Why You Should Befriend a Badger

October 2012 Ivelisse Ada (Hufflepuff)

I’m sure you’ve seen us around the halls – those crazy kids in black and yellow who always seem to be doing homework or cooking or carry around sticks to poke each other with. I’m also sure you’ve heard the rumours: that we sew our names on our clothes, and that we live with a Witch. We can come off as intimidating and we can come off as loons. So why, exactly, would you want to approach us? Because badgers make excellent friends, and I am here to prove it to you.

1) We’re cuddly
Have you ever seen the animal badger? They look like a cross between a cat, a raccoon, and a skunk. Hufflepuffs are just like that – we’re adorable, cuddly, mysterious and mischievous little things. We live in a big, cozy common room right next to the warm, delicious-smelling kitchens. That atmosphere begins to rub off on us, and next thing you know, you’ve got a friend who gives the best hugs of all time and knows how to make the comfiest forts to sleep in. You’re welcome.

2) We’ll make you snacks
A lot of us have a knack for cooking. Since we live right next to the kitchens, we often spend our free time there, baking tons of delicious goods or learning a new recipe from our fellow badgers or the house elves. Who doesn’t enjoy a friend who always comes to visit you with a basket full of delicious food and freshly-baked goods? It’s a year-long “end of year feast” when you’re friends with a Hufflepuff. We’ll even mail you some over the summer if you live close enough, and if you don’t, we’ll teach you all our favourite recipes. We love sharing.

3) You can scare us with sheets that have holes in them.
Are you a prankster? Do you have a slightly sadistic streak? Perfect. You can scare the pants off of a badger by holding up a sheet with holes in it and have a grand old time laughing as we run off in terror. Even better, we’re loyal and forgiving – we’ll still love you even after you scare us. I couldn’t tell you where exactly this fear comes from, but it seems to be ingrained in our nature. For me I think it’s my phobia of moths. If you’re interested in psychology then this could be a blast, too; you can work your badger friend past the sheets-with-holes-phobia or even conduct an experiment to find out why we’re so terrified of the things.

4) We’ll fix your sheets and clothes that have holes in them.
Not a prankster? That’s okay too. If a Hufflepuff walks into your room and sees those dreaded ratty sheets, or sees you wearing an old favourite shirt that has holes, odds are that after we get over the terror we’ll either fix the items or make you new ones. Free blankets and clothes? What could be better?

5) We don’t lose our things.
We all know them – that friend of ours who is always losing everything. They show up late to all the events you invite them to because they were looking for something. They can’t come visit you because they’re looking for something. Their rememberall is always glowing because they forgot something somewhere. They even hold you up because, “Oh, hang on, I think I forgot X back in my dorm. We have to go back. It’ll only take a second to find it.” You never lend them your things because you know that they are a black hole and will lose your stuff in record time, and they’ll even lose the memory that they had it in the first place. You know what’s great about badgers? Badgers are never those friends. We know where all of our stuff is. Some of us are so obsessed with knowing where our stuff is that we sew our names on it and keep catalogues of all the stuff we own. Sure, it’s a little weird – but hey, at least we’re always on time.

6) We’ll find your things!
If never losing our own things wasn’t enough, Hufflepuffs will also know where all YOUR things are – and if they don’t, they have an uncanny ability to find them. Have you ever found yourself wishing your mother was with you at Hogwarts because she always knows where everything is and can find something you’ve been looking for for hours in a split second? You don’t need to anymore. You have a badger as your friend. They’ll do that and they won’t even brag about it. They’ll probably bake you a congratulations-on-getting-your-thing-back cake.

7) Our house prizes the traits of the best possible friend
Loyal. Hard-working. Non-judgemental. Honest. Patient. We’re all of these things and more. Our house colours are black and yellow – like the sun and the night sky. We can be tough and mysterious one moment, and we can be bright and cheery the next. We’ll be sweet, loving friends by day and shenanigan-committing rabble-rousers with you by night. What more could you want out of a friend?

8) We know how to deal with poltergeists.
Hufflepuff has a resident poltergeist that is always getting on our nerves. One of us actually came up with a certain kind of repellent to protect our things that we don’t want pranked and/or ruined. But the moral of the story is this: we combat that pesky thing every day, every time we plan something. We know how pranksters work. We know how to set up intricate devices to protect our hard work, and we know how to get through them. We’ve developed plenty of useful skills through our encounters, and we’re not afraid to pass them on to you. We can teach you to devise the best security system ever, or we can teach you how to sneak through one.

9) Our habits will probably rub off on you.
The more time you spend with someone, the more likely you are to pick up their habits. The great thing about Hufflepuffs is that the majority of our habits are good ones. Spend time with a badger and you’ll find yourself getting your homework done without complaining, not having to keep track of your lies because you’ve told none, and fixing your own clothes. You’ll be unstoppable.

10) We know The Witch.
Some of us are friends with The Witch and know how to talk him into using his Witchly powers for good or for mischief. Some of us don’t really know The Witch and will naively introduce you to The Witch, giving you easy access for burning.

Make of this what you will.