Aidy Bryant as Adele, “Saturday Night Live,” photo from NBC

When Adele keeps calling

Let her go to voicemail

Jeffrey Denny

Adele’s ‘30’ scores №1 on Billboard chart, becomes year’s biggest release — ABC News, Nov. 29, 2021

Everywhere you turn, everywhere you look, there’s Adele.

She’s inescapable. “30” billboards heralding her new life-transforming album. CBS special with Oprah. “Saturday Night Live,” both hosting and being affectionately parodied. ITV’s blockbuster “An Audience with Adele.” On the cover of Rolling Stone.

Wait, there’s more: Adele choosing between Prince William and Prince Harry on her critically acclaimed reality docudramedy, “Adele’s Got Two Hella Crushes.” Adele starring in the smash Disney+ sitcom, “She’s So Adele!” Adele pitching reverse mortgages on Fox. Adele’s eponymous and clinically bewitching fragrance, “Adele by Chanel.”

Adele’s even on Instagram!

Let’s face it: Adele is now the center of our solar system.

We’re merely her planets spinning madly in her emotionally powerful gravitational pull. And we love it!

Adele is so omnipresent she’s omni-omnipresent to the nth power times infinity. Her earworm songs have permanently infested our ears with her song-worms.

Even my dreams have become a fun-crazy-terrifying ambrosia of reality, paranoia, and obsession with Adele.

Just the other night I dreamed that every call on my iPhone was from Adele singing “Hello” in some form or fashion.

She was, of course, calling from the other side, which could be heaven, like working without people, or hell, like Marjorie Taylor Greene’s spider hole or airports in the time of Covid.

Not recognizing her number when it came up, I let Adele’s calls go to voice mail.

The messages she left fell into the usual categories of calls we ignore. But upon listening, I found how Adele repurposed “Hello” to be hauntingly compelling. Mind you, this is a dream:

Hello, it’s EZ Warranty
I was noticing after all these years your coverage is up
Let’s go over your service records
And make sure you’re protected for another couple years
‘Cause you ain’t done the scheduled maintenance plan.

Hello, from inside my pants
My tush has dialed a thousand times
To tell you I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to call you
So it’s ok that you never pick up.

Hello, it’s Samuel L. Jackson
I was wondering about some funky charges on your Capital One Venture Rewards® card
Let’s go over this sh*t
I have had it with these mother*cking snakes who are hacking our mother*cking cards
There ain’t gonna be much healin’.

Hello, it’s IRS
We were wondering if after all these years you’d like to catch up on your taxes
We need to go over everything
They say that tax cheating is stealing
You could heal this by sending us some Venmo.

Hello, it’s me
I was wondering if after all these years if you’d like to meet your kid
And go over your abandonment
They say time is supposed to wound all heels
And I hope you ain’t done much healin’.

Hello from your mother (sigh!)
I must’ve called a thousand times
To tell you I’m sorry, you never visit me, son
And when I call, you never seem to be home

These Adele-ish voicemails in my dream sound like really badly written song parodies.

Then to my chilling horror I realized, the calls were coming from inside my psyche!

Jeffrey Denny is a Washington writer.