Gaiman's American Gods

Paul Andinach pandinac at
Thu Oct 11 00:51:25 EDT 2001

On Wed, 10 Oct 2001, Becca wrote:

> Paul wrote, after Christian wrote:

> > > as i think i said in another post, i also felt like he basically
> > > lifted richard mayhew from douglas adam's hitchhiker's guide's
> > > arthur dent, and sent him to play in the london sewers. 
> >
> > I think this objection is, perhaps counter-intuitively, a sign
> > that you're not as perspicacious as you think you are.
> I (Becca) am writing on the part of my poor mother, who upon reading
> these harsh and chilling Words of Wisdom, has retired to her bed in
> a cold sweat.
> She is being examined, among other things, on her ability to make
> comparisons between prominant characters in Literature on this day
> next week, and the thought that someone's feeling about such a
> comparison might prompt you to say they are not as perspicacious as
> they think they are is a most terrifying and bewildering concept.

Oh dear. Please convey my sincere apologies.

What I objected to about Christian's objection wasn't the idea that
Richard and Arthur are comparable (I agree with that much), but the
the bit about Richard being "lifted" from The Hitchhiker's Guide to
the Galaxy.

(The "not as perspicacious as you think" came into it because the
realisation that Richard Mayhew is not a completely original
character type shows some perpicacity, but the realisation that
he's not a straight ripoff of Arthur Dent would show more.)

> (Also the fact that this biting rebuke was uttered using a word of
> over two syllables has disturbed her delicate mental balance.)

Very sorry. That's just the way it came out.

> Believe me, there is none so adept at the art of making my mother
> insane as I, but it really is not ideal at a time like this. In the
> words of the immortal Benedick, Paul, I ask you to 'examine your
> conscience.' (That's from Much Ado About Nothing, if you didn't
> know.)

I can only repeat that I am very sorry, and that I wasn't talking
about character comparisons in general; as long as she refrains from
claiming that one character was lifted from another, she has nothing
to fear from me.

"Hold fast to the one noble thing."

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