Saturday, October 23, 2010

thoughts on harry potter

As I'm sure you know, I have spent the last 2.5 months re-reading the Harry Potter series. It took a while to get started... things kept getting in the way like ordering the first book on amazon and having it never arrive.... going to SEVERAL bookstores before I actually was able to find a copy for some reason... but I started around the time we moved into our current apartment and I've been reading a couple chapters a night.

This was my first re-reading of the series. I think I had read parts of Half-Blood Prince before the 7th book came out, but I am pretty sure I only read the entire book once. Most of these books I hadn't read since 2005, the last I hadn't read since 2007. It was definitely the right time. I had forgotten enough to be surprised and appreciate the humor while KNOWING enough to look for clues in the earlier books.

The first 2 were, you know, fine. I have suddenly found myself surrounded by people my age or slightly younger who have not read these books at all (SERIOUSLY??? How is it POSSIBLE??) and when I am telling them to get started I say, "Read the first 2 as fast as you can. The third book is where it picks up. The fourth is one of the best books ever." I definitely appreciate PoA (the 3rd book) a lot more now than I did. I always thought it was GOOD but now I'm kind of thinking it's amazing.

In regards to Goblet of Fire (or book 4), the first time I read that book, when Cedric died in the graveyard and Harry's parents (etc, all) came out of Voldemort's wand, I literally threw the book across the room. I was late for work that day because I could not stop reading. I did not THROW the book this time. I did cry.

The fifth book is pretty much the same for me as it was before.... long and hard to get through. I despise Umbridge SO MUCH that it's actually torturous. The first time I read this book it was nearly impossible for me to accept Sirius's death. I didn't realize the killing curse, though never actually WRITTEN in the book, was implied, so I didn't know what happened to him to make him die, and I thought, like Harry, that he'd be back any moment. I loved Sirius so much. He was one of my favorite characters. His death is one of the hardest to take in the series.

I definitely had a minor emotional break down when Snape killed Dumbledore in the 6th book, which I read surprisingly fast. The last 3 books are so effing long, but they're so well done that I would spend all my free alone time just reading on the couch until Chris got home. That's what I did tonight to finish the 7th book.

Now, again, I had not read this book since 2007 and what you have to understand is that I read it SO FAST and like, in the middle of the NIGHT when I was already exhausted from being in rehearsal all the time, that I did not take in everything that happened. It was practically like I was reading it for the first time, just knowing that several people would die and that Harry was a Horcrux. I kept saying that summer that I needed to go back and reread parts... that, obviously, never happened.

Let me tell you.... I had completely, 100%, forgotten about the Deathly Hallows. THAT IS THE TITLE OF THE BOOK. Not remembering ANYTHING about them, I was, at times, talking to the book. Telling Harry moot instructions that I literally was guessing at because I couldn't remember! I looked back at my old blog and read that I didn't really understand them in my haste to get through it... I don't know why. Not only did they make sense, but they are AMAZING!!!! The thing she does that I love the MOST is when she makes the Wizarding world seem possible in OUR world. Like taking everyday things like saying an old shoe on the side of the road is actually a portkey or a children's story having it's history based on fact (like the deathly hallows).... I just love that crap. Her imagination in amazing.

I did not beat the ground with my fists when Tonks and Lupin died this time. I knew it was coming and, actually, I remembered it being more climactic than it is. However, I totally forgot that Lupin almost ran out on Tonks and that they asked Harry to be the godfather. I had forgotten that Dobby died. DOBBY. I moaned, "Dobby, nooooooooooooo" as I closed the book and cried. I had forgotten about Moody's death. I had forgotten about that creepy scene where Nagini is actually that old lady, Bathilda Bagshot or whatever. I had forgotten the extent to which Snape loved Lily.

When Snape's dying words to Harry are, "Look..." so he can see HER eyes again.

How he begged Voldemort to save her.... how she was his Patronus.... it's hard to bear. It's hard to imagine that poor man's life of unrequited love and helping Harry because she was his mother's child.

But, again, the most poignant moment to me is still when Harry asks Dumbledore if the purgatory world is real or if it's just in his head and Dumbledore replies, "Of course is is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?"

