Archive | February, 2012

Quidkid of the Week: Boom!

17 Feb

It’s midterm season here at uOttawa, which means procrastination is the utmost priority of this Twitwitch-in-Training. Here to aid and abet my procrastination is Beater Captain Cynthia “BOOM!” Loutfi. Cynthia made the great interprovincial trek from Gatineau, Quebec (on snowshoe, of course. This is why we hot) to sit down and discuss Hogwarts, honey badgers and Hufflepuff (this interview is brought to you by the letter H). Brooms up!

Let’s get the Muggle stuff out of the way first. What program and year are you in?

I am in my last year and last semester in general social science.

Yes… a semester that we as a team are definitely not collectively sabotaging to keep you here longer… What brought you to quidditch?

I followed the snitch. During first semester’s Clubs Week, Mommy Clare was running around in full Snitch apparel handing out flyers. (Ed: …and then she went to class in her Snitch outfit and nearly got taken out by a bunch of first-years.)

What position do you play?

Beater.  I don’t want to start a position war (Ed: she totally does want to start a position war), but beater is the most awesome position of them all!

So, Cynthia “BOOM” Loutfi, explain your nickname.

When I was 17, I felt in love with a guy.  He had a lot of fun provoking me or trying to make me feel bad about myself.  And I didn’t know what to do about it.  So I turned to magic and discovered a spell that would give me the courage to defend little 17 year old me.  The problem was, the spell came with a curse.  Every time that I would win an argument, I had to finish my sentence with: “BOOM!” Every time something amazing happens in my life: “BOOM!” Every time I get good grades: “BOOM!” I bludge someone: “BOOM!” I am the Quidkid of the week: “BOOM!” My boyfriend at the time couldn’t stand it anymore…I lost him.

I am still stuck with this curse.  But trust me, ain’t no one messing with me now.  No one. That is why my nickname is “BOOM!”: Because I can’t stop saying it. Cynthia BOOM Loutfi.

"BOOM!"

Wordcurses affect millions of people worldwide. Thank you for shining a light on such a critical issue in the Quidditch community. What has been the best moment of your Quidditch career?

After the tryout when I saw my name up on the list, saying I was in the competitive team.  BEST. DAY. EVER.  I started singing “So Much Better” from the musical Legally Blonde in my head.

How about the worst or scariest?

A week before the World Cup, I realized I didn’t have my passport.  It was a disaster!  I had to go to the World Cup.  Three days before we left, I still didn’t have it.  I got it the day before we were leaving.  That was the scariest week of my life!!!! The worst moment was at the Canadian Cup.  We were doing amazing until we played against Carleton.  They destroyed us!  I was so disappointed, because I think we didn’t give our best and that is why we lost… and Carleton is good. (Whatever.)

Hear that, Carleton? Praise! Cherish it, for it shall never happen again. (We kid, uOttawa loves its big brothers and sisters.) Now Cynthia, what is your jersey number? Is there any significance to it?

I never had a jersey in my life.  So I texted my sister asking what number I should have.  She simply answered: 163.  It seemed legit.

And Cynthia is nothing if not legit.

As one of our resident Francophones, was it confusing to learn Quidditch in your second language?

No, not at all!  The hard part is when my teammates start talking strategy, but use words from sports other than Quidditch.  Quidditch I understand, the others, not so much.

What is the most interesting/funniest difference between the French and English versions of the Harry Potter books (if anything)?

I think the weirdest difference from French to English is Severus Snape’s name.  For reasons I don’t understand, in French it’s Severus Rogue.  Don’t ask why, I don’t have the slightest idea!  In general, I find the rest of the translation is really very good. Although, I find that anything said in French sounds a tiny bit wimpy compared to English.  For example, when you say “Bludger” in English, on le dit «Cognard» en Français.  So when you say “Bludged!” in English, you say «Congardé» in French.  Which sounds to long and goddamned ridiculous when you yell it on the field!

Would you have attended Hogwarts or Beauxbatons?

Hogwarts!  I don’t care if I have to work super hard to understand the British accent, I am not going back to an all-girl school.  Girls are sneaky bitches! And mean!

Despite the Veela Hair, Cynthia is a Hogwarts Girl through and through.

What house are you?

I am a Hufflepuff!  I know that technically Hufflepuffs are regular badgers, but I like to pretend that we are Honey Badgers.  These animals are f@#$%?& badasses! They take shit from no one! And they survive EVERYTHING!  I feel like I am a Honey Badger!

Be afraid….

Photo evidence of Cynthia just taking what she wants.

