There comes a time in every child's life when they have to do something they've never done before: read The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy. And on that day, you need to be prepared.
Think about it, older people, and you know it to be true. The day you opened that front cover and read the words "Far out" was the day you started on an amazing journey that crossed time, space, science, humor, language, cultural touchstones of the British and a few Doctor Who episodes here and there. Would you go back into that dark pit of sadness before you knew who Douglas Adams was? Of course not! Of course not.
So, this summer, make sure your child has two things. One, a nice copy of the trilogy, and two, a nice towel set. Yes, they won't understand the connection at first, and they'll think you just mean for them to carry the book in the terry velour tote bag so they can read on the beach (and maybe dry off in the 100% cotton after a few splashes around the pool) but a few pages in they'll understand that you've given them so much more.
Yes, some of the references will be outdated, and the idea of a digital encyclopedia with infinite information isn't exactly science fiction any more, but is that REALLY what the book is all about? Of course not! It's about freedom, and excitement, and travel, and escape, and learning how to properly lie about poetry when the need arises. Just as a towel can be used as a whip, a mat, a shawl and a pair of sunglasses in a pinch.
As you prepare for this summer, don't just buy your child a towel set that'll keep them dry and comfy at the pool. Buy them a towel set that'll keep them dry and comfy at the pool AND a book that'll make them feel like they're part of the greatest adventure in the universe.
And maybe a Mos Def record too. C'mon, he did his best, you can't fault the guy.