A second reading of this line brought back memories of Narnia. Of so much spirituality. Of having my own crazy imagination that, at times, feels muffled.

So, despite the fact that I love it when Mrs. Weasley calls Bellatrix a bitch right before killing her, the previous line resonated with me more.

When I finished the book and wiped away the tears, I stood up and practically hugged it saying, "I'll miss you, Harry Potter." I just can't wait to share it with more people.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

spooooky times are approaching

Well, it's been a month. I thought about writing but then I never would. Typical.

We just got back from Virginia and Ginna's wedding on Monday. I had been looking forward to this wedding for so long it was almost unbelievable that it was actually there. It was perfect. Ginna looked AMAZING and everything was very fun and original. She asked us to sing Maria Taylor's Cartoons and Forever Plans and that went well, too. I was so happy to be involved. I had never been involved in a wedding besides my own before this one! I think that's CRAZY for a singer who is almost 28!

Jenny made Ginna's dress, too, and it was literally a piece of art. People ACTUALLY screamed as she entered the room. Jenny has made 3 dresses in the past year and has at least 2 more coming up that I know about. Here is a sample of what she's done.

That's obviously me in the first picture, our friend Denice from the ASC in the second and Ginna and her dad in the last picture. All completely different, yet completely beautiful. Ginna's dress was also a CONVERTIBLE dress! The bottom part of the skirt came off for her party time. People literally screamed. It was amazing. It has actually taken this long for the full weight of the dress to sink in for me. I told Jenny every time I see a picture I faint a little bit. It's kind of true. I am really looking forward to seeing the professional pictures.

So, clearly, I had a great time at the wedding. The day after we got home we got a save the date for another wedding in Staunton (Johnston and Lindsey... who have been engaged since 2008! Also, let me just say... their engagement was the best day of MY life. It was right after ours and I lost it in the middle of the street when they told me. I had also PREDICTED it in the shower that morning, which was weird, because they had only been dating like 6 months when it happened) and I'm pretty sure Tyler and Sybille are also getting married in Staunton, so we'll be back before you know it. I need to start a wedding trip fund. For real.

I would also like to say that Ginna's family is so amazing. Her parents are some of the nicest people I have ever met and her sister Kelly is just a doll. What a lucky, lucky lady to have such wonderful people in her life.

So! Other news. Well, I found out 2 of my friends are dating and have been for SIX MONTHS, and I had no idea. This isn't like an "I found out on facebook after having not seen either of them in years" thing, either. This is a "I literally see them several times a week, had seen them TOGETHER, and still had no idea" thing. I was thinking about asking my friend Lyndsay if she was seeing anyone that day, because we had never really talked about it, and then I found out that night, in the surprise of the century. Then, of course, I had so many questions... only one of which I actually asked. I am really happy about it, though. They're both so nice and it's always great when nice people get together.

My birthday is coming up really soon. It is actually only 2.5 weeks away!!! BOOOOOOOOOO!!! I am still only half decorated. I got busy. Too busy to write and too busy to decorate. Of course, I STARTED decorating on September 30th at like 10:30pm..... I just haven't done much since then. I am planning on going to a couple of Halloween stores tonight after my rockababy classes. I can't buy anything, but I am planning on dragging Chris around them for a very spooky adventure. In a store. I am so broke until I get paid tomorrow it isn't even funny. Seriously, it's not at all funny. Don't laugh at the fact that I have only $10 left. I had a lot to buy at the end of the month, like train tickets to Staunton. Luckily, I get paid tomorrow and Friday so at least I'll have money for cereal again. Sadly, I foresee lots of being broke in my future with Thanksgiving and Christmas coming up.

The price of the metro cards is going up FIFTEEN DOLLARS on January 1st and that makes me want to cry. I won't really cry, but it is depressing. You know WHY I ride the subway? To get to work. Now I have to work MORE just to make up for the fact that my transportation TO WORK is more expensive. Grumble. This is why every place of employment in NYC should offer their employees a debit card where half the amount of the card is taken out of each paycheck pre-tax, so they can buy the card. Chris's job does that. Every single job should. I have been saving my metro card receipts all year so that I can write them off on my taxes. Stupid metro card. BLAH.