Photo evidence of Cynthia just taking what she wants.

The Quibbler would like to state for the record that Cynthia does not, in fact, give a shit; and takes what she wants. Being a Hufflepuff, you are no doubt an excellent finder. How would the Room of Requirement present itself to you?

In Lebanon there are trees full of huge black berries.  The Room of Requirement would be a mysterious and beautiful garden filled with these trees, were I could climb in them and eat ALL the huge black berries!

And where would you spend the majority of your time if you lived at Hogwarts?

Everywhere! I would try my best to FIND the secret passages.  It’s a whole new world that I must discover!

If you could choose a Harry Potter character to be your significant other, who would it be and what would your ideal date with them consist of?

I don’t believe in significant others.  I can be happy with anyone!  What would probably happen is that I would fantasize about having a secret adventure with Sirius Black (not the one in the movie, but the one in my head).  Meanwhile, I would be planning evil schemes to date Fred, but probably end up with Neville.

My ideal date must be like a musical!  Every time something happens there has to be a song in the background!  And he must sing “Your Song” from Moulin Rouge to me.

Neville would be good for that; he’s quite the dancer, after all. Which Harry Potter character do you see yourself as?

None of them.  I feel I am weird enough to be my very own character in HP.  But, when I’m really old, I hope to be like Dumbledore.  Calm, wise, caring and at the same time a child at heart.

Especially the child at heart.

 Wild Boggart appears! What would it look like and what would be your ‘ridikkulus’ thought to get rid of it?

A bird.  I hate birds.  Any kind of bird.  They can fly and they are dumb.  You never know where they will fly!  One day, my cousin got a bird to the face!  True story. My “ridikkulus” would be that the bird would explode and change into this:

And she would be singing like this.

Some people turn boggarts into something silly… Cynthia turns them into other peoples’ worst nightmares just to watch them squirm. What would your best subject or major be at Hogwarts?

Divination.  I can bullshit my way to an A so easily! But I would be very excited to learn Charms and Defense Against the Dark Arts-Things that would require practice and discovering spells.

Like a true Hufflepuff, always with the finding. What spell do you think would be the coolest to use?

I really want a spell that would help me learn everything without even trying.  I would think: Learn it! 2 seconds later BOOM! It’s in my brain forever.

To conclude, let’s talk about your hopes and dreams for the sport. Who or what would you most like to see playing Quidditch? (in a world where anyone and anything could)

I would love to see a DC vs. Marvel game with the Flash snitching. That would be epic! In my opinion, the positions would be like this. 

DC

Chasers: Green Lantern, Batman, Zatanna, Green Arrow,

Keeper: Superman, Martian Manhunter

Beaters: Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Hawk Girl

Seeker: Elongated Man

Marvel

Chasers: Human Torch, Wolverine, Captain America, Iron Man

Keeper: Hulk, Thing

Beaters: Storm, Invisible Girl, Spider-Man

Seeker: Mr. Fantastic

Snitch: Flash

PS: I think the Marvel Characters would CRUSH the DC ones.  Just saying. 

All Canadians are given a pair of those mittens at birth.

 Finally, for those who are unfamiliar with the hobbies of our team, we’re quite the multitalented bunch. We dance (swing, haka, and pole), we attend weekly karaoke nights, we go bouldering, etc., etc. Cynthia, if you could choose our team another hobby, what would it be?

Can we please L.A.R.P.?!  I think our team needs to pass to another level of geekiness!

For those who don’t know, Cynthia wants our team to begin Live Action Role Playing and yes, yes we can. This brings us to the end of the interview, but the fun doesn’t stop here! You can tweet @uo_quidditch all week with additional questions for Beater Captain Boom (in English or en Français).

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Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Permafrost

13 Feb

The following is a tale of successful engineering and not-so-successful 4-seasons planning.

We previously stored the concrete bases for our hoops in the bushes by our pitch because it seemed like a smarter idea than continuing to drag them around in compost bins. This was a totally smart idea, for the first few months of school.

And then we remembered that we live in Canada.

Since all the concrete blocks froze into the ground, we’ve just been playing half-pitch Quidditch with the 3 we were able to free or using giant snow mounds as bases for the past two months, but Carleton came to visit on Sunday. Since they are our Big Sister Team we needed to look our fanciest/prove we could tie our shoes on our own, so we tried to free them from the snow, ice, and frozen ground using the following:

1) A crowbar (yes, we own a crowbar. Why? Because Canada, that’s why)

2) A thoroughly abused hammer

3) Tea kettles full of hot water

4) Pieces of wood

5) Our bare hands (rawr)

6) Large amounts of moxie and ingenuity

FYI, melting the ice around it is not the hard part – melting THE GROUND underneath the bases is significantly harder.

