Similar to many 90s babies, I too credit J.K. Rowling for sparking my love of reading. One fateful day in 2001, my eldest sister sat me down with Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Little did she know that that one act would turn her youngest sibling into a raving Potterhead.
Since, I’ve lived and breathed anything HP-related. I read the series countless times, I held debates with my siblings over why the order of birth should not be taken into consideration when deciding who gets to read the newest release first, I dropped references into everyday conversations, I memorized the spells, and so much more.
So, whether your love (read: obsession) is anything like mine or not, here are 23 signs of an absolute Potterhead.
1. You’ve read the series multiple times
This one’s a given. After all, why would a Potterhead deprive themselves of any chance to jump back into the world of witchcraft and wizardry?
2. You’ve also read the three supplementary titles that were released
3. You’ve read, and perhaps written, your own fanfiction
From one-shots and full-fledged novels spanning crossovers, AUs and continuation arcs, the Internet is rich with Harry Potter fanfiction. You’ll find every ship – Jily, Dramione, Drarry, Luneville, and Hinny – sailing, and perhaps have even set sail to your own.
4. You know your acceptance letter was lost in the mail
As magical as it is, owl mail isn’t exactly all that reliable. So yeah, definitely lost, yep. No other reason at all. Please, don’t @ me.
5. Yet, despite never attending Hogwarts, you know which House you belong to
The closest you can get to an official Sorting is this quiz on Pottermore. Though deep down, you know you’re more of a mix – Ravendor? Griffinpuff? Slytherclaw? You know yourself.
6. You often wonder what you would see in the Mirror of Erised
Receiving your letter? Ending patriarchy? A massive Potterhead convention? Perhaps some wool socks? Fun fact: Erised is Desire spelled backwards.
7. You’ve tested out your broom for other capabilities besides sweeping
It’s not you who’s not magic, it’s the broom. Let’s stick to using it as a guitar for now.
8. You’ve tried to speak Parseltongue
Haashhaaaasssss… maybe Duolingo will add in a course down the line. There are definitely enough Potterheads in the world to get a petition going.
9. You’ve had Duels (and you’ve kicked ass!)
Personal favorites of mine include stupefy, petrificus totalus, and expelliarmus. The Unforgivable Curses are a big no-no in my Duelling Club.
10. The Battle of Hogwarts still has you bawling like a baby
“And Percy was shaking his brother, and Ron was kneeling beside them, and Fred’s eyes stared without seeing, the ghost of his last laugh still etched upon his face.” *heaving sobs*
11. You’ve had lengthy, passionate discussions with other Potterheads on the symbolism of the series
Did Hedwig’s death symbolize the end of Harry’s innocence? Do different wand woods hold special meaning? Things get pretty heated up in the Potterhead forums.
12. You’re a calm and rational pe – WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU HAVEN’T READ HARRY POTTER?
It’s unfathomable. What have these people been doing with their lives?
13. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child doesn’t exist for you
Similar to the Ministry of Magic’s refusal to believe in Voldemort in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, you too refuse to acknowledge the existence of That Which Must Not Be Named. Just, no. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was the last instalment of that series – all was, and is, well.
14. You’ve had, and crushed, a Harry Potter movie marathon
Don on your robes and grab all the butterbeer and chocolate frogs, because you’re not moving off this seat for the next 20 hours.
15. This scene both amuses and irritates you
To this day, I still question Michael Gambon’s definition of calm. I also wonder why no one on set went “Hey Mikey! Soooo, the book says Dumbledore said these words calmly…?”
16. You’re still holding out for the TV show
17. You know the fan theories and have a few of your own
Neville was bad at magic because he was using his father’s wand, and not one which chose him. Crookshanks was the Potters’ cat. J.K. is actually Rita Skeeter. And Harry Potter is immortal – there are hundreds of theories floating.
18. You’ve searched out the toughest HP-themed trivia quizzes, and aced them
I’m talking deep, obscure trivia like knowing that there are 142 staircases in Hogwarts, that 700 fouls can be made in Quidditch, and who Wilkie Twycross is (Apparition Instructor).
19. Hence, you’re the designated expert in your group.
Oh, so you’d like to know how to make a Polyjuice Potion? Simple! All you need is lacewing files, leeches, powdered Bicorn horn, knotgrass, fluxweed, shredded Boomslang skin, and a bit of the person you want to turn into.
20. What’s a Potterhead without their swag?
I’m talking pajamas, socks, scarves, hoodies, candles, notebooks, pillows, bedspreads, mugs… there’s no such thing as “too much merch”.
21. There’s no question as to what your kids’ bedtime stories will be
Between the canon works and fanfiction, there is enough material to carry you all the way to their adolescence.
22. You’ve hosted Harry Potter-themed parties
Do you have a Pinterest board pinned with said themed ideas? DIY-decor, baked treats, posters… because I do.
23. You consider the entire series as self-help
You wouldn’t be a Potterhead if your life hadn’t changed after reading the series, and it’s a guarantee that you picked up some life lessons along the way.
There are many gems to pick from, but my top two include: “Anything is possible if you’ve got enough nerve,” and “it does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.”