Nice piece by Laurie Penny: http://www.newstatesman.com/lifestyle/2013/06/i-was-manic-pixie-dream-girl
On Waiting for My Owl
I love completing crosswords. There's such a sense of accomplishment when I pencil in that final letter without having to reference the internet, and it all actually makes sense. However, I rarely do them by myself. Whether it's the random actors or geographical references, something always trips me up. Crosswords really frustrated me until I made a friend my first year of college who happened to be awesome at crosswords...Austin Hall.
Austin has an impeccable knowledge of trivial things (which is suppose to be a compliment:)). On the easier clues, he always waited a respectable 3 or 4 seconds to see if I could answer it so that I felt like I was contributing to the cause. Then he'd clean up on the tough ones. Also, Austin ALWAYS let me do the writing. It sounds silly, but for me, writing the answers in was part of my role in our attempt to solve the puzzles. Without that, I would have felt like more of an observer than a contributor. I wouldn't have felt needed. My crossword identity would have been the equivalent of Barty Crouch's ex-house elf...
Winky was a loyal servant who was the third of her family to serve the Crouch's. She built her whole purpose around the needs of the Crouch family. Unfortunately, she found herself in a sticky situation and was dismissed by her master. She was no longer needed by her family. She was brought to Hogwarts to work in the kitchens but could not pull herself together. The rejection and loss of identity consumed her and she took to getting drunk on Butterbeer and self-pity.