Thursday, September 23

End of an era approaching...

I am addicted to Harry Potter. 

Now, this is no secret if you know me well.  I am not ashamed of my obsession and I admit it proudly.  Some people, like M, don't really understand why Harry Potter is important.  I am sad for these people.

About eleven or so years ago, I was in seventh grade. My childhood best friend, Amy, was a year younger than me.  I went over to her house one afternoon and she told me she was reading Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.  She informed me it was about wizards and this school called Hogwarts.  Now, since Amy is a year younger than me, I regarded this piece of literature as juvenile and something that was totally below me.  I went on with my life forgetting about such childish lit.

Important note: my mom is a bibliphile.  There's a bookshelf in my parents' living room that covers an entire wall, and the only thing taking up space on that bookshelf besides books, is a TV.

My brother worked at an educational toy store in high school called Zany Brainy.  When I was in seventh grade, he was a junior.  He came home with the first three books of the Harry Potter series, and he, my mom and my dad all proceeded to read them.  This was a problem because I had deemed Harry Potter as juvenile, but now three individuals who were older than me, two adults, were reading this series.  I didn't cave, though, I would not read something so stupid.  Nope. Nope. Nope.

My family has this silly...I mean super silly, Christmas tradition started by my dad, who is a silly man.  Instead of normal gift tags that read "To: Ingrid, From: Drew" we write gift tags that read like this "To: The Tennessee Volunteer, From: The Crimson Tide" or "To: Our Delta Gamma Girl, From: The Source of Your Sorority Dues."  It's weird and until last year was the norm (it died because it gets harder and harder to come up with creative ideas.)  So anyway, in seventh grade when my whole family had read Harry Potter, and I thought it was the stupidest thing ever written because, yes, I judge books by their cover, my parents wrote a gift tag to me that read, "To the Muggle, From [something Hogwarts/HP related that I can no longer remember]."  Now remember, seventh graders are hormonal and finicky.  I asked what a muggle was, and when I was denied the truth, I got really upset and pitched a fit.  My parents and brother's responses were "if you'd read Harry Potter, you'd learn what a muggle is."

I'm not a bandwagon girl.  I try really, really hard to dislike whatever is popular.  Just 'cause.  For instance, I hate the following things just because they're popular: American Idol, Justin Beaver (and I know that's not his name, but it sounds like beaver),  Twilight (or I did until I was really bored and needed something to read), Lady Gaga (I just don't her popularity), Glee (mostly because all the characters are cocky and I hate cocky), and Ugg boots (they must be called Ugg because they're ugggggggly!)  That's just to name a few.  So not only did I think Harry Potter was weird, I also didn't want to read it because it was popular.

But after relentlessly hearing "you'll have to read HP to learn what a muggle is," I cracked.  I finally sat down and started reading HP and the Sorcerer's Stone.

I also hate admitting when I'm wrong.  Guess what?  I was wrong about how childish and stupid Harry Potter was.  I flew through the first three books.  The third became my favorite almost instantly.  How did JK Rowling intertwine her story line so well?  It was pure genius!  I hit a snag when I finished the Prisoner of Azkaban, though.  The fourth book wasn't out yet!  What would I do?

I grew up with Harry Potter.  Or rather, I matured with Harry Potter since I was a teenager by the time I started reading it.  I felt at home within the pages of Hogwarts and other various locales.  I felt like I was friends with Harry, Ron and Hermione.  I waited eagerly for each addition to be released.  I attended midnight parties at Barnes and Noble and midnight film premieres when they came out in theatres.  The final book installment was released on July 21, 2007.  This was also the day my big sister in Delta Gamma set as her wedding date (I was kind of annoyed, but I made do with the situation-even though she should've known the book release might interfere with bridesmaid duties).  I pre-ordered my book from Amazon to be delivered that day.  I called my mom that afternoon before the ceremony started and asked if it had arrived.  She told me yes, and maliciously she told me she had read the last chapter so she knew who lived and who died.  I went ape-shi*!  I told her she was forbidden from telling me anything and that as soon as I got home, I would be barricading my self in my room to read.

The wedding was in a small town in West Tennessee, so after the ceremony, and spending the night Saturday night (which was agony knowing my book was sitting on my bed an hour and a half away.....)I hurried home on Sunday and did as I warned my mom.  I had intentionally asked off work for Sunday so that I could spend the day reading.  Eventually, I finished the book.  And that was the end of my Harry Potter life as a I knew it.  I knew the end.  There were no more secrets; nothing more I didn't know.  My heart broke a little.  I helped a tad that I had a couple more movies to look forward to.

When they announced that HP and the Deathly Hallows would be made into two movies, I was a little bit angry.  How dare they exploit the greatest story of all time, just to make a little bit more money!  However, the previous six movies have left out key important events, so I am hopeful that by making two movies, they'll be able to include the essential aspects of the story.

M and I went to the beach in June.  I needed some beach-lit but didn't have anything appealing (plus, half my stuff was packed up for my move two weeks later) so I went to my stand-by.  Harry Potter.  I've read them countless times (with the exception of the Deathly Hallows, which I've only read twice, soon to be thrice.)  I packed Sorcerer's Stone and Chamber of Secrets and since the beach in June, I have read my way through the series.  Again.  It never gets old.  I decided I wanted to get through it all in it's entirety so I can truly appreciate the movies (and criticize what they royally screw up.)  My co-worker is reading my copy of DH to her 8 year old right now, and when she's done, I'll have enough time to read it and have a week or two to spare before the release of the movie.

The new trailer for the seventh (and eighth) movie came out yesterday and it gave me goosebumps.  I think I'm too engrossed in this story.  Like it's true or possible or something.  I encourage you to watch the trailer if you're a fan.  It's going to be divine!


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