Although we all know of Professor Dumbledore, we only know him through Harry’s eyes: wise, old, and calm. But what does the Hogwarts Headmaster do when he’s not hunting down Horcruxes or busy being a painting?
At great personal risk, I have managed to secure fragments of memories from Dumbledore’s Pensieve. They are not in any particular order, but we should still be able to piece them together. Through them, perhaps we will finally see the day-to-day life of the legend that is Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore.
McGonagall: You’re finally Headmaster, Albus, congratulations! Now, there are a few things we must take care of. The first order of business is that—
Dumbledore: I take you on the Dumbletour! Great idea! Here we have the Dumbledoor.
McGonagall: I’ve seen your office before, Headmaster. Now, I need you to—
Dumbledore: Hang your hat and coat in the Dumblestore?
McGonagall: No. Your first step—
Dumbledore: Is to clean the Dumblefloor. Minerva, you’re tracking mud everywhere.
McGonagall: Can we please talk about—
Dumbledore: The Dumbledrawer? Where I will put all of my most important things, like my magic diary and ring, neither of which I’m supposed to know about yet?
McGonagall: What? No. Albus—
Dumbledore: [tries to disapparate]
McGonagall: You know you can’t do that. I made sure the enchantments haven’t been lifted yet. Now, can we please discuss your responsibilities as Headmaster?
Dumbledore: I think you mean my…
McGonagall: [sigh] Dumblechores.
Dumbledore: You’d be surprised to know this, but when I was born, I already had a 5 o’clock shadow. My MUMbledore used to call me Stubbledore, back in the days of Dumbleyore, before my beard grew in.
Fudge: Errrm. Okay… Can we get back to the matter at hand? I have a pretty tight schedule.
Dumbledore: The beard made me clumsy, though. Every time I lost my footing, I’d hear the children whisper “Stumbledore!” behind my back. Once, I even fell down the spiral staircase! I can still hear the children chanting their stupid song.
Stumbledore had a TUMBLEdore!
He tripped and fell on his BUMbledore!
And he couldn’t get through the DumbleDOOR!
Dumbledore: [sniffles and wipes a tear from his eye] Why are children so mean?
Fudge: Yes, yes, I’m sure you had a tragic childhood, but we really need to get started with—
Dumbledore: Childhood? No, this happened yesterday! Anyway, I decided from that day on to use a rubber band to tie my beard. Now, I never trip! Unless I’m on acid. Anyway, I think it makes me look handsome. Especially when I take off my glasses. Ladies, what do you think?
Fudge: DUMBLEDORE! Can you please focus?! This is supposed to be a hearing about Harry Potter using magic in the presence of a muggle!
Dumbledore: [mutters under his breath] Everything’s always about Harry.
McGonagall: Please open your books and start practicing the proper method to Transfigure—
[A silver-painted Fawkes flies in, with a speaker taped to its back. Dumbledore’s voice sounds out from the speaker.]
Dumbledore’s Voice: Minerva, I straight up lifted 0.25kg. WITH JUST ONE HAND. They don’t call me Dumbbelldore for nothing.
McGonagall: Albus, you don’t even know how to conjur a corporeal Patronus, let alone one that can relay a message. This is bordering on animal abuse. Besides, I’m in the middle of teaching an important lesson.
Dumbledore’s Voice: Education is important but big triceps is importanter. Did you even go to the gym today, Minerva?
McGonagall: Albus, I dream of the day when you act like a real headmaster.
[Dumbledore jumps out from behind the door with a microphone in his hand]
Dumblebore: IT DOES NOT DO TO DWELL ON DREAMS AND FORGET TO LIFT.
Dumbledore: Apparently, everyone thinks I speak too quietly and slowly. I want to show all of them that I can enunciate and be loud and energetic.
[Dumbledore makes a fist and stares into an imaginary camera, like in The Office]
Dumbledore: I’ll show them all.
Drug Dealer: Mate, I don’t need your life story. How much do you want?
Dumbledore: What? Oh, yes. I’d like one cocaine, please.
Dumbledore: Remus, look at my Patronus.
Lupin: Yes, Dumbledore. I’ve seen it before. Your Patronus is a phoenix.
