Not sure if I mentioned this yet, but I like that you’re trying to figure things out by analyzing the data that you’re provided. Unfortunately, it’s like you said… You’re really lacking in data in a lot of areas… so, I think that makes it really difficult to form any kind of solid conclusion and probably skews your data quite a bit. I will say, though, that the data you’ve collected has made me reconsider some of my thoughts on a few different questions (I’ve been reading all of your sorting hat QandA posts; again, hope you don’t mind… I just find this stuff interesting).
On top of that is the fact that I’ve seen you note a few times that NO or a very small number of (insert House here) have chosen this answer out of the data (which you’ve already established is lacking) you’ve collected, so it’s probably not a (insert House here) answer. I think this is probably a mistake since you’re failing to consider something kind of important: There are probably quite a few (not all, probably not most… just a good number) either consciously trying to get themselves into the House they believe they fit in the most and/or deserve or consciously trying to avoid a House (or two Houses, in particular: Hufflepuff and Slytherin; though, I will not deny that there are probably other Houses some people want to avoid; everyone is different) they absolutely do not want to be in.
Case in point: What you wrote regarding the Potions question (with the silver potion, the gold potion, the purple potion, and the black potion). I remember you said that there are people who think Ravenclaw would be the black potion because of the whole LSD visions thing or whatever (I haven’t actually seen this line of thought myself from anyone else), but that this is incorrect because out of all the Ravenclaws you’ve collected data on, very few or none (I can’t remember which) have picked the black potion. I disagree with this conclusion for a few reasons:
I believe MOST people would actually believe the black potion (regardless of the silver color that Slytherin is associated with) IS a Slytherin answer because of its associations with darkness (and the questionable thing with the “visions” and such), and that the people (again, not a majority or anything) actively trying to get into Slytherin, of course, WOULD choose this answer.
Now, take into account all the people who are trying to actively get into Ravenclaw House (Of which, there are many. You’ve often speculated about how Ravenclaw slightly outnumbers all the other Houses, suggesting that Ravenclaw answers may just be the most popular answers, but I haven’t seen you suggest that the reason Ravenclaw outnumbers all the other Houses is because Ravenclaw IS the most popular House *there’s a lot of polls I’ve seen that support this*, and there are people consciously trying to get into that House, honesty be damned.) and/or trying to avoid Slytherin House… and it becomes pretty clear why very few, if any, Ravenclaws choose the black potion answer.
And because, of course, I believe that every answer applies to ALL Houses… and that the black potion would garner a high amount of points for Ravenclaw, in particular, because of the fact that it is the most “mysterious” potion. Anyway…
The more I read your posts and such, though, the more I’m becoming convinced that my theory that there’s some kind of point-system in place…. that each answer fits ALL the Houses in some way is true…. or at the very least, that every answers fits at least TWO Houses. I say this for two reasons: One, I’ve seen on a few of the questions that you’ve suggested that there could be secondary weighting for another House for some answers. It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me for there to be secondary weighting on random answers but not even considered for other answers and other questions. It seems very inconsistent and… well… poorly written as you suggested… I’m not going to deny that it isn’t a possibility since most of what we’re both doing really is just a lot of speculation, but I’ve always been a bit of an optimist. I think whatever system that they have in place for scoring the answers for the test has a consistency to it.
And two, I’ve seen some other people analyzing sorting hat data (I remember seeing a spreadsheet at some point with people’s answers and what House they ultimately got as a result), and I did see at least one sorting that you analyzed where you said the answers looked like they were all over the place. It seems like there are plenty of people who will answer Sorting Hat questions and not understand how they ended up as (insert House here) when their answers were mostly what they believed to be (insert House here) and/or (insert House here). On that spreadsheet I looked at (I can’t remember where I found it now; I have a notoriously bad memory), I saw some comments on it that were along the lines of WTF is going on here; how did this person end up in (insert House here)?
*lol* Long post is long… anyway, I haven’t seen this question before, either. So, I thought I’d give my thoughts on it.
Question: You’re walking down the street late at night and hear a cry that you’re fairly sure has a magical source. What do you do?
- Withdraw into the shadows, reviewing offensive and defensive spells that might be appropriate? (Ravenclaw-High, Slytherin-High, Hufflepuff-Moderate, Gryffindor-Moderate-Low)
- Draw your wand and try to discover the source (Hufflepuff-High, Gryffindor-High, Ravenclaw-Moderate, Slytherin-Moderate-Low)
- Proceed with caution, keeping a hand on your still-concealed wand (Slytherin-High, Ravenclaw-High, Hufflepuff-Moderate, Gryffindor-Moderate)
- Draw your wand and stand your ground (Gryffindor-High, Hufflepuff-High, Slytherin-Moderate, Ravenclaw-Low)
Withdrawing to the shadows, like you said, probably generates the most Ravenclaw points… and that definitely makes sense, in my head, because it seems like one of the most “logical” answers… plus the fact that a Ravenclaw can review the offensive and defensive spells that might be appropriate is probably indicative of the fact that most Ravenclaws are very intelligent. I think this answer is also fitting for high points for Slytherins since they’re the type of House that is likely to strike from the shadows (and besides just considering their house traits; snakes are also liable to conceal themselves and strike from that vantage point). There’d only be a moderate amount of points for Hufflepuffs, I think, since while I imagine they generally do try to avoid confrontation; hiding in the shadows doesn’t really seem like their style. And well… Gryffindor, of course, isn’t above attempting a whole sneak attack type thing, but they’re more the type to go impulsively charging in.
Draw your wand and try to discover the source… I think the highest amount of points would go to Hufflepuff because it seems direct (which coincides in my mind with this honesty I believe a lot of Hufflepuffs possess… hiding in the shadows or concealing something from view kind of strikes me as dishonest or unfair). Of course, Gryffindor would also get a high amount of points for this (alternatively, this might even gather the highest amount of points for them since it’s a very them answer). Ravenclaw would probably be curious about discovering the source; so I can see them having a moderate amount of points for this answer. The direct approach doesn’t strike me as very Slytherin… also, Slytherins are known to be a bit cowardly (or cautious, rather), so they probably wouldn’t actually want to seek out the source.
Proceed with caution… Highest for Slytherin because, again, Slytherins are cautious and concealing their wand sounds like a cunning option. Ditto with Ravenclaws. I’ve mentioned before that I didn’t think this choice would be very Hufflepuff, but you brought up some good points about it… and if so many Hufflepuffs are choosing it, then it’s very likely that it’s not worth a low amount of points for them. Again, this type of thing isn’t really Gryffindor’s style, but at least they’re moving forward… so, that’s something.
Draw your wand and stand your ground… I’m surprised that Slytherins are the only ones choosing this answer… that’s very interesting. Then again, I think I can kind of see how this wouldn’t result in low points for Slytherin… Because they’re just standing there with their wand drawn and not actually seeking the source and such. That would kind of argue against Gryffindors having this answer… because again, they’re not really the type to stand around, waiting for something to happen… They’re going to go charging in. So, I actually agree with your initial assessment that this could be more of a Hufflepuff answer, too… In my head, of course, I think a person would get low points for Ravenclaw for choosing this answer since it seems like kind of an illogical option for them. *lol*
Anyway, I’m not yet following your blog (mainly because I’m only really interested in the stuff you say about Pottermore and Harry Potter, in general… but I AM keeping an eye on it… so, definitely feel free to respond whenever you get a chance. Trust me, I’ll see it! :) )