March 15, 2012

ONE SPRING WE PLAYED CRICKET ON THE QUAD AT COLGATE...:

From J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter Novels to Real Life: The Sport of Quidditch Takes Flight (Jace Lacob, Mar 14, 2012, Daily Beast)

The sport, brought to life from J.K. Rowling's seven-volume Harry Potter novel series, has quickly become a permanent fixture on many college campuses, including UCLA, which last weekend hosted the third annual Western Cup. Nineteen teams--including the Power Grangers, Dirigible Plums, Narwhals, and The Prisoners of Kickasskaban--faced off in a grueling two-day tournament that pitted their strength, speed, endurance, and hand-eye coordination--not to mention the ability to keep a broomstick between their legs at all times.

Quidditch, as Harry Potter fans know, is played flying atop broomsticks. While I saw no one soar through the air, experiencing the nascent and theatrical sport firsthand gives you the opportunity to see just how brutal, competitive, and unique it is--a combination of rugby, basketball, and dodgeball, mixed in a witch's cauldron.

Despite misconceptions about "Muggle" (i.e., nonmagical types) or "Ground" Quidditch, it is not a sport for nerds. "It's really competitive and it's not a sissy sport," said UCLA freshman Sarah Coleman, a beater--they play defense--on the Wizards of Westwood team. "There's blood ... It is full-contact, with no pads, and it's more intense than rugby." Many Quidditch players are serious athletes who, to borrow parlance from the books, look more like Cedric Diggory than, say, Neville Longbottom.


...with a tennis ball wrapped in tape, a sawed off goalie stick, and milk cartons for the wickets.  When we had to pause to let two professors cross the field, one turned to the other and said: "At least we're importing a better class of ruffians these days."

Posted by at March 15, 2012 7:06 AM
  

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