[video=youtube_share;QXD8uCSoZNU]http://youtu.be/QXD8uCSoZNU[/video] The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy has this to say about shoplifting: If you want to steal food from a convenience store, always tie your left shoelaces tighter than your right. Across the galaxy, philosophers have spent years trying to decipher this statement. They have also spent years robbing convenience stores in shoes of alternating tightness. The experiments have led to four empirical essays, eight hundred and seventy-two court cases, and the outlawing of shoes on twenty nine planets of the Outer Rim. To make matters worse, none of the five editors of the Guide can remember including this entry and have agreed to put it down to a time-travelling wormhole conspiracy by the Illuminati. This is their answer to most of the book's discrepancies. Shoplifting is a popular past-time on many planets and with the cosmic recession there are more participants every day. Indeed, in the Halgadroggen System many businesses have done away with shop security altogether and opted instead to install high-powered scanners that ID people upon entry and steadily deplete their associated credit cards of funds. This encourages customers to run through the shop as quickly as possible and grab as much as they can before their bank accounts are emptied. This remarkable revolution in mercantile culture has allowed the Halgadroggens to save substantial sums of money, as they no longer need to employ security guards, shop clerks or logical shelf-labelling. It has also improved the fitness of the general public and discouraged disabled people from eating. It has been hailed as an all-round success. For everyone, that is, except the twelve-armed rampaging Slurgle Monsters of Debilon Five, who have been banned from entering these shops due to the unfair advantage of having twelve arms, four stomachs and a nursing pouch you store a cow in. Relations between the two species have never been worse. Incidentally, it should be noted that the twelve-armed rampaging Slurgle Monsters of Debilon Five are also regarded as the most prodigious and diligent producers of shoelaces in the known galaxy. It is things like this, and the Babel Fish, that prove definitively that we live in a Godless universe. On the morning of April 23rd, about two thousand years after one man had been nailed to a tree for saying how great it would be to be nice to people for a change, Honda Civic was running across a street on a small and utterly insignificant blue-green planet in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the western spiral arm of the galaxy. Civic had never been very good at shoplifting. Unlike the rampaging Slurgle Monsters of Debilon Five, he only possessed two arms, with which he was trying to hold onto five bottles of Jack Daniels whisky. As he ran he left a trail of dollar bills, most of which he had thrown at Astrid Stuffy, the store clerk and protagonist of the "Ms. Scumfree" floor-cleaner commercials, who happened to be working that day. By his side was Civic's inseparable friend, Anthony Horwitzer, who had met Civic precisely two weeks ago at a pub in England and flown with him to the United States earlier that morning. Only at this particular moment, he was not by Civic's side. In fact, Anthony Horwitzer had just collided with Maria Gonzales, a young woman who had been handing out flyers featuring reduced prices in laxatives available at the pharmacy across the street. Anthony had dropped the twelve bags of salted peanuts he had stolen and was now lost in a heap of laxative flyers, dollar bills, salted peanuts and Maria Gonzales. This is important to remember. Anthony will be in a similar situation later in our story. Meanwhile, Honda Civic had rushed across the road, dodging the big American cars that refused to slow down for a man in a suit, and was currently screaming at David Barthirst, the owner of the tailor shop opposite the convenience store and adjacent to the pharmacy. David Barthirst was, at the time, engaged in an argument with an old lady about a small dog. David, the old lady, and the dog were thus very surprised to be interrupted by a man waving five bottles of Jack Daniels. "TOWELS! WE NEED TOWELS!"