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Questions for Assholes

Just what the hell is your damage with grownups reading Harry Potter anyhow? Just because you are so stuck in the mud of adulthood that you have no desire to visit the wonders of magic, childhood and fantasy again doesn't mean you have to be a jackass about it to those of us who aren't as stone faced as you.

And you, the one who thinks NO ONE should read Potter books because they're rubbish or whatnot, why do you feel the need to try and crush someone's enjoyment just because it's not something you like? Oh, excuuuuuse meeeeeeee, Mr. Superior Intellect, Judgment, Taste and Culture. I forgot how much better a person you are than I. I bow to your refined nature. Jackass.

I started to write a novel lenght thing on why some adults like to read these books and why some adults like to behave like children and sneer at anyone who reads the books, but decided to just go with this instead, because it eats up less of my valuable time that could be spent READING HARRY POTTER.

And what is with people going into internet forums and blurting out the key plot twists in the book? Holy hell. You people deserve to be beaten severely, not for spoiling the ending, but just for being really shitty human beings.

Tolerance level for people in general is at DEFCON 1.


Amen. I'm a couple of hundred pages in, and am enjoying myself immensely. I'd add to your list of those who should be flogged the following groups of people:

(1) People who brag about how quickly they read it (got it at 1:30, done by dinner). Well, bully for you, dipwad. Wht's your point, exactly? It is, after all, a book for children.

(2) People who go into comment sections and ask who died - "I'm too high and mightly to actually deign to read this piece of popular trash, but I'd like to know this key spoiler." People I otherwise respect are doing this. Granted, they say they want it by e-mail, but some nimrod is going to respond online, and I'm going to see it, so I've decided to stay away from Potter discussion until I finish the book.

This post is puerile. Perhaps if you spent more time reading Umberto Eco and less time reading silly children's books, you'd write less puerile posts.


Or Proust. Not that I expect you to even know who Proust is, what with the aforementioned puerility.




Bill, you plebe. You should be reading Ayn Rand.

That being said, I hated that you found out that the real Death Eaters were actually zombies. And finishing the book with a cliffhanger that left both Ron and Hermione infected... sheesh.

Seriously, I have the book and will not be able to read it until September. I'll have to stop reading all forums for two months to keep anything from being spoiled.

I gotta do it:
Tolerance level for people in general is at DEFCON 1.

Soylent Green is....!

(I'll just nip off to the corner to take my beating...Oh, and Bill? Get back on the Hippie beat...jeez, next thing you know, you're gonna consider yourself a "CITIZEN JOURNALIST".)

[Admin note: The person who left this comment left a main spoiler here. As a blogger, the person is probably aware that IPs are recorded. And this IP happens to come up as the same person who left a comment here yesterday. I will out you unless you apologize. You've got five minutes.]

But Bill, my next post is going to be a tribute to Richard Brautigan!

Oh, I forgot...

For the record, if I would have to pick between Ayn Rand and Harry Potter or face being shot, I'd inquire about the caliber of the weapon.

Bo, who the fuck CARES?

I'm with Bo.... I may just bite that bullet and be done with it.

But only if INDC "Gobsmacker!" goes first.
(I'm calling Ace...it's over, Beltway Boy!)

My only issue was that you were trying to read the whole thing in one day. Hello? Three more years to wait? Are you mad?!

sorry- im a fucking idiot.

So I accidentally hit F5 instead of F4 on my keyboard, and this screen refreshed. I couldn't help but read a couple of comments right below mine.

As someone who never curses, let me just say:

Fuck. Thanks a lot, asshole.

Not only are you a fucking idiot, but you are BANNED. Holy hell, that was really fucking asstastic of you. I still have the urge to out you and let everyone know who you are and where your blog is, just because it was such a cunty thing to do. I just might, yet.

I didn't see the spoiler, but I can't resist the chance to berate someone; so here goes:

You're a fuckwad.

I know, I'm lacking a little inspiration this morning. At least I'm not a fuckwad eh?

Michele did you see last night's episode of save me? They merged twat and cunt into one mega-insult: 'Twunt' or it's partner in 'cwat'.

Wow. Pissed off the LI chick.

Like that only took something above a nudge...

(yes, I know..back in my cage...but Billy still needs biting.


The saddest thing in the world would be Steve Tyler buying the large print version of Harry Potter, because he's so old, and reading it to Liv Tyler because she's illiterate.

No, no. I think the saddest thing in the world was that comment.


With a "."

Sorry, but I stayed up until 1:30 reading the book, a point not that impressive to my 2 year old when she insisted on waking up and stuff.

Anything that can convince anyone to read full-length novels in this day and age is AOK by me...

Knowing that even posting this comment may mean I, by extension, am an asshole...

