It was a Thursday afternoon, my friends and I were waiting for the class to begin as we were discussing out Pottermore’s Hogwart’s House assignment. My friend who had yet taken the test by the o-glorious Sorting Hat claimed that she’s positive she will be a Hufflepuff. Another one were proudly announcing that she’s a Slytherin. Then the two of them suggest another friend to join Pottermore in order to take the Sorting Hat quiz, assuring her that she’s ‘totally a Ravenclaw’ which my friend were excited about. Before I admit myself being sorted a Gryffindor, my Hufflepuff-per-sé friend said that “Good thing we’re not Gryffindors! They are soo boring!” Being the supposedly brave character that I was destined – or um, sorted into, I tried to neutralize the conversation that everyone is special as they are despite their assortment. In a Divergent-esque argument, I said that you can be ambitious, resourceful, brave and be knowledgeable at the same time to ease the tension in a true Hufflepuff fashion (ha! Ironic). I was ashamed that I cannot bravely pronounce that I am a Gryffindor at the time.
“But still, Gryffindor sucks. They had always been perceived as a hero as if we are nothing.” Now, this looks more like a political analysis by the left wing, but I cannot say that they were wrong. J.K. Rowling, a Hufflepuff, had written the book beautifully but only in the perspective of a Gryffindor. They are valued for whatever charm (not a pun to Professor Flitwick’s Charms class) they have that is carried out their bravery while other characters from other houses seemed one-dimensional. The friendship circle was also seen as if each circle belongs only exclusively to one house while inter-house friendship is overshadowed by the great amount of rivalry between the houses in getting their name recognized for the House Cup.
I’ve only read the Harry Potter series last year, I finished the seven books in a month nearing my mid-term tests. I had always been a fan of the franchise, I watched the fourth to the last movie on the first day of its release in Indonesia – but nowhere as devoted as other Potterheads which I respect and admire. Prior to the official test on Pottermore, I always saw myself as a Ravenclaw due to my nerdiness
and strike of elegance. I always saw Gryffindor as the vaguest house on the book; anyone can be brave due to different circumstances and on different times. But qualities like being knowledgeable, loyal and ambitious seemed like an eternal quality that makes the owner stand out. Gryffindor character seemed interchangeable as their bravery seemed to be a temporary struggle. We never see a Ravenclaw struggling to learn, a Slytherin self-doubting, and a Hufflepuff questioning the value of loyalty. But they can all be brave.
As a Gryffindor, I haven’t seen myself and my bravery being my greatest characteristic of power. But everyone can be a hero by their own terms regardless their House background, and sticking to the stereotype can only limit your mind. Maybe this is just a test as old as the Myers-Briggs, or really it is a true test of your potential. But don’t treat Gryffindor any less as we don’t want to be treated more. Or maybe the rest are just jealous of many of us taking the spotlight.
(P.S. My Hufflepuff friend taught me that lame pun)