Dumbledore: That? No, that’s just when I play Hide-and-Seek with Fawkes. I paint him silver and he flies away to go hide somewhere. Then it’s my job to Dumblespoor him. But can you guess what my real Patronus is?
Lupin: Minerva warned me about this. You know, she’s very worried about your health, Dumbledore. We all are.
Dumbledore: Hakuna Matata, Remus. Hakuna Matata.
Dumbledore: Expecto Patronum!
Lupin: Oh, I get it. Because you’re the headmaster of HOGwarts, right?
Dumbledore: It’s the Dumbleboar, Remus. Try to keep up. Now can I join the animal club with you and Padfoot? I don’t think it’s fair that you invite Harry but don’t let me play with you guys.
Minerva is livid. She says I was supposed to “ask Potter calmly” about the whole Triwizard Tournament fiasco, not snort a huge line of cocaine off the Sword of Gryffindor beforehand.
I guess I got them mixed up.
I just wanted Harry to see that I’m no longer a Mumbledore. I’ve apologised a lot but Minerva’s taken the sword away. I’m pretty sure the Sorting Hat knows where it is, but it’s not saying anything. Git.
Harry: How do we get to the other side?
Dumbledore: The chicken! No, that doesn’t even make sense. What I meant to say, Harry, is that we ride this boat to where the Horcrux is. I’ll just Transfigure myself and you can do the rowing. We’ll be on our way in no time. They don’t call me DumbleOAR for nothing, you know!
Harry: Actually, I think the boat will just glide across the lake by itself. You know, because of magic?
Dumbledore: I JUST WANT YOU TO HOLD ME, HARRY.
Dumbledore: Minerva, look what I can do with this candle. I’ve been practicing all week.
Dumbledore: Light. No light. Light. No light. Light. No light. Light. No light. Light.
McGonagall: No light. Yes, I get it, Albus. Well done.
Dumbledore: You think Harry will be impressed? I’m so happy with it!
McGongagall: I’m sure he’s seen a candle before.
Dumbledore: I should say something clever as well, right? Something like how happy candles can be found at any time in the Dumbledark, if only you remember to do super awesome fire magic things with your hand. Does that sound good? I came up with “Dumbledark” myself!
McGonagall: You’re a DumbleDORK.
Dumbledore: Fine! I’ll work on the speech. You could just say that, you know. You don’t have to hurt my feelings, MEANerva.
[Dumbledore is wearing his Thor pyjamas and is prancing around in his office]
Dumbledore: So, did you find out?
The Sorting Hat: This is highly unethical. Headmaster, I’ve already told you—
[A bolt of lightning shoots out from Dumbledore’s wand and burns a hole in the shelf, dangerously close to where the Sorting Hat is sitting.]
The Sorting Hat: You almost hit me!
Dumbledore: Oh, put a sword in it, you crybaby. Now answer the question. Will he like me more if I had a lightning scar as well?
The Sorting Hat: All he said was that he didn’t want me to put him in Slytherin! He didn’t mention you at all. Besides, his scar is in the shape of a lightning bolt. It’s not literally a lightning scar. He wasn’t actually hit by lightning. You do know that, don’t you?
McGonagall: [walks in] Albus, we need the Sorting Hat again. Professor Flitwick wants to relay some feedback regarding the start-of-year song.
Dumbledore: My name is Dumblethor!
[McGonagall purses her lips at Dumbledore’s outfit but says nothing. She picks up the Sorting Hat and leaves. Before the door closes, Dumbledore sees the Sorting Hat say something to McGonagall. Dumbledore’s eyes narrow.]
McGonagall: Dumbledore, what is your reason to trust Severus? Tell me the secret.
Dumbledore: Oh riiiiight, the secret. The secret I specially kept for Severus? The secret I specially Dumbleswore not to tell anyone? Severus’s secret? [pause] That secret?
McGonagall: [sighs] Yes.
Dumbledore: Will you let me borrow the Creevey brothers?
Dumbledore: Well, then. It looks like you’ll still be in the Dumbledark about Severus. Wish you had some candles now, huh?
Harry: Isn’t Voldemort convinced that Snape’s on his side, even now? Professor…how can you be sure Snape’s on our side?
