My Trip to Austen: Quidditch, Hang gliding, and Other Rash Behaviors. Part I

2:24 PM Marcellino DAmbrosio 2 Comments

My Trip to Austen: Quidditch, Hang gliding, and Other Rash Behaviors. Part I

My adventure to Austen was SO awesome and so frikkin packed that I’m going to have to break it into three separate blog posts, which I will post this week (I swear).  Part one will focus on my time spent on the UT Quidditch fields.

            For those of you who have not heard, Quidditch, the magical broom riding sport of the Harry Potter world, has launched into muggle universities all over the US. My friend Augusta, who I was visiting this weekend, plays for the Gryffindor house at UT. Soon, her and her teammates will be traveling to the Quidditch world cup in New York. There will be something close to 40 college teams competing there from all over the world! Who knew right? Anyway, when I rolled into UT, Augusta and her roommate were already getting suited up for their Quidditch tournament against Slytherin, Ravenclaw, and Hufflepuff. I was very excited to even have the chance at witnessing such an event, but as we drove over to the field I was offered the opportunity of a lifetime: The chance to be the Snitch.

^ ME
Now let me explain for a moment how “Muggle Quidditch” as it has come to be known, is played. The players must hold a broom between their legs as the run around on the ground, attempting to throw a volleyball through three hoops at the end of the field. The snitch is actually played by a person dressed in gold, (usually a cross country runner or rugby player) who tucks a sack with a ball into the back of his shorts. The seekers attempt to pull said ball sack from the Snitches pants (no one ever jokes about this at all).  The thing that really makes this whole thing so awesome though, is that Snitches literally have no rules.
They can run wherever they want, do whatever they want, tackle, taunt, shove, and disrupt in whatever manner pleases them at any given moment. If you would like to see some premier seeker action from last year’s world cup in New York City, check this out:

For me, an ex cross country runner and rugby veteran, this was a dream come true! NO RULES? DO WHATEVER YOU WANT? TACKLE GUYS WHO CAN ONLY USE ONE ARM?
I think yes.
By the end of the night I had hid in two separate buildings, climbed over a barbed wire fence, hid on top of a roof, used innocent bystanders as human shields, disrupted a Frisbee game, a soccer game, and three separate tennis matches, tackled the crap out of the seekers, and thrown up a ham sandwich all over the field. It was pretty intense. But in the end, it really was a very joyful and outrageous experience.

This is a short clip that I think really captures the spirit of the game. Check it.

I’ve written about a few emerging games from the millennial generation, such as Humans verses Zombies and Assassins, and Quidditch really follows suit. It is a game that you can take super seriously, but will always, always be ridiculous. Childlike joy, my friends. That is what playing is all about. For those of you out there who would have never played or seen a Quidditch match, it is a thing worth adding to your bucket list. Look around online and I’m sure you’ll find a team or a tournament near you.

Here are some pictures of me snitching:


Fence Jumping!

About to throw up



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  1. hahaa dude that's awesome! it looks like you had a ton of fun (except for the throwing up part...ew)

  2. Marc is has been like a month....WHERE IS PART II??