Monday, July 18, 2005

Perpendiculars, maybe

Alright this will be my last Potter-themed post for some time. I'm splitting reading duties between the Jones book and this new H.Po, which sort of loses it's standing as a "children's" novel when you use the word "enumerate" on the first page. I only learned what that word meant studying discrimination cases in first year law school.

As for the rest of the book, so far, so good. I don't know if reviews have picked up on this, because I've avoided them thus far, but the book certainly has a post-9/11 bent. When a book begins with a Prime Minister dealing with attacks in London and encourages being suspicious of those around you, I can't be faulted for drawing parallels.

Regardless of its significance or popularity, I like the Potter books because. as one who studied at a castle, I mildly identify with him. (That, and from my birth, I've had this burning scar and been referred to as The Boy Who Lived.) Herstmonceux Castle was home to some of the best times I had in undergrad.

Interestingly, UBC law school, like others, offers the castle as an exchange alternative. Naturally I'd recommend it for anyone who likes travelling England and not immediately averse to Renaissance fairs.

Furthermore, I'd offer the same sage advice I learned whilst abroad: avoid the venison sausages, (and unless you like a culinary texture approaching leather, avoid sausages entirely), there's a reason it's called a moat and not a pool, and finally, don't take too long in British showers. English bathroom lights are on a motion sensor/timer and while cleanliness is next to godliness, too much is next to blindness.

I did briefly consider doing another exchange while at law school, perhaps some Antipodean institution, or a Scandinavian university, but as one who recently lived/survived in Kingston, Vancouver is like a vacation in itself.

(Any of you castle folks read this blog? Besides you AB, I know you read this religiously).


Anonymous said...

Oh Ryan, what tried-and-true Herstmonceux veteran DOESN'T waste his or her time mindlessly perusing blogs?
On a related note, the Castle-boy and I just returned from Halifax, where we had an awesome reunion with Steve Traves, Colin Taylor, and binge drinking (three beers, five dollars! I love the East Coast!)
Back on topic, I too feel a more potent connection with the H-po since my trip to East Sussex. If only we'd had a Dumbledore... (no, Maine doesn't count, though his supernatural abilities are worthy of suspicion...)
I'm curious to see who else reads this!

Anonymous said...

Deb and Ryan, as a fellow castle-goer, I feel I must also contribute to this nostalgia.

I recently returned to the castle while doing a teaching placement in London and discovered that there is one place on earth that never changes...and that's the ISC. There will forever be rowdy discussions with profs in the Headless Drummer, unidentifiable food in the Dining Hall and even a little karaoke in the Elizabethan Room...oh Christian...

I too can identify with your connection to Harry Potter since spending time in 1066 Country. I wonder if J.K. Rowling secretly turns to Francesca for inspiration...hmmm...