Dumbledore: I am Dumblesure. I trust Severus Snape completely.
McGonagall: Albus, talk to me. You’re clearly having problems.
McGonagall: This is a verbal conversation. Please stop correcting my grammar. In any case, I have not made a single mistake.
McGonagall: That doesn’t even make sense.
Dumbledore: Minerva, isn’t Harry amazing? I mean, just look at his eyes. He has his mother’s eyes, except they’re completely different and entirely the wrong colour. Do you think he notices me? Maybe I should give him 1000 points for existing.
[Dumbledore prepares to stand. McGonagall grabs him by his beard and pulls him back down in his seat.]
McGonagall: Albus, I think you’ve had enough to drink.
Dumbledore: Rubbish. Minerva, Dumblepour me another one.
McGonagall: Albus, how many bottles have you had so far?
Dumbledore: Three. Or Dumblefour.
Dumbledore: OK, maybe Dumblemore.
McGonagall: That’s enough. No more puns. No more drinks. No more favouritism for the Potter boy. Please act like a Headmaster. Do you understand?
Harry: Professor, your bird—I couldn’t do anything—he just caught fire—
Dumbledore: [hastily puts away flamethrower]
Dumbledore: Yes. He did that. By himself. And about time too. He’s been looking dreadful for days.
Harry: Professor, how can you be so cavalier about this? YOUR BIRD JUST BURNED TO DEATH.
Dumbledore: If you think I should be Glumbledore because my bird died, I couldn’t care less. I guess you could say I’m all out of Fawkes, Harry.
Dumbledore: Fawkes is a
TimeLord phoenix, Harry. They burst into flame when it is time for them to die and then they are reborn from the ashes. It’s all the fun of murder, but with none of the consequences. Look at him. Isn’t he Dumbledorable?
[Fawkes screams in agony]
Dumbledore: [smiles] Dumbledorable. Fascinating creatures, phoenixes. They can carry immensely heavy loads, their tears have healing powers, and they make highly faithful pets.
Dumbledore: I can’t believe McGonagall took away my wand and Thor pyjamas. How is playing Avengers not “behaviour befitting a Hogwarts Headmaster?” It was you, wasn’t it, you stupid little hat? You snitched on me. Just because I wanted to know what Harry thought of me.
[Dumbledore puts the Sorting Hat on the table]
The Sorting Hat: Headmaster, what are you doing?
Dumbledore: I’m going to settle the Dumblescore. Let’s play a little game. You like golf?
[Dumbledore gets his golf club from the Dumblestore]
The Sorting Hat: Headmaster, be reasonable!
Dumbledore: [swings with all his might] DUMBLEFORE!
McGonagall: [walks in] I’m sorry. I think I left my cloak and—
McGonagall: ALBUS PERCIVAL WULFRIC BRIAN DUMBLEDORE! WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU ARE DOING?
McGonagall: Albus, please stop making these terrible jokes. You cannot hide your pain behind these puns. Your headmaster now. Please act like it.
Aberforth: Thanks for giving me Sirius’s mirror, Albus. Don’t worry, I’ll keep an eye on Potter. Before you go, I had one question. Hypothetically, if I had a kid, and it could talk, like actual proper people words, what would you want it to call you?
Dumbledore: Uncledore, obviously. That’s a stupid question. Here’s a not-stupid question: Have you been jealous of me all these years because I’m the G.O.A.T?
Aberforth: Albus, why do you always—
Dumbledore: Get it? Because I’m the Greatest Of All Time.
Dumbledore: Also, you like goats.
Aberforth: Get out of my pub.
Dumbledore: Fine. Don’t be such a Grumbledore, you great big Dumblebore. And anyway, you don’t have any children. So what’s with the hypothetical ques—
Aberforth: [starts sweating] Hey! Is that Harry Potter?!
[Dumbledore quickly turns around to look]
BINOCULARS! Yes, I knew it! Obviously, it uses an Undetectable Extension Charm. What other secrets does this magical backpack hold?
If my research is correct, if I put this ring on, I’ll no longer be a single lady! This is the happiest moment of my life! I almost have too many happy emotions! Oh, and I suppose I’ll get to see my dead mum and sister again. That’s cool too, I guess.
