It’s so late in the Harry Potter game that even I have read all the books, so I'm not even going to bother protecting you people from spoilers.
In HP 7.1 our young wizards find themselves on the most challenging journey of their sheltered-from-public-high-school-devastation-but-not-from-constant-life-and-death-struggles adolescence. They are seeking a series of horcruxes - a portion of a person's soul which has been split, by committing the act of murder, and stored inside an object to ensure immortality. They are seeking these soul pieces from the original bad-ass Lord Voldemort (a word that I am truly shocked my mobile blogging device doesn't recognize!) and, since he's super evil, his soul slivers are equally as nasty.
When one of the horcruxes is found it must be destroyed to bring V one step closer to death. But they aren't easy to destroy, so, in HP 7.1, Harry, Ron and Hermione are carrying around this locket they know is a horcrux but they aren't able to destroy. For safe keeping, they take turns wearing the locket, but it becomes clear rather fast that the locket effects the behavior of the wearer, inducing anger, distrust, and general bad vibes. The others have to be on the lookout for these effects so they can relieve the horcrux protector of his/her duties for a bit and rid them of the negative emotions that come with the job.
I found a horcrux.
Its the extremely talented Adele's sophomore album entitled 21. Now, I'm not saying that this powerfully voiced Brit killed anyone to create this horcrux. She is, after all, a mere muggle - I think - but there is without a doubt a piece of this woman's soul stored inside this album. Which is impressive unto itself because I'm not totally sure what kind of Steve Job’s computer jargonese you'd have to master to convert the mythical human soul into binary and upload it onto iTunes.
The album is melodic, passionate, powerful and soulful (pun intended). The lyrics mostly describe lost love, broken hearts, and reminiscence. Overall, it is an honest, beautiful, enchanting, impressive bummer of an album.
Like the young and fearless wizards of the Harry Potter series, I did not know the affect of the horcrux. I heard through the social media grapevine that the album was not to be missed and eventually I broke down and downloaded it.
I like to listen to an album on repeat for a while to really get a feel for individual songs and also how the artist weaves them together to create an overall message, emotion or theme - one time through just wont get you that much of a sense. But after a 3 or so hours of listening to 21 on a Saturday morning, I found my usually busy-bodied weekend self sprawled out on my tiny love seat, holding a sleeping cat, staring off into the middle distance, wondering if I was happy.
Is my job good enough for me? Should I have moved back to Chicago? Does my girlfriend love me? Near tears, I posted on Facebook that I was laying around, listening to Adele and feeling down.
Within moments there were multiple responses to my post - encouraging me to slowly step away from the Adele. I mournfully pried myself from my sedentary state, and changed my Adele iTunes playlist to a Justin Timberlake medley.
Immediately, the sun came out, the birds started chirping, and my heart was suddenly light. The good feelings about my job, my life, and my girlfriend came rushing back. The somber cloud that had enveloped me was lifted.
Once out of my melancholy, I was able to lucidly reflect on what had happened, and to realize that the horcrux’s strength was far greater than my own. In true Harry Potter fashion I would have been required to destroy the album, perhaps with the venom of a basilisk, but I just couldn’t bring myself to do it.
The album is just too damn good.