Books, Children's Literature, Harry Potter Moment of the Week, Movies, YA

Harry Potter Moment of the Week #43

HPMOTW (2)

This is a meme started by Uncorked Thoughts which aims to share with fellow bloggers a weekly slice of HP awesomeness. It is an awesomeness that only increases with time and number of reads. Once a week we will share a character, spell, chapter, object, quote etc. from the books/films/J. K. Rowling (or anything Potter related)! Each topic will be posted on Uncorked Thoughts HERE. There will also be  free weeks where everyone can share whatever topic they want! Be sure to share your link on the main site for all other HP MOTW fans to enjoy!

This Week’s Theme: What was your Favorite Lupin Moment?

There are a lot of great moments for the character of Remus Lupin. He’s such a wonderful person, and I appreciated that all of his struggles just served to make him a more giving person. From the moment he enters Harry’s life, Lupin is a calming influence, and he genuinely cares about his well-being.

lupin and harry 1So the “moment” I picked as my favorite is actually a series of small moments between Lupin and Harry. They are quieter moments when Lupin finds Harry in some kind of mental or emotional turmoil, and he gives him some kind of piece of mind.

“Wait a moment, Harry,” Lupin called. “I’d like a word.”

Harry doubled back and watched Professor Lupin covering the hinkypunk’s box with a cloth.

“I heard about the match,” said Lupin, turning back to his desk and starting to pile books into his briefcase, “and I’m sorry about your broomstick. Is there any chance of fixing it?”

lupin and Harry 3“No,” said Harry. “The tree smashed it to bits.”

Lupin sighed. (Prisoner of Azkaban, 186)   . . .

“Did you hear about the dementors too?” said Harry with difficulty.

Lupin looked at him quickly.

“Yes, I did. I don’t think any of us have seen Professor Dumbledore that angry. They ave been growing restless for some time… furious at his refusal to let them inside the grounds. … I suppose they were the reason you fell?”

“Yes,” said Harry. He hesitated, and then the question he had to ask burst from him before he could stop himself. “Why? Why do they affect me like that? Am I just –?”

“It has nothing to do with weakness,” said Professor Lupin sharply, as though he had read Harry’s mind. “The dementors affect you worse than the others because there are horrors in your past that the others don’t have.” (186-187)

Lupin and Harry 2“You made the dementor on the train back off,” said Harry suddenly.

“There are — certain defenses one can use,” said Lupin. “But there was only one dementor on the train. The more there are, the more difficult it becomes to resist.”

“What defenses?” said Harry at once. “Can you teach me?”

“I don’t pretend to be an expert on fighting dementors, Harry… quite the contrary. …”

“But if the dementors come to another Quidditch match, I need to be able to fight them –”

“Lupin looked at Harry’s determined face, hesitated, then said, “Well … all right. I’ll try and help. But it’ll have to wait until next term, I’m afraid. I have a lot to do before the holidays. I chose a very inconvenient time to fall ill.” (188-189)

Lupin is, with so few words, able to give Harry more piece of mind than he is able to find on his own. Harry’s dealing with events so beyond what a 13-year-old should have to deal with and Lupin not only gives him comfort with words but also the physical tools to build back his confidence and adjust to these overwhelming situations. He also gives Harry his first real, tangible connection to his parents, something he’s wanted desperately. So those moments between the two of them, where he finds that connection, are my favorite. I also think that in some way these scenes gives Lupin that same feeling of connection and belonging, which he’s seldom experienced since he lost all of his old friends.

Runner Up for Favorite Moment:

Lupin riddikulus

I think the third year class taking on a boggart might have been one of everybody’s favorite scenes because it was so much fun. Lupin was the first professor that showed us as an audience and his students that Defense Against the Dark Arts could be fun as well as a learning experience. Not that he was ever really unsafe with them. I always enjoyed how well he did as a teacher. He walked the right line between understanding the seriousness behind the course with also making the students feel good about the learning process.

Well, that’s really all I’ve got for ya! Just a small moment of sweet HP goodness! I hope you enjoyed it, and please, feel free to share your own thoughts on what your favorite Lupin moment in the comments below!

50 Day Movie Challenge, Movies

50 Day Movie Challenge: Day 6

My 50 Day Movie Challenge is off and running!

Day 6! For those just tuning in, on other sites I’ve seen bloggers do 20, or 30 day challenges all about movies, so I decided to mash up a bunch of those questions and came up with 50 that I’m going to attempt to answer consecutively over the next month and a half (or so). If you’d like to try and do it too, feel free! I’ll post all the questions as I go along, and I hope you enjoy my answers!

Day 6: Pick a movie that reminds you of somewhere.

Originally when I considered this question, I was thinking of a movie like Under the Tuscan Sun. It’s so vividly and completely IncrediblesTuscany and there are parts where I look (especially the shots of Florence) and go, “I was there!”, “I remember that square!” But the movie itself doesn’t really remind me of my experience somewhere. I’ve been to quite a few places in my time, but usually I don’t associate those places with something like a film. But then when I really thought about it, I remembered The Incredibles.

