swiftism

“Taylor Swift has always been a curiously divisive public figure. Flawed but seemingly a fundamentally nice (and, crucially, cat-loving) person, the backlash against Swift seems to have endured throughout all of her success. I would never have referred to myself as a fan (though we all celebrated turning 22 with a loud sing-along of the track of the same name, right?), but I always felt a little bemused by the ferocity of her critics. It’s long been apparent to me that Swift possesses a rare gift for damn catchy songwriting, with hits like “I Knew You Were Trouble” ubiquitous on international radio and eternally trapped inside my head. On the eve of Taylor Swift’s fifth studio album, 1989, I’ve been feeling a very new and fervent affection for the young singer-songwriter, though. And it’s not just because of the cats. (It’s at least 50% because of the cats.)….”

I wrote a new blog about all the reasons I’m loving taylorswift at the moment. I hope you enjoy!

Swift

This next post may make the few people that follow my blog to begin with turn and run, so DISCLAIMER, if you want to continue blindly loving the sporadic mess that is my blog, I suggest you stop reading now. Of course, I’m under no delusions, at the same time, that this one post will have any serious ramifications anyway, so in reality, this will affect just about nothing.

Anyway, getting down to what has been an idea for a blog post for a while (and by that I mean for months and months now, eating away at my mind like a slowly crawling flame consuming a piece of paper). It is a topic that for most of the young female population, and perhaps some of the male, is one of great sensitivity. Just from the title you may have been able to guess, but let me spell it out plain and simple for you right here:

I DO NOT LIKE TAYLOR SWIFT.

*Gasp*. Yes, it is possible. No, I’m not a chauvinistic woman-hater. I have logical reasons, and I’m not saying that any of this is fact-based at all. This is strictly OPINION, and not meant for argument’s sake. This is just my impression of her. Who knows? Maybe someone will agree with me.

Let me just get one thing straight first. I think that she is a very talented musician. There is no doubt about that. I’m not here to debate her abilities. 

What I can’t stand about her is the reason why she writes her songs and the effect that it has on everyone who listens to it. I’m aware of the fact that she uses her past relationships as fuel for her lyrics to her next great hit, and that she’s so “brave” to be able to be that bold and put herself under fire like that, and blah, blah, blah. 

Yeah. It is brave to be able to do something like that, but I think that with the amount of “unique” artists out there trying to stand out and make a name for themselves by being different (Gaga anyone?), the definition of the word “brave” changes within this form of pop culture. Granted, this may be her “thing,” but at this point, to me it just comes off as arrogant. She’s a celebrity. It doesn’t matter what she does, because anything she does will be accepted. She could spread grape jelly on the bottom of her feet because that’s what her last boy toy reminded her of, and people would be lining up and down the streets saying how “brave” she is. 

Honing your talent no matter what the risk is brave. Putting your skills to the test in front of people you’re not sure will like you is brave. Trying to gain more attention when you’ve already won the eyes and ears of millions of people who love you is NOT brave. That’s called selfish.

My second long-winded point deals with the curious phenomenon that occurs when her music is ingested through the ear cavity. Let’s call it Swiftism for now. Ladies, this is directed at you.

Those of you that have boyfriends, I’m sure that you have done this at least once in your life. Let’s say that hypothetically your boy has pissed you off. You’re in a fight and he just won’t, for the life of him, understand or care to understand your side. That’s what it seems like on your end (Little known fact: most guys are feeling the exact same way on the other end). You don’t feel like talking to him anymore because that’s only making you more angry, so naturally, you turn to music to calm your nerves. I ask you, what is the first thing you go to turn on? Is it calming worship music? Is it the melodic sound of Phil Collins lighting up your iPod? Do you just sit in silence, reflect, and try and figure out a way to resolve your conflict? I’ll bet that it’s none of those, but if it is, kudos to you. 

I’m willing to bet my life that the first thing you put on is one of T-Swift’s angry post-breakup songs. Now there isn’t anything wrong with HER expression of feeling mad at one of HER relationships, but I really don’t think that every single girl in the world has gone through the exact same thing that she did. What happens next is where Swiftism occurs. Allow me to define it.

Swiftism is when a girl is mad at a significant other, listens to Taylor Swift (always a negative song), and as a consequence, becomes even more mad. I think there’s a term for that already. Brainwashing comes to mind. 

My point is that if you have a problem, don’t complicate them by swaying your emotions with messages that you know aren’t going to help. Anger is a powerful emotion, and it’s much easier to get lost in than most other ones. I say this because I know that she doesn’t just write painful, angry songs. She has plenty of happy and lovable songs as well. I’m just saying that I don’t see a parade of girls marching down the street with fresh baked cookies because they listened to a happy T-Swift song when they were already happy. The idea is that when annoyed or frustrated, it’s already easy to get more annoyed or frustrated, so why make it worse?

So, just to reiterate, I am not against Taylor Swift and her talents. It’s more about the messages that she knowingly puts out there, and influences girls to another level of anger. Admittedly, there are a lot worse messages out there, and hers is not the worst by far, but it just annoys me that people have the nerve to go out and defend her, as if what she’s doing is right.

Just take it from a guy who has seen this happen firsthand (through experience and through 3rd-party observation). I speak for all guys everywhere when I say, don’t listen to that and hate us more. Just work with us and try to peacefully resolve the problem.

After all, the alternative is for us to start listening to Jay-Z’s “99 Problems” to try and counteract the Swiftism.