Basically what you need to know is that A) Joel Bandy is a champ, and 2) you need to warn us next time we decide something like this is a good idea.

uOttawa Quidditch: 3

Winter: 0

Quidkid of the Week #2: Coach Chris

10 Feb

It’s daddy-daughter bonding time here at the Quibbler! Our Quidkid of the Week, Coach Chris Radojewski, as the only member of the executive team in possession of a Y chromosome, is the notoriously absent father of our 30-person family. This twitwitch fully expected Dad to refuse an interview and, although I was fully prepared to fabricate a scandalous story full of tears and betrayal, I was thrilled when Daddy Dearest agreed to sit down for a chat. Will this encounter finally make Daddy proud of me? Let’s find out.

Who is this mysterious figure?

Muggle preliminaries! What program and year are you in?

Already a difficult question! I study Joint Honours in History and Political Science, and I’m in my 2nd year at uOttawa, but technically in my 3rd year of studies.

How positively Granger of you. Now, as someone involved in a variety of muggle or “real” sports, what brought you to Quidditch and influenced your decision to coach?

I was interested in the sport when I first heard about it, so I signed up and just became completely enthralled with the game. When the opportunity to coach came up, I had been helping out unofficially for a while and decided to run for the position. I thought I could bring some added bonuses to the team from other sports.

Now, on top of coaching you also play on the team. What position do you play?

I really enjoy all of them, so I like to switch it up. I chase the most, but I do experience an occasional passion to seek.

What about your jersey number? Any significance to it?

My number is 36. My usual number had already been taken, so I decided that, for Quidditch, I would have a new number to make my own.

Note to readers: a bit of investigatory journalism has revealed that Beater Alex stole Chris’s original number. Malice? I’m on the case!

So, Chris, as one of the leaders of a team of nicknamed players, you have a noticeable absence of Quidditch nickname in your life. Why is that, and may I select one for you?

Technically, I do… and you did. You started calling me ‘daddy’ and now I answer to it on the field. (Ed: We tested this. He does respond. We have trained our parents well.) But as far as an ‘official’ Quidditch nickname, I feel like the coaching role means I need to keep a little bit of a separation from the team. There needs to be a certain level of respect on the field, and I do struggle with that sometimes because we’re all so close as a team. I’m not opposed to nicknames, I have a few of them; they just stay off the field.

… So may I select one for you?

For use off the field, sure.

Chris ‘Vogue’ Radojewski, you’re known for your signature look on the quidditch pitch. Using three words not normally applied to clothing, how would you describe this outfit?

Let’s go with sleek, fast, and smart.

"Vogue" Radojewski's style of choice

Splendid. Now, Chris ‘Ace’ Radojewski, what would you say has been the finest moment of your Quidditch career thus far?

I would say that my most memorable moment was not when I scored a goal. Usually, the game plan is to score right off the bat and get the upper hand. There was one game in the World Cup (which we ended up losing), where myself and another player were going up the field. We had been working a lot in practice on getting open, communicating, and passing well, and that was exactly what happened. The play ended in a goal, and as both a player and a coach I was really proud to have contributed to what occurred.

How about the worst moment?

Any time a player gets injured. I’m usually the first one on the field in that situation because I have a responsibility to them. Now, our players have a habit of injuring themselves so that’s a recurring thing. They’re scary moments, but not necessarily the worst because everyone is generally okay.

Field Doctor Chris, apart from attending to our frequent quinjuries, you’re also the father of our team. How does it feel to be the primary breadwinner for a family of 30?

It’s a challenge.

Three of Chris' many quidkids waiting despondently for their father to come home.

Daddy, who’s your favourite child?

I don’t have favourites. I ignore them all equally and I’m proud of them when they do well in practice and games. (Ed: It’s totally me.)

Well, at least when you show up… now Absentee Radojewski, let’s talk Hogwarts: What house are you in?

I’ve never actually taken an online quiz like everyone on the team seems to be doing, but I see myself as an even split between Gryffindor and Slytherin. No, that is not a reference to the fact that I look like Harry Potter.

Online quizzes are too mainstream for Chris ‘House Hipster’ Radojewski. What would be your best subject or major at Hogwarts?

… History? Of… Magic? Kind of a boring answer, but they have a ghost professor and that’s pretty cool.

So, Christory, what would your patronus be?

