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How To Find Out If Someone's A 'Harry Potter' Fan In 7 Questions Or Less

Find your kind.

It can be hard out there for a Potterphile. People want to brand you as a nerd just for loving "Harry Potter." They want to make fun of you and ask if that owl has come yet (in which case you can out them as a nerd too, because how else would they know about the owls?). It can be hard to be a "Potter" fan past a certain age.

Since there's no secret handshake for fans (yet), we've come up with a handful of easy questions to help you suss out whether you're talking to a fellow Hogwarts reject. Consider it a field guide to being a Squib in a Muggle's world.

Find your kind, and keep them close. Good luck.

  1. How's it going?
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    Sometimes, you can just tell. No words need to be spoken.

  2. "What have you been reading lately?"
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    Keywords include "wizard," "magic," "fantasy," "dragon" and "Harry."

  3. "Been on any good trips recently?"
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    If they're a hardcore "Potter" fan, there's a good chance they've either been to Florida or London recently, or they really, really want to go. Practice constant vigilance, and you'll notice.

  4. Flash some "Potter" bling.
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    Admittedly not a question, but, hey, do what works. Do you have a Deathly Hallows tattoo? Lightning bolt necklace? Temporary scar tattoo on your forehead? Whatever you've got, flaunt it. If they notice and call you out, they're definitely not of Muggle stock.

  5. "After all this time?" "Always."
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    Sometimes, it's best just to drop a subtle "Harry Potter" reference and see if someone's picking up what you're putting down. You could whisper Snape's last word, when appropriate, or a little "mischief managed" can be easy(ish) to work into conversation. See what happens. If they respond in kind, they're your people. If not, well, back away slowly.

  6. "Don't you think that's just so Slytherin of him?"
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    Sometimes, it pays to be not so subtle. Just...just try it out, see what happens. Prepare to be mocked accordingly if it all goes terribly wrong.

  7. "So, do you like 'Harry Potter'?"
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    Just ask, bud. Just ask.