The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy has, in what we laughingly call the past, had a great deal to say on the subject of parallel universes. Very little of this is, however, at all comprehensible to anyone below the level of Advanced God, and since it is now well-established that all known gods came into existence a good three millionths of a second after the Universe began rather than, as they usually claimed, the previous week, they already have a great deal of explaining to do as it is, and are therefore not available for comment at this time…
Nowadays, because of the plethora of one-to-many communication we have, if a plane crashes in India we may get terribly anxious about it, but our anxiety doesn’t have any impact. We’re not well able to distinguish between a terrible emergency that’s happened to somebody a world away and something that’s happened to someone round the corner. We can’t really distinguish between them anymore, which is why we get terribly upset by something that has happened to somebody in a soap opera that comes out of Hollywood and maybe less concerned when it’s happened to our sister. We’ve all become twisted and disconnected and it’s not surprising that we feel very stressed and alienated in the world because the world impacts on us but we don’t impact the world.
I've been having a hard time developing a fresh friendship through my story. I don't have any ideas regarding how a good conversation could start between them considering that they only met say a week ago. Any tips?
Character A compliments Character B about something. Compliments in general are a low-stakes way to break the ice, and can range from the friendly (“Cute dress! Where’d you get it?”) to the flirtatious (“You have the most beautiful smile. Diamonds everywhere are envious.”) Paying a compliment can also be a shortcut to a conversation about a mutual interest. Let’s say Character B is wearing a t-shirt referencing a thing Character A also loves, like a band or a show or book. Character A might run up to them and say something like, “Oh my God, I love your shirt! Douglas Adams is the bomb. Did you like the radio series better, or the books?” The same goes for any books Character B might be reading or buying, the music they might be listening to or browsing, etcetera.
Discussion about something they both obviously, superficially have in common. Maybe they’re in the same art appreciation class and they both hate it. Maybe they’re working on the same project for their Religion in Pop Culture class. Maybe they have a mutual friend that gets into crazy shenanigans and want to swap stories. Maybe they always see each other at the same out of the way, hole-in-the-wall cafe across town. Or maybe they’re wearing the same Hitchhiker’s Guide t-shirt.
Character B plops down next to Character A and just starts talking. This was how I met one of my best friends in high school. We were in the same P.E. class freshman year, and on the very first day of school, I saw her sitting along the fringe of the group by herself. I didn’t have anyone to talk to either, and I figured the worst that could happen would be awkward silence, so I walked right over and sat down and introduced myself. We discovered we had the same favorite band, and WHAM, instant friendship.
Get them tipsy. Alcohol is known as social lubricant for a reason. Also known as the Ernest Hemingway, if all else fails, stick your characters in a room together with a bottle of agreeable booze and some glasses.
In the past the whales had been able to sing to each other across whole oceans, even from one ocean to another because sound travels such huge distances underwater. But now, again because of the way in which sound travels, there is no part of the ocean that is not constantly jangling with the hubbub of ships’ motors, through which it is now virtually impossible for the whales to hear each other’s songs or messages.
So fucking what, is pretty much the way that people tend to view this problem, and understandably so, thought Dirk. After all, who wants to hear a bunch of fat fish, oh all right, mammals, burping at each other?
But for a moment Dirk had a sense of infinite loss and sadness that somewhere amongst the frenzy of information noise that daily rattled the lives of men he thought he might have heard a few notes that denoted the movements of gods.
Douglas Adams, The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul
“I refuse to prove that I exist,” says God, “for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing.”
“But,” says Man, “the Babel fish is a dead giveaway, isn’t it? It could not have evolved by chance. It proves that You exist, and so therefore, by Your own arguments, You don’t. QED”
“Oh dear,” says God, “I hadn’t thought of that,” and promptly vanishes in a puff of logic.
“Oh, that was easy,” says Man, and for an encore goes on to prove that black is white and gets himself killed on the next zebra crossing.
The final proof of the NON-existence of God from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
An actual script, on the other hand, is hundreds of ideas bashed around, screwed up, thrown into the bin, fished out of the bin an hour later and folded up into thick wads and put under the leg of a table to stop it wobbling. And then the same again for the next line, and the next, and so on, until you have a whole page or the table finally keels over.