A moose. It’s decently fast, a Canadian icon, and it would definitely kill you if it decided to run into you.

Picture this bearing down on your defensive line.

If you, Chris Radomooseki, were to choose a HP character to be your significant other, who would it be and what would your ideal date consist of?

Probably Ginny. We could play real Quidditch… and then have dinner.

Even in hypothetical situations, Chris “Quidditch First” Radojewski will sacrifice conventional romance for the sport. Ladies, take note. Now, if you could have a magical pet, what would it be and what would you name it?

Definitely a hippogriff, and I would name it Cadryn.

Name something of equal or greater Awkward-Value to a hug from Voldemort.

Going to a restaurant where a Caesar salad is on the menu, ordering a Caesar salad and being told they don’t have Caesar salad.

Caesar Radojewski, what is your favourite letter of the alphabet and your favourite word that starts with it?

S and simulacrum. It’s a cool word I saw in a journal article once.

Editor’s Note: Simulacrum (noun): 1. representation or image, something vaguely similar.

Chris “Simulacrum” Radojewski, you’ve made our team notorious for our formation-march entrances accompanied by snare drum. What possessed you to bring your drum along to our first tournament?

I thought it would be cool for the team, and very fitting to our style. We run the team pretty seriously, but we like to have a good time and we’re also really loud… probably louder now that we have a drum.

Severus Snare leads his team into battle. For the North!

Well, Severus Snare, which instrument would you most like to have added to our family band/pre-game processional?

Bagpipes.

What would you do with a rocket ship?

…Sell it?

MOON-SHOES RADOJEWSKI traversing the galaxy without a rocket ship! You know not all of us inherited enough money to develop an alternative mode of space travel!

Note the moon shoes.

This ends our interview with Quiddad Chris, but remember that you can tweet us all week with additional questions. Since Mr. Nevertweets thinks he’s too cool for Twitter, we’ll be relaying them back and forth to him. Seriously, #whatswiththatchris?

It can and can’t be used properly. I don’t need it right now, though I will probably have some future occupation that requires it. Until then, my life is content without it.

And until then, Chris will disappear into the fog of absenteeism from whence he came. See you next week!

Quidkid of the Week: Queen Mollywobbles

3 Feb

uOttawa Quidditch Team’s Twitwitch in Training (call me “Hashtags”) reporting for duty with our new feature, Quidkid of the Week!

For our first interview, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Her Royal Highness Clare Mollywobbles Hutchinson. Clare wears many fancy hats as co-president of the team, resident twitwitch, team mom, and the crowned Queen of Canadian Quidditch. Quid-royalty live a hectic (albeit glamorous) life, but Queen Mollywobbles took the time to meet me in her impenetrable snow fortress on the Rideau Canal to talk Quidditch, fancy hats, and (of course) deep, dark secrets. Brooms up!

#394, Her Highness Queen Clare Mollywobbles Hutchinson: Co-President and co-founder, Beater, Twitwitch, and Team Mom.

Muggle preliminaries first! What program and year are you in?

English & Political Science – 4th year. Next year it’s the nursing home for me. Or they’re just gonna put me on an ice floe and float me out to sea. (Ed: a Canadian tradition for the old and infirm who have outlived their usefulness.)

And tell us, oh Elderly One, what first drew you to the idea of creating a quidditch team?

I had wanted to create a team since first year (I had a friend who went to Middlebury who used to send me links. He was a marvelous enabler) because it seemed to be thoroughly excellent, but never had the time. I still don’t have the time, but I do it anyway – Carleton published an article in our school newspaper asking for another team to play, and anyone who knows the schools’ rivalry knows we couldn’t let them have a team and not have one ourselves. I responded to the article and then we, uh, had a Quidditch team.  

What is your jersey number? Is there any significance to it?

“Turn to page 394…”

What position do you play?

I used to play a little bit of everything (whatever was missing that day, basically. Presidential duties, woot), but I have been adopted by the Beater coven.

A rare picture of a hatless Mollywobbles

The beater coven is by far the best, it’s true. Which Hogwarts house do you belong to?

Pottermore says I’m a Gryffindor, and my affinity for red and virtually all of my friends concur, but Pottermore is a lying little bitch. Everyone knows I’m a Hufflepuff 4 lyfe. #teamcuddles

Well I don’t FIND that very surprising at all. Can you give us some insight as to what inspired the nickname ‘Mollywobbles’?

No. It’s my secret question, I can’t tell you or the Death Eaters’ll get me.

Safety first. Speaking of safety, what has been the scariest moment of your quidditch career thus far?