I don't care what people read; If you enjoy it, go for it. From time to time I envy people with the patience to read novels. That you find riveting and enjoyable must be even more rewarding to you. I almost always loose interest after the first 60 or 70 pages of any novel; but that's just me and, perhaps, my loss.

I do find it unusual, however, when I hear of parents taking youngsters (pre-teens and younger) to midnight parties at B&N and the like; the kids can't wait until 9AM the next day? Talk about instant gratification. These parents might be the grown children whose mothers were in fist-fights over Cabbage Patch dolls 25 years ago.

And then Steve Tyler gets so old he becomes totally blind. He's in the hospital because he broke his hip falling off a stage when he attempted a wicked shimmy, and Liv visits him just after the very newest Harry Potter book comes out. Steve has to tell her he can't read it to her because he's blind now, and Liv says "Don't fret, Dad, I learned to read just so I could sit at your bedside and read the the new Harry Potter book to you."

Charlie, it's not about the instant gratification at all. It's just fun. Sometimes things are just about FUN.

Terry, if they start having sex, I'm banning you.

Jeez, I just dipped back in here....

do I need a towel?

I read a lot of what some people would call "high brow" literature. I've also read all the HP books. I'm reading the new too. I think they're great, fun books. I like it--so fucking sue me.

The real question is why anybody gives a shit if I read it or not.

I do think you should out the person mentioned above. Nothing to do with HP, I just like the thought of "outing" someone for something. Anything.

Charlie, it's not about the instant gratification at all. It's just fun. Sometimes things are just about FUN.

Then call me the bad parent (and asshole, if you wish).

I feel nothing but pity for these folks. It must suck to be so old and bitter.


Charlie- surely you can see a difference between having a child excited about being able to read a new book on its release and being excited over a doll?

Whether one cares for the Potter books or not (I happen to be one who does), you've got to have respect for a phenomenon that has kids and adults excited about reading.

Solonor! You sweet idiot!

Come to the Darkside

Screwed that up...
"come to the the Darkside

We're Yoda-free!

But Liv is getting along in years too, and she's forgotten her reading glasses, or so she says, in fact she was lying about taking reading lessons. Then Joe Perry stops by the hospital room and offers to borrow Liv his reading glasses. Caught flat footed Liv takes the glasses, picks up the book upside down and "reads" it to Steve Tyler. Steve's heart gives a couple hiccups and he goes to that great, back stage party in the sky hearing a story about the adventures of a golden haired, hunky Harry Potter and Hermione, his elf-princess girlfriend.

DEFCON 1, huh? If you were armed with some nucular missles I'd worry. With an inflatable Yankee bat and Harry Potter book, not so much.

I don't really have anything to add to the discussion, this place is just more fun to be around when you're pissed. And when the Yankees get your hopes up.


Looking forward to finishing the book. I've only read the first and the last chapter.

My family doesn't understand me, they kept trying to grab the book out of my hands so I couldn't read the end. Kiljoys.

Amen Michele.

Oh, and I'm sure we'd all like to know who the cockwad was that ruined the ending for several folks. Being a shithead for the sake of being a shithead should have consequences.

Ack, I'm afraid to read through the comments very quickly - I'm afraid I'll find something out! Add me to the list of those reading HP (I set aside Atlas Shrugged to read it.)

It's excellent that people read and enjoy HP so much. Even though I never got into the books myself, I can't imagine being such a tightass as to begrudge other people the pleasure. Besides, every literature snob reads something "lowbrow." Anyone who curses HP fans is no doubt hiding Danielle Steele books in the closet.

However. The two 20-something nitwits at my office who spent the better part of Friday one-upping each other for valuable HP Loyalty Points, can STFU. "I'm going to B&N at 10:00". "Well, I'm going at 9:30. "Oh? Well I read the entire last book in 15 minutes." Gag.

Hey...if they had had "midnight release parties" for whatever series of books I was into when I was a kid, I would have BEGGED my parents to take me to them.

Yeah, fine, so the kids are wiped out and maybe a little cranky the next day - so what, it's summer. There's something really super special when you're a kid with a normal bedtime to be allowed to stay up late to do something fun...it makes it funner. And hey, if when they're 30 they think back to that time they got to go to the bookstore at midnight, and just how cool that was...it's more memorable than going to the bookstore at 10 am the next day.

I'm not really into HP (a failing in myself, not in the novels) but it makes me happy to see people getting so excited about something that's just fun. (And I will say, what I've read of HP is more entertaining than a lot of supposedly "grown up" novels. And if it upsets the po-faces that people are ENJOYING reading instead of reading to try to plumb deep meaning out of things, so much the better. You know what? Reading can be fun. It can be an escape. It doesn't have to always be edifying. I can't stand the people who always look for the "lesson" in everything.)

