your health)
Wear a bathrobe and pajamas all day long.
Drink lots of tea. Possibly eat fairy cake.
Try to make the perfect sandwich for lunch!
Create a Terran (Earth) version of the Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster. There are tons out there, but my son and I challenge ourselves to create a non-alcoholic Terran version of the galaxy’s most alcoholic beverage! Hey, he’s a teenager, ok?
Speak in Hitchhiker slang all day. You dig that, you hoopy froods?
Write some Vogon poetry using the Vogon poetry generator.
Take a photo of yourself with your towel and share it on Twitter (#towelday), FaceBook (at the Towel Day FB page), or Flickr (labeled “Towel Day).
Donate towels to a charity. Lots of animal shelters like to have towels on hand for their charges.
Be very nice to a bowl of Petunias. Water them, talk to them, plant them in some really nice soil. Goodness knows, Agrajag had been through enough!
Come up with alternate uses for your towel, other than hand-to-hand combat and drying off. I’m thinking mine might make a nice scarf or wrap.
Visit other Towel Day themed pages. I discovered this little treasure recently!
Create a blog post in honor of Towel Day!
Tune in to Nick Page’s YouTube channel for some wonderful animations of the Hitchhiker series!
Visit the Towel Day page to discover events in your area and get more great ideas!
I posted this early this year so that you should have sufficient time to implement any suggestions that take your fancy. As always, remember you can always borrow materials from your friendly, neighborhood library. And in this digital age, that usually includes that library’s electronic selections as well, instantly downloaded through the magic of the Internet! And if you can’t find what you need on their website, just ask the reference librarian to order whatever you need.
So what are you waiting for? Please feel free to make any suggestions of your own here, and I’d love it if you’d share your Towel Day adventures! So, see you in a week, and stay hoopy!
*This suggestion was kindly donated by John Wiswell of The Bathroom Monologues via Twitter. Thanks, John!