OK, so I’ve put the ring on. Nothing’s happening. This sucks. My hand’s getting pretty hot though.
Dumbledore: Merlin’s beard, that was a bad idea! What the hell are you laughing at, Fawkes? MY HAND IS ON FIRE! That ring was definitely super cursed. Severus, did you manage to stop it? Do I need to cut my hand off? You can call me Stumpledore, if that’s the case.
Snape: That ring carried a curse of extraordinary power, to contain it is all we can hope or; I have trapped the curse in one hand or the time being—
Dumbledore: I didn’t think he’d just storm out like that! Severus doesn’t like to be grammatically corrected does he Fawkes? And I thought I was the one who got burned. I guess Severus is just…
[Dumbledore tries to take off his half-moon glasses with his shriveled hand. After a few minutes of struggling, he pulls them off with his other hand. Then he puts them back on.]
Fawkes: I mean, “Chirp chirp chirp,” or whatever it is a phoenix says.
Fawkes: [bursts into flames]
Today’s my meeting with Harry! I’m going to show him the memory of when I first met Tom Riddle. That should impress him.
[Harry and Dumbledore enter the memory]
Harry: Nice suit, sir!
HE LIKED MY SUIT! HE LIKED MY SUIT! OK, now I need a good reaction. Something clever. “Right back at you!” No, that doesn’t even make sense. He’s not wearing a suit. “My suit game is on point, boiiii!” No, he’ll probably think I’m stupid. “Suit up!” No, that’s probably trademarked.
OK, I can’t think of anything clever to say. Just give him a reaction, Dumbledore. If you wait too long, it’ll be weird. Don’t laugh, that’s too needy. Don’t wordlessly accept it, that’s arrogant. Strike a balance, Dumbledore. Be cool as a Cucumbledore. Be Humbledore. You got this.
Severus hasn’t spoken to me at all after I corrected his grammar. I wonder if he’ll still honour his agreement. Maybe I should make a stupid joke to get ease the tension. Wait a second. “Ease.” Hey, that gives me an idea!
Dumbledore: Hey, Severus. What is the opposite of a Push-Difficulty?
Dumbledore: A Pull-Ease. Get it?
[Snape gazes for a moment at Dumbledore, and there is revulsion and hatred etched in the harsh lines of his face.]
Dumbledore: Severus… pull-ease.
[Snape raises his wand and points it directly at Dumbledore]
Snape: Avada Kedavra!
Oh yeah, I forgot Severus hates jokes. I totally misread that situation. My bad. Oh well, at least I’m flying.
Wait! Wait wait wait wait! The ground’s coming up fast! Maybe if I clap my hands, Fawkes will save m—
Dumbledore: Can I have a Time-Turner?
McGonagall: No, Albus. We talked about this.
Dumbledore: But you gave Hermione one! Why can’t I have one?
McGonagall: Because Miss Granger is using it so she can attend more classes. She wants to further her magical education. You want to go back in time and capture a dinosaur so you can steal its DNA and create a…what was it?
Dumbledore: A Dumblesaurus! Or maybe a Dumblesaur! And I’ve thought it all out. It could stay in the Chamber of Secrets. We could feed Fawkes to it. Plus, Harry will want to visit me more often because he’ll be able to talk to it. I’m pretty sure dinosaurs all speak hissy-hissy or snake or whatever it is.
McGonagall: Albus, how about you write down all your jokes and made-up synonyms in a little journal? You can call that your Dumblesaurus instead, OK?
[Dumbledore frowns and stares at the floor. After a few minutes, he sighs and looks up at McGonagall.]
Dumbledore: Fine. But can I draw dinosaurs on the cover?
McGonagall: Sure, you can draw whatever you want. [pause] Have a biscuit, Albus.
I LOVE COCAINE! I can’t feel my face, though. Thank God it’s almost the weekend. Wait, is that Triwizard thing happening tonight?
SLUMBERDORE / DUMBLESNORE
[Snape is sitting at the Headmaster’s desk, staring around at his new office.]
Dumbledore: Why am I wearing clothes? I specifically asked for a nude painting of me riding a unicorn. Or you could at least have me painted in my Thor pyjamas, Severus. This chair is super uncomfortable. And where the hell is Fawkes? I wanted his head painted on the wall.