Whether one cares for the Potter books or not (I happen to be one who does), you've got to have respect for a phenomenon that has kids and adults excited about reading.

Adam, like I said if you enjoy it, great. And anything that gets people reading has to be a good thing. Near as I can tell, the literary value of the writing is well worth anyone's time reading (regardless of anyone's genre preference), and I wouldn't want to stand in anyone's way to read it or other works of literature.

I simply see taking kidlets out (I did say pre-teen and younger, mind you) to midnight parties akin to the one-upmanship in life. Sort of like the never-ending rise in entertainment necessary for a kids birthday party.

A little patience is a good thing, no? I mean, kids don't need that to enjoy the book.

Or do they?

Skillz, everyone knows you are total friggin' poison...

Oh, and did ya notice the way Boomer keeps putting Yankee heroes' numbers on his back (first Babe, now Whitey)?

And you clowns thought Mendoza was a double agent....

some of you act like you dont know there are movies made of these books why read when you can have fx dudes get the dvds and chill in front of the set!!!!!

Jimmy? Your bong is calling you. Hurry, go catch it!

Personally, I got nothing against HP books or the movies. I've never read any of the books (and don't plan to), but I thought the movies are cute. However, I simply refuse to get caught up in all the hoopla over another book being released. My wife is part of that sad little group I'm afraid. I'm afraid that after High School, the Real World (aka REALITY) grabbed me, slapped me around and made me its bitch. So, no dressing up in costumes for any StarfuckingWarsHarryfuckingPotterStarfuckingTrekLordofthefuckingRings movies/bok signings/conventions/whatever. If you want to, be my guest. I'll make fun of you silently from a distance. I'll just watch the movies and enjoy them quietly. 'kay?

Yea, because ALL people who go to conventions or book signings don't live in the REAL WORLD. No, we don't have jobs and families and homes and such. We just sit in a dank basement, only coming out for the next book.


I started reading Harry Potter so I would have something to talk to my nephew about other than school and found them to be a good entertainment. Even the usually stuffy National Review sees it that way.

I love the books. It doesn't matter what you read, as long as you read. HP is a great escape from "reality" It's nice to sit and read about fantsy instead of places being bombed. You need it, I know I do.

Enjoy the books, enjoy the movies, enjoy talking about them. Fuck what people think. I read HP and the NY Times. So what. I know what's going on in the world. 34 and loves witches and warlocks and wizards fun.

It's just fun.

yay us :)

Admit it, michele, you don't really have a job, you made that up for your blog. You're a GRUE. You live UNDERGROUND, man.

Us poor, sad fantasy fans, staggering around in the "real" world drooling and getting all our candy stolen by conmen because we're too dazed and confused to deal with that hard, bitter, vibrant, vital, gutsy, macho, testosterone-filled REAL MAN'S MAN'S MAN'S MAN'S WORLD.

I think C.S. Lewis said it best: "Critics who treat adult as a term of approval, instead of as a merely descriptive term, cannot be adult themselves." Want to argue with his cred, grown-ups?

This conversation is the funniest thing I have seen in a while. I must join this Harry Potter craze. Can I start with the newest book or do I have start at the beginning and read the first six first?

JimK - begin at the beginning. The author reveals things gradually throughout the series so it's worth knowing the chronology and set-up - plus you get the full understanding of the character development as well.

The books are a quick read, just by virtue of the writing style. I don't think it will take you long to get caught up. And if you must, you could watch the first three stories on DVD (you'll get enough from those) and then read the rest.

Start from the beginning - they make more sense that way.

The pope is going to kill us all with his lightsaber for this :)

Charlie- interesting read on it. I didn't think of taking the kids out for the book as akin to birthday party one-upmanship, but can see your point. I don't have kids, and am probably therefore unfit to judge, but I think I can still see an exception being made in the case of books.

I started out as a vocal nay-sayer when it came to the HP books. The hype kind of bugged me, and then I finally read the first one out of spite. I ended up hooked, and developed a great respect for the author's ability to get kids (and adults) excited about reading. I used to commute into the city by train, and it was astonishing to see the huge amount of adults reading Harry Potter, regardless of whether or not there was a new book out.

Clearly, kids can wait until the next morning to pick up the latest book. Hell, I was in bed at 10 that Friday night. However, were I a parent, I think the happiness I'd feel to see my kids excited about a novel might move me to bring them out at midnight.

Frank: The pope won't, but I can teach you how...

(Scroll down to Sunday evening. ;-) )

Odd my interest in this stuff hasn't crippled my ability to function in the real world.