Every time someone gets injured. Then my inner Mama Grizzly comes out to play. NOT MY PLAYER, YOU BITCH! One of our players once went down during a game clutching his eye, and before I knew whether it was bad or not I had to sprint to the EMT tent with every Team Mom’s worst nightmare doing a plié in my lung. That was funtimes.

How about the best moment?

Every time I yell “bludged!” is the best moment. Doesn’t even matter if anyone was actually bludged or if I’m in the produce aisle at the grocery store holding a canteloupe, I still get a power rush.

Our readers are all wondering… what’s with the hat?

Benepe’s hat was giving the Queen feelings of inadequacy. Which, if you are familiar with Queens, is something that is Just Not Done. Hence, red bowler hat. One must raise the bar. Also I needed something goofy to wear and found it on my dryer. But mostly the one-uppance.

Ah, yes. Now, how did it feel to be crowned as Queen of Canadian Quidditch?

Mortifying. And undeserved – everyone knows Andrea Hill of Carleton is the true Queen.

Muggle Quidditch's very own Kate and William (I am, of course, speaking only about the hats).

While we’re on the topic of mortification, as our resident Twitwitch you’ve become notorious for constantly tweeting. Ever been caught tweeting in an improper situation?

I’m sure there are pictures of most of them (I am *ALWAYS* tweeting in pictures), but I tweeted about commentating just before the Canadian Cup final and it sent a notification to Fancy Hat Man’s phone, which was running the music, so all the music for all the pitches just stopped. Muggle technology, man. So unreliable.

There was also that time I tweeted one of our university officials saying I hoped Trelawney hadn’t contributed to the new university vision – needless to say, he didn’t get the reference and thought I was defaming a teacher.

Our Twitwitch caught in the act!

Because I enjoy the topic of mortification, tell us one of your deepest, darkest secrets (or, barring that, an interesting fact about you)

Normally my interesting fact about myself is that I play Quidditch, so I’m all out. Unless you count my chemical addiction to maple syrup.

Then let’s talk Hogwarts: What would be your best subject or major?

Transfiguration, because McGoogles is Queen of my heart.

In HP6, I think we all remember Rowling’s description of Harry’s strange new feeling as akin to having a monster roaming around in his chest. Now, Clare, you named Harry’s Chestmonster Horace. If you had a Chestmonster of your very own, what would you name it?

Jasper. Harry’s is named Horace; I figure he would need a partner in crime. If you catch my meaning. ~And I think you do~  

And if you could pick an HP character to be your significant other, who would it be and what would your ideal date consist of?

Luna Lovegood. We would totally be the Hogwarts Dork Power Couple. And I have no bloody idea what we’d do, but it’d be incredibly entertaining.

What's she hiding underneath that hat?

Which HP character would you describe as your spirit animal?

Remus Lupin. Cardigans, big band music, books, and chocolate. That kind of sums it up. Also the running around crazed in forests. I have been known to do that. Upon occasion.

If you could have a magical creature as a pet, what would it be and what would you name it?

I have long been an advocate for Hippogriff-based travel as a greener alternative to automobiles and planes. I would name it Brego, and if you don’t know why then I don’t know you.

If you were going to hide bits of your soul, what would you use as horcruxes?

Random pinecones. The sunsweet berries of the earth. All the colours of the wind. Or my keys. Find THOSE, Harry Potter.

What would you do with an invisibility cloak?

Kick sheepdogs. Or fulfill my dearest dream of becoming a spy.

Would you kick this face? Clare Hutchinson would. (The uOttawa Quibbler and uOttawa Quidditch in no way endorse the kicking of dogs.)

What spell or magical gadget would you find most useful or entertaining?

Summoning charm would be the most useful. Which is probably not “thinking big” enough, but Time Turners freak me out. You don’t f*ck with time, man. Most enjoyment out of an actual flying broom, no doy. Y’all can keep your Extendable Ears.

Finally, let’s talk about your hopes for Quidditch: if you could see anyone or anything playing the sport, who or what would it be?

I would want Rick Mercer and Michael Ignatieff (or Baby Trudeau) to Seek on Parliament Hill with McGill Snitch Alan at his sparkliest. This would please your Queen very much.

One can only guess at what secrets that binder holds...

 This concludes our interview with Her Majesty Queen Clare Mollywobbles Hutchinson of Canadian Quidditch, but the fun and personal bubble invasion don’t stop here! If you have any questions for Clare, tweet them to @uo_quidditch. As part of Clare’s duties as Quidkid of the Week, she is bound by unbreakable vow to answer them.