Snape: [looks up in surprise]
Dumbledore: You thought I was sleeping, didn’t you?
McGonagall: Albus, your recent behaviour is troubling. You are scaring the students.
Snape: I agree, Headmaster. You lock yourself in your office. You ignore everyone but Potter. You insult the Sorting Hat. You are suspicious of Fawkes. You shout at students.
Dumbledore: I don’t shout at students. You know what I do, Severus? Ask me what I do.
McGonagall: Severus, don’t do it. It’s a set-up for one of his terrible jokes.
Dumbledore: [whispers] Ask me what I do, Severus, or I’ll tell everyone your secret.
Snape: [frowns] What do you do, Headmas—
Dumbledore: [apparates back]
Dumbledore: Just thought of another one: RUMBLEDORE. BOOM. Dumbledore out.
Dumbledore: Hey Minerva. Bzzz. Bzzz. Bzzz.
McGonagall: [without looking up from her desk] Not now, Albus. If you’re making another joke of some sort, please go to the library and get Irma to help you write it down in your Dumblesaurus.
Dumbledore: But I want to bee here. I’m not bugging you am I? I know you’re bzzzy, but there’s no need to get waspish, Minerva. Don’t be such a buzzkill. You might think my jokes are a-pollen but I can do this all day.
McGonagall: [looks up and almost has a heart attack] MERLIN’S BEARD!
[Dumbledore has somehow transformed himself into a man-sized bee.]
Dumbledore: Beerd. Good one, Minerva! I should write that down. You know, if I could.
McGonagall: [takes quick shallow breaths, clutching her chest, her eyes wide and unfocused]
Dumbledore: It’s Bumbledore, in case you didn’t get it. Because of bumblebees. And bumble sounds like dumble. And my name is Dumbledore. Also, Polyjuice potion doesn’t work with animals? Please take me to a hospital. I am very sick.
McGonagall: GET. OUT.
[Dumbledore, having never seen McGonagall this angry before, simply runs out of the office as far as his legs can carry him, completely forgetting that he can apparate.]
Dumbledore: Hey Minerva, I have a joke. Knock Knock.
McGonagall: I’m the middle of marking these exams, but very well. Who’s there?
McGonagall: Albus, this is the part where you answer the question. Then I say “____ who?” Then you give me the punchline. That’s how the joke works.
Dumbledore: But Minerva, that’s the joke. I am the DumbleDOOR. Get it? Because my name is Dumbledore. And it rhymes with door. And doors don’t talk.
McGonagall: [sighs] Yes, I get it. Good one, Albus.
Dumbledore: I OPEN AT THE CLOSE.
Dumbledore: Yet another perfectly choreographed moment, Fawkes. And you thought all those hours of practicing was a waste of time. I wish I could see the look on Fudge and Umbridge’s faces! And Harry will be so impressed!
Fawkes: [raises talon]
Dumbledore: [makes a fist]
Fawkes: [bursts into flames]
Harry: Professor! The inferi are coming!
Dumbledore: OK. Do fire things with your wand. I’m going to get some marshmallows.
Harry: What?! I can’t hold them off by myself!
Dumbledore: Dumblesmores, Harry. Dumblesmores.
Dumbledore: Minerva, I swear it was talking. Like actual people words.
McGonagall: Albus, it’s 3 in the morning.
Dumbledore: I’m Dumblesure of it, Minerva. I don’t remember the whole encounter but I think it had something to do with ringing.
McGonagall: Albus, what happened to your hand? Please get some rest. You are not well.
Dumbledore: [gestures at Fawkes] But this talking creature troubles me. It looks nothing like a fox. Why does it seek to deceive me? Is it working with that stupid hat to take over my office?
McGonagall: Albus, stop insulting the Sorting Hat. And Fawkes is a phoenix. They don’t talk.
Dumbledore: Don’t worry Minerva. I know how to make it talk.
Dumbledore: [Picks up a bell]
Dumbledore: Ring-ding-ding-ding-dingeringeding! What does Fawkes say?
Dumbledore: But, Minerva, the ring is cursed. It needs to be destroyed. I saw a documentary that explains the whole process. I need them.