Ok, I admit it ... we were at (insert huge bookseller chain name here) at midnight Friday night to get our copies. 'We' consisted of myself, my 13 year old son and my 11 year old daughter. We didn't go for all the pre-release stuff, but we did get there an hour early so that we could get copies since I hadn't reserved ahead of time. We were assigned to Ravenclaw (the boondocks of the periodical section for the ones that haddecided to show up at the last minute). There were hundreds of people there, just enjoying the experience. We all counted down at midnight and patiently waited in line. We laughed together, talked to the people around us, discussed literature, and not just HP. I saw several of my students and earned some cool points.

Each of my kids took a copy to bed with them that night (I bought three for my library) and I would have taken the third if I hadn't just started reading Otherland by Tad Williams.

The best part about this pointless story? My 11 year old daughter just finished the book this afternoon. She thoroughly enjoyed it and would not tell me anything about it ... she just said "Mommy, you have to read it." She did say she wished it was longer. Can you imagine that? An 11 year old that wishes a 652 page book was longer and knows enough not to give spoilers.

K, back to your regularly scheduled reading.

Sharon, I agree...our kids are able to be part of a phenomenon that may never happen again.

I come from a family of voracious readers, and while my oldest son inherited that same trait, my second son only read what he had to, for school assignments. It wasn't until he was 16 or 17 that he discovered the classics - Catcher In The Rye, Franny & Zooey, On The Road, The Hobbit/Lord of the Rings, Alice in Wonderland (with loving guidance from both me and his older brother). My daughter was into video games and playing sports; she never really cared about reading until the first Harry Potter book came out.

She's 15 now, and is doing her summer reading for the Honors English class she'll be taking in the fall. Aside from the assigned book and required research/writing, she had to choose a book to read on her own and she read "Coraline" by Neil Gaiman - I say "read" when it was more like she devoured it. When we were waiting at the bookstore the other night to pick up our newest Harry Potter, we were looking at some other Gaiman books and she's chosen which ones she wants to read next.

I don't think Anna would have developed this joy of reading if it were not for J.K. Rowling's books, and I thank her for it.

I can't get through HP myself, but I understand the pull for adults. The books mix escapist fantasy with some true literacy, and, dare I mention this, they are British.

Elliot, that's it exactly, she uses real words, she writes with a real style, and if it gets kids to read, who the hell cares if they were up late to buy the book, or if they wish there were a real Harry Potter, or wish they could go there too? If it gets them to read, actually sit down and read a book, and be excited that a new segment comes out, why would ANYONE argue with that?
When I was a kid, reading was my escape from the reality of my childhood. Then when I was a teen, it was an escape from the reality of high school and all of the hurtful things there. When I got married and my husband was away, it kept me from being lonely.
When I got divorced, and was having to learn how to live alone, reading kept me from being scared all the time.
Now, reading keeps me from wanting to slit my wrists at my boring boring job. You can be anyone when you read, I wanted to be in Alaska with Buck in the call of the wild, I wanted to be a dragon rider on the planet of Pern, hell, I was Chameleon in Xanth. I could be a pirate, as trapper, an astronaut, an archeologist, a jungle boy, a princess, a cowboy, or even Harry.
If a childs imagination can carry them into another world, just for awhile, how can that be a bad thing? Do they have to concentrate on bombings, kidnapped children, cancer and death? Jeeze, let them have a better place, if only for awhile. If you can read, and read well, you can do anything......I bought the HP books for my grandsons, and ended up reading them too. It doesn't matter what they read, it's the fact that they're reading.

I finally read the HP books last summer after my son kept on at me. I started with the first, and didn't read any other books til I was done with the 5th one. I was hooked.

I just wanted to comment about the "taking your children out at midnight" thing. I took my kids to a party. It wasn't necessarily all about getting the book right away. It was taking them to something that was fun for all of us. That simple. Not instant gratification, fun. As Ricki commented earlier...it's summer. We can't keep them up this late any other time.

Geesh. At least the girl's got something to read when she finishes "the half-blood prince"


I find everyone's talking and complaining about HP almost as entertaining as the books. Come on guys, if you hate them so much just avoid reading them. Don't try to keep everyone else from reading them. That's just rude. Also, I don't thik that it is rude at all to reveal the ending to HBP online. I mean if you're reading commentary about a book that you haven't finished and you don't want it to be spoiled, I shouldn't have to worry about you. How stupid. Anyways, I think the Harry Potter books are good for kids and if the gets them reading, and me reading, who the hell cares what it says.
I think that it's great kids going to the midnight party thing. I mean they've been waiting for this book for years. Let them read it when it comes out. And if anything teaches kids patience, it is the HP books. The next one isn't coming out until 08 right? Well, continue to complain I'm off to do something productive.

randy.. mr. reality person, it's ok to take a break once in a while. Reality sucks awful bad sometimes. there are times that all you can do is throw on something crazy to wear and go out and wreak havoc.