Demaestro - 10:42 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)
Sorry to have sidetracked from your original question. There are lots of good reasons for you to learn this, even as a hobby, or to gauge BS levels when dealing with a web developer.
This may sound silly but I have heard decent things about:
"Creating Family Web Sites For Dummies"
Also online there are lots of good tutorials. For me I learn better using tutorials because you get some working practice and the "why" makes more sense to me when I see it in action.
You can try tutorials on W3.org (the standards body for all things web)
HTML and CSS Tutorials (You will be mostly concerned with these):
Good luck and as you run into questions this is a great place to ask.