McGonagall: I understand that, Albus. But for the final time, I will not give you the Creevey brothers.
Dumbledore: Well it’s not my fault I can’t find any other Hobbits.
McGonagall: HOBBITS. DO. NOT. EXIST. Now please go back to your office and finish your Dumblechores.
Dumbledore: Fine. But can I at least have the Dumblesword back? I need it for…reasons.
McGonagall: If you promise you’ll stop harassing the other teachers about the school’s limited supply of doors, I will give it to you. Just please, no more puns.
McGonagall: Albus, I want to discuss your constant disapparating. The other teachers and I have decided to revoke that privilege. You must learn to address your problems, not run away from them.
Dumbledore: Changeum Aysuss to Essuss!
McGonagall: What on Earth are you doing?
Dumbledore: I’m changing the A in your name to an S, so it’ll be Minervs. Because you’re really starting to get on Minervs, McGonagall.
Dumbledore: [tries to disapparate]
McGonagall: Albus, I just told you that you can’t do that.
Dumbledore: [hides behind curtain]
McGonagall: I can still see you.
Dumbledore: I DON’T NEED A CLOAK TO BECOME INVISIBLE.
Dumbledore: We’ll create the best society. It’ll be tremendous. We’ll have the best Wizards. We’ll build a ‘uge wall to separate us from the Muggles and make the Muggles pay for it. We’ll make the Wizarding world great again. Right, my shadowy foreign influence and benefactor?
Grindelwald: Da. You want to be Minister of Magic? I’ll get you elected, no problem. By the way, how’s that whole teacher thing going?
Dumbledore: Terrible. Who knew education could be so complicated?
Grindelwald: Literally everyone. But anyway, I like your shoes. They’re real dragonskin?
Dumbledore: WRONG. Fake shoes!
Grindelwald: Nice. You must be happy with how they handle rainy weather, right?
Dumbledore: SAD. I have a lot of leaks to deal with. But don’t tell anyone, OK?
Grindelwald: Of course. You have my Grindleword.
HONOURABLE MENTIONS (A.K.A. A LIST OF PUNS I COULDN’T BE BOTHERED TO WRITE A WHOLE BACKSTORY FOR BECAUSE I SPENT ALL NIGHT WRITING THIS POST AND WORK STARTS IN AN HOUR AND OH GOD WHAT AM I DOING WITH MY LIFE)
- A much better name than Dumbledore’s Army: Dumblecorps
- Dumbledore cuts some wood: Lumberdore
- Dumbledore cleans his face to open his: Dumblepores
- Albus and Aberforth look like each other: Resembledores
- Dumbledore has no money: Dumblepoor
- Dumbledore is a terrible person for that whole might-have-accidentally-killed-his-sister thing: Scumbledore
- Everyone’s dresses as Dumbledore for a day: Dumblehorde
- When Dumbledore has an answer to any question: Dumblequora
- When Dumbledore ships Harry and Hermione: Tumblrdore
- When Dumbledore looks in the mirror and realises how old he is: Dumblehoar
- When Dumbledore wants to be like Prince, because he thinks that’s what Snape did: Symboldore
- When Dumbledore steals one of the Hobbit’s special cloaks and hides in the Forbidden Forest for reasons known only to him: Dumboulder
- When Dumbledore wants to be braver: Dumbolder
- Dumbledore’s shrivelled black hand can’t hold
the Elder Wandhis regular-old-wand-that-is-definitely-NOT-the-Elder-Wand that well anymore: Fumbledore
- Dumbledore (dressed in his Thor pyjamas, of course) wants to tell the Order of the Phoenix to meet up: Order of the Phoenix, Assembledore!
- When Augumenti doesn’t work so Dumbledore has to get water manually: Pumpledore
- When Dumbledore had to fight Grindelwald: Dumblewar
- When Dumbledore did his business in the Room of Requirement: Dumpledore
- Dumbledore is not this and he not that either: Dumblenor
- When Dumbledore joins a band as a drummer: Drumbledore
- Dumbledore keeps collecting random silver instruments (the ones Harry eventually destroys after Sirius died): Dumblehoard
- Dumbledore gets on the Hogwarts express: Dumbleboard
- Dumbledore is the Dragonborn: Dumblenord