I first saw The Incredibles almost a decade ago now, during my undergraduate semester overseas. I was with my best friend and we were spending the weekend in Strasbourg, France with a very good friend of my family. He was so excited for our visit, showing us many of the beautiful sights in and around the city. On the morning of our arrival, while we settled in, he asked if we had ever watched this movie, which I hadn’t. We decided to check it out, and, like many other Pixar films, it was really enjoyable! It was a great way to relax after traveling and made me feel a little more at home. Our explorations of the city that weekend are some of my most treasured memories, and my family friend really gave us a great sense of the city, its’ history and people.

Now, whenever I think about The Incredibles, I think back to when I first saw it, and it makes me smile. My visit really had nothing to do with the movie, but it was part of some memories that left such and impression on me, and now I can’t think of one, without remembering the other.

So there you have it. Day 6: set!

 

Music

The Song Remembers When

So, the Daily Post on WordPress gives these handy little prompts to me on a (you guessed it!) daily basis, and the prompt from a few days ago caught my eye:

Daily Prompt: Always Something There to Remind Me

A song comes on the radio and instantly, you’re transported to a different time and place. Which song(s) bring back memories for you and why? Be sure to mention the song, and describe the memory it evokes.

Photographers, artists, poets: show us PAST.
_________

Music Notes

I really like this topic. There are a couple of songs that for me, evoke strong memories, some fun, some a little more melancholy. It’s really interesting to think of all the ways that our senses can bring memories back to life. Whenever I smell pipe tobacco, so sharp and sweet, I think of my Grandpa Joe – my grandmother’s second husband. He passed away before I turned 8. Though I can’t remember what he looks like without the aid of a picture, and I can’t remember more about his personality other than a general sense of kindness, I can’t help but think of those things whenever I get a whiff of pipe tobacco. I’m 29, so I think I can say I’ve lived for a pretty good chunk of time. But I don’t remember a whole lot of my childhood anymore. Not in a tactile way. When I really try to think about it, I have flashes of moments, but mostly what I get is a general sense of the people and I see them as they are now, as they look now, rather than being able to remember they way they looked back when. I can’t tell anymore how much of my memories are real, and how much are based on the stories my parents and extended family have retold over the years. Scents and music help.

I will never be able to listen to country music without thinking of my dad. Certain artists bring back the memories of the concerts he took me to as a kid (because I was the only one of his 4 girls who wasn’t too cool to listen to country music out in public). Shania Twain, Garth Brooks, Patty Lovelace, I hear them and I am transported back to the stands we sat in, the beloved cowboy boots I got for my birthday, and the feeling that I was sharing something special with him. Something just for the two of us.

Specific Memories:
Single "How Bizarre" by OMC
Single “How Bizarre” by OMC

Single –  “How Bizarre” by OMC

Debuted in February 1997 and bumped its way up to number 1 on the US Billboard Mainstream Top 40.

Album "Spice" by the Spice Girls
Album “Spice” by the Spice Girls

Album – “Spice” by The Spice Girls

Also debuting in February 1997, Spice was released in U.S., and it became the biggest-selling album of 1997, peaking at number one and being certified 7x Platinum with sales in excess of 7.4 million copies. The album is also included in the Top 100 Albums of All Time list of The Recording Industry Association of America. In total, the album sold 28 million copies and became the biggest-selling album in the music history by an all-female group.

The songs of the Spice Girls album and the single “How Bizarre” remind me of spending time with my sisters as a child/pre-teen. We liked to hang around my house, typically in the living room, listening to music on the radio or on cassette tapes (yeah, we still had those and we were constantly looking for music to make mixes). But we would find songs that we knew, grab our hairbrushes or other microphone-esque objects and sing and dance along to the Top 40. With the Spice Girls, we memorized as many of their dance moves as possible and took turns being lead vocals on their various songs. Hearing “How Bizarre” now makes me smile because one of my sisters recorded it and we would often play the song on fast forward (something most music players now-a-days are not capable of) because when you played it that way it sounded like Alvin and the Chipmunks were singing. I remember cracking up listening to it that way.

A Special Song…

On a more somber note, one song in particular that comes to mind when I think about music carrying memories is “Go Rest High On That Mountain” by Vince Gill. It was released years ago, back in 1995, right around the time that my Uncle Stephen passed away. It was written in honor of Vince Gill’s brother who had also died around that time. I have always been a big fan of his, and so is my dad. As a birthday present one year, I got us tickets to his concert. Before the show, my dad told me some stories about my uncle and my grandfather, and he told me that “Go Rest High On That Mountain” was the song he associated with his brother.

Thinking of my uncle; his life, and what I’ve learned about him as I grew up, I thought it was especially appropriate. That concert was (and is), for me, the best show I’ve ever been to. And when he played that song, I’m pretty sure it made the both of us cry. Now, when I hear it, I think about my uncle. Who he was, the hardships that he endured in his life, and also my memories of him. Watching Star Wars or How the Grinch Stole Christmas during the holidays, hearing him call me Agnes (his nickname for me), and even sitting at his memorial being angry that I wasn’t allowed to go to his funeral (I was considered ‘too young to understand’). I’m not a terribly religious person, I don’t think I really believe in a Heaven or an afterlife; but hearing this song, for a few moments, it’s like he’s there with me. Those opening chords make me smile and those moments are a connection. For me, that’s enough.