Marvin: Life? Don’t talk to me about life!
– Douglas Adams, Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, 1979
There’s a lot of stuff going on. Most of it is exhausting and annoying — and all of it, expensive.
In a world where I find myself wondering if I’m going to live long enough to make it worthwhile to get the “lifetime warranty” on the water heater, please do not try to placate me with a platitude. I know them. I’ve heard them. I’ve probably even used them. I just can’t bear the idea of listening to one of them right now. Please don’t.
In honor of the one author that has always found a way to make me laugh — and the only famous person born on my birthday, here are some of my favorite quotes from Marvin, the depressed robot with a mind the size of the universe.
P.S. Someone in New Hampshire won $457 million dollars on a $1 lottery ticket a little while ago. It wasn’t us.
A Sunny Disposition:
Marvin: “My capacity for happiness you could fit into a matchbox without taking out the matches first.”
Arthur: “I think that door just sighed.”
Marvin: “Ghastly, isn’t it?”
Marvin: “Sorry, did I say something wrong? Pardon me for breathing which I never do anyway so I don’t know why I bother to say it oh God I’m so depressed.”
A ‘Can Do’ Attitude:
Arthur: “Marvin, any ideas?”
Marvin: “I have a million ideas. They all point to certain death.”
Trillian: “Marvin… you saved our lives!”
Marvin: “I know. Wretched, isn’t it?”
Marvin: “I’ve calculated your chance of survival, but I don’t think you’ll like it.”
A Strong Work Ethic:
Marvin: “I think you ought to know I’m feeling very depressed.”
Trillian: “Well, we have something that may take your mind off it.”
Marvin: “It won’t work, I have an exceptionally large mind.”
Marvin: “Here I am, brain the size of a planet, and they ask me to take you to the bridge. Call that job satisfaction, ’cause I don’t.”
Marvin: “‘Reverse primary thrust, Marvin.’ That’s what they say to me. ‘Open airlock number three, Marvin.’ ‘Marvin, can you pick up that piece of paper?’ Here I am, brain the size of a planet, and they ask me to pick up a piece of paper.”
A Good Education:
Marvin: “It gives me a headache just trying to think down to your level.”
Arthur Dent: “You mean you can see into my mind?”
Marvin: “It amazes me how you manage to live in anything that small.”
Marvin: “I am at a rough estimate thirty billion times more intelligent than you. Let me give you an example. Think of a number, any number.”
Zem: “Er, five.”
Marvin: “Wrong. You see?”
A Positive Approach To Health And Well-being:
Zaphod Beeblebrox: “There’s a whole new life stretching out in front of you.”
Marvin: “Oh, not another one.”
Marvin: “Do you want me to sit in a corner and rust or just fall apart where I’m standing?”
Marvin: “The first ten million years were the worst. And the second ten million: they were the worst, too. The third ten million I didn’t enjoy at all. After that, I went into a bit of a decline.”
A Keen Interest In Philosophy:
Marvin: “Life? Don’t talk to me about life!”
Marvin: “I ache, therefore I am.”
Marvin: “Life. Loathe it or ignore it. You can’t like it.”
There, now don’t we all feel like better people already?
Douglas Adams, I miss you.