When I interviewed for this job, I was asked which Hogwarts house I belonged to. Before my future editor was even able to finish the question, I briskly replied, “Hufflepuff.” Of course I didn’t need to think about it. I’ve known I was a Hufflepuff since I first read Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire back in 2002 — when the oft-slighted house finally became more than a “lot o’ duffers.” Yet people are always surprised to meet a confident, self-proclaimed ’Puff.
Cedric Diggory was a Hufflepuff — strong and silent — but more importantly, Cedric was a hero. As his performance in the Triwizard Tournament would suggest, Cedric was both brave and clever. Yet his two most defining traits were Hufflepuffian in nature: Cedric was kind and he was fair. He bled black and yellow.
Not only did Cedric refuse to wear a “POTTER STINKS” badge, but he also helped Harry figure out the Second Task — and in the end, he even insisted that he and Harry split the title of Triwizard champion. Cedric Diggory didn’t just make Hufflepuff house proud; he made it cool to be a Hufflepuff. For the first time in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter saga, Hufflepuffs became more than an joke.
In Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Draco Malfoy snarked, “Imagine being in Hufflepuff. I think I’d leave, wouldn’t you?” From that very moment, Hufflepuff house was an underdog. (Of course, it didn’t really help that the Hufflepuffs never managed to clinch a House Cup victory.) Its defining traits aren’t very conspicuous: Gryffindors are known for their valor; Ravenclaws, their intelligence; Slytherins are ambitious; and Hufflepuffs, well, they’re the nice guys. Take it from the Sorting Hat: “They are just and loyal / Those patient Hufflepuffs are true / And unafraid of toil.”
But what’s so bad about being nice?
Hufflepuff House prides itself on being “the friendliest, most decent and most tenacious house of them all.” These wizards and witches aren’t afraid to put in a little work to get the job done, and above all, they’re extremely loyal.
Back in 2012, Rowling finally admitted that everyone should want to be a Hufflepuff, citing the house’s actions in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows as proof enough. When the students have a choice about whether or not to fight in the Battle of Hogwarts, the Hufflepuffs all stay: “They didn’t want to show off, they weren’t being reckless, that’s the essence of Hufflepuff.”
Not to mention Nymphondora Tonks, a fierce member of the Order of the Phoenix, was a Hufflepuff, too. Not only did she sacrifice her life to fight alongside her husband at the Battle of Hogwarts, but she did so just after giving birth because she was so fucking metal. It’s no surprise that her son, Teddy Lupin, went on to become Head Boy of Hufflepuff during his seventh year at Hogwarts.
And later this year, famed magizoologist Newt Scamander will usher in the “Age of Hufflepuff,” as Rowling herself coined it, with the theatrical release of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. If that’s not enough to make you proud to be a badger, then consider this: Deadpool, a.k.a. the Merc with a Mouth, is a Hufflepuff — it’s 100 percent canon. Hufflepuffs will even get their very own off-Broadway play when Puffs opens this October in New York City. “Some people rise from humble beginnings to defeat the forces of darkness in the face of insurmountable odds,” the production’s premise reads. “Puffs is the story of the people who sit in class next to those people.” (Even Hufflepuffs know when to laugh at themselves.)
Sure, you could say that it’s a pretty good time to be a Hufflepuff, and I wouldn’t argue with you. But it’s always been a good time to be a Hufflepuff. If kindness, patience, and loyalty — three traits that encapsulate the values of Harry Potter — sound boring to you, then you can’t sit with us anyway.
Unless you really want to, of course. Honestly, who am I to tell you where to sit? You could even sit next to me if you’d like.