Log in

In my ongoing project to make enough felted animals to decorate our holiday tree, the latest denizen is this bananagator.  No, there is no such thing as a bananagator.  But if Tabasco has created a peppergator, why not?  :-)  Why yes, I do, in fact, dream of other vegetal gators!

The girls say this bananagator likes to gnaw on their fingers.  It doesn't hurt.  She is not only made of felt, but her teeth are adapted to handle only ripe bananas.  :-)

Speaking of ripe bananas, I think my next healthy baking project will be these chocolate banana bars.
One of the most unbearable things in HP is that Sirius wouldn't have had to die if Harry had remembered to use the two-way mirror Sirius had given him.  How could Harry have forgotten about such a valuable gift?  Especially when Umbridge was policing the fires?  I would have been using that thing every day if I were Harry!  I've always skimmed right over the part at the end of OotP when Harry finds the unused mirror and breaks it.  Too painful to think about.  Agonizing.  But it shows me how much I've focused on Snape-centric readings and neglected storylines that have nothing to do with Snape.  JKR must have been getting at something by showing that a tool for communicating with Sirius were right there, and Sirius was waiting the whole time for Harry to use it, and...nothing.  What was she getting at?  An unbridgeable divide between Sirius and Harry?  An underscoring of the lesson that Harry isn't James?  The frustration that elders can't make some things easier for kids and sometimes kids just won't listen but have to learn things for themselves?  Something about not being able to access Sirius fully until after his death?  I feel like these are all wild speculations on my part and I'm missing the mark, something that will be clear and feel right to me when I eventually figure it out (or, fingers crossed, have someone explain it to me!).

The knife is a bit like that, too, though not as painful.  Of course, the broken mirror shard is everything in DH, and I did so love that this artifact lurked dormant for a volume before fulfilling its greatest purpose.  A knife that could open anything -- does he even ever use it?  I know, spectacularly, that it is nullified by the locked door in the Department of Mysteries -- did he ever do anything with it before then?  [ETA:  Of course!  He used it to get into Umbridge's locked office to use the Floo to talk to Sirius while the twins created a diversion.  So much elaborate work when he could have used the mirror.  Ow my heart.  He remembered the knife but not the mirror.]

What does Sirius give Harry that does function as intended?  The Firebolt; the toy broom; his inheritance; advice; his Hogsmeade permission slip; a Defense textbook, presumably, though we never see Harry in the act of consulting it.

Throughout the series, some artifacts work for certain people, some don't.  It's significant.  Magical artifacts generally show trust in Snape, even when they're not meant for him:  the cloak works for him when he picks it up despite Harry's protective snarling, the Elder Wand would have passed safely to his care if Draco hadn't surpassed expectations, the Sword of Gryffindor trusts him to handle it.  The Marauder's Map, however, does not respond to him; he can only read it when someone has left it open.  The Resurrection Stone will not work for Dumbledore, nor for Scrimgeour.  Barty Crouch, Jr.'s Foe Glass shows Snape's face, but by the fully Occluded time of Snape's death, the castle doesn't grant him a portrait.  Only Parselmouths or those possessed by Parselmouths can open objects protected by Parseltongue passwords until Ron, after killing a Horcrux, gains that skill as well.  Why do Sirius's valuable gifts not function for Harry as Sirius intended?

I love Ernie Macmillan so much

JKR's writing skill really glows in OotP.  With just a few lines of dialogue, we get a vivid sense of Professor Grubbly-Plank during Umbridge's inspection of her.  And then <3 my favorite minor character, Ernie Macmillan, shows up.  Whenever people have complained that JKR's writing is mediocre, I've always thought about how completely I feel like I know this kid who barely appears:

“Well said!” barked Ernie Macmillan, whom Harry had been expecting to speak long before this. “Personally I think this is really important, possibly more important than anything else we’ll do this year, even with our O.W.L.s coming up!”
He looked around impressively, as though waiting for people to cry, “Surely not!” When nobody spoke, he went on, “I, personally, am at a loss to see why the Ministry has foisted such a useless teacher upon us at this critical period. Obviously they are in denial about the return of You-Know-Who, but to give us a teacher who is trying to actively prevent us from using defensive spells —”

That bolded bit -- I never noticed it until this readthrough.  Heh.  This kid is 15.  I can just hear and see him.

ETA:  And then a few pages later, when Ron learns that Ginny is dating, JKR shows us his shock by saying that his ears were "resembling curls of raw beef."  Wow.  *happy sigh*
Back in the 1980s, my friends and I used to go to the filthiest dive bar in Itaewon, the neighborhood in Seoul where the American G.I.s hung out.  It was called the Iron Horse and they would sell alcohol to anyone.  I remember 7th graders going there to buy beer.  I'm not actually sure why anyone but us went there.  What a dump.  <3  My best friend in high school used to say, "Imagine what it would look like if we saw it in the daylight."  Shudder!  I'm glad we never did!

I'm up to the first D.A. meeting at the Hog's Head in OotP right now.  ;-)  The floor that seemed to be a dirt floor until Harry realized it was a stone floor that hadn't been cleaned, perhaps, for centuries.  The windows so encrusted with grime that they don't let light in anymore.  The creaking sign that showed a severed wild boar head leaking blood onto a white cloth.  Ugh!  ;-)  And then the other students arrive, in one of JKR's moments of pure writing that most readers seem to forget about when we think of the HP series:

The door of the pub had opened.  A thick band of dusty sunlight split the room in two for a moment and then vanished, blocked by the incoming rush of a crowd of people.


Favorite non-Rickman Snape fan art?

Hi there, folks!  Which fan artists do Snapes that are not WB/Rickmanesque?  I am pondering a fan art gallery show in conjunction with promoting my Snape book next year.  :-)  I haven't paid much attention to fan art, but tqoh suggested this idea and I love it.


I felted a wombat.

Busy day of parenting.  All I want to do is work on my Snape book.  I did, however, manage to felt a crocheted wombat this morning while I was doing the hot wash.


So. Snape and... who else?

I've delivered talks on Snape alone, but also his relationships to specific characters within the HP series.  I'm currently doing the preliminary work on a talk on Snape and Sirius in canon -- wow, they parallel each other in some pretty profound ways.  I've never thought deeply about Sirius before, partly because it's almost too painful to think about a life destroyed by wrongful imprisonment.  But meanwhile, here are the "Snape and" talks I've written so far:

And I'm planning to write also about

  • Snape and Dumbledore

  • Snape and McGonagall

  • Snape and Voldemort

Any other "Snape and" pairings I ought to do?


Aw. Harry does learn in his fourth year.

I hadn't registered before that Harry actually gets over his procrastination issues during fourth year.  He gets saved by Crouch!Moody and Dobby for his first two tasks, but for the third, "he was confident that, this time, he had done everything in his power to prepare for the task."  Huh!  :-)  That makes me happy.  Good thing for JKR to show.

And then the very next paragraph has one of the sweetest details from the series:  "Breakfast was a very noisy affair at the Gryffindor table on the morning of the third task.  The post owls appeared, bringing Harry a good-luck card from Sirius.  It was only a piece of parchment, folded over and bearing a muddy paw print on its front, but Harry appreciated it all the same."  Awwwww.  <3  Why is this not more of a thing in HP fan art?  I love the thought of a paw print greeting card that says "Good luck on your task"!



drinking chocolate

Latest Month

November 2015



RSS Atom
Powered by LiveJournal.com
Designed by Tiffany Chow