Can We Resolve To Be More Normal About Taylor Swift In 2024?

🔗 a linked post to » — originally shared here on

I don’t doubt that Taylor Swift fans sometimes feel marginalized or attacked. Especially the ones who are extremely online and see every bozo on Twitter who says Taylor Swift isn’t a real musician or erroneously claims she doesn’t write her own songs. Misogyny exists. No one (except those bozos) disputes this. And it’s undeniable that Swift communicates something extra special and relatable to her core fans that more casual listeners miss. And that is worth writing about. But at some point, the compulsion to hush or shout down anyone with a dissenting opinion starts to feel wearying and ungenerous. In 2023, it felt like a classic case of being a sore winner, to borrow a phrase used by the writer B.D. McClay in 2019 to describe thin-skinned cultural figures who want “acclaim, but not responsibility; respect without disagreement; wealth without scrutiny; power without anyone noticing it’s there.”

The first example McClay wrote about, naturally, was Taylor Swift. And that was before she got really big over the pandemic and beyond. But for all her winning, she hasn’t got any better about sportsmanship. She remains obsessed with score settling. (When you have a billion-dollar tour and still feel the need to drag Kim Kardashian for something that happened in the mid-2010s you have unlocked a new level of pettiness.) As for the Swifties, I’m sorry, but you don’t get to say 'This just isn’t for you' when your idol has achieved the ubiquity of Taylor Swift. Because Taylor Swift isn’t just for you. She’s for all of us. Everyone on the planet has Taylor Swift being shot into their ears and up their nostrils. She’s inescapable. Whether you like her or not.

So, some of us are sort of sick to death of hearing about Taylor Swift. And that’s an understandable reaction that has no bearing on your personal enjoyment of her music if you’re a fan. Some of us being sort of sick to death of Taylor Swift will not stop the content machine from servicing you. Fear and capitalism will no doubt roll on in 2024. But maybe we can all be a little more normal about it.

I admit that I'm a bit late to this one considering we're more than halfway through 2024 already.1

Maybe it's a consequence of me being intentionally not online this year, but I haven't seen a whole lot of Taylor this year, which is odd considering she released a new album.

Anyway, while I was reading this article, I thought of a recent Daily Show segment where Jon Stewart quips: "Why does everything have to be so fucking weird?"

Go watch the clip (relevant segment is from 2:32 to 3:45) to understand the context and the delivery of that line.

My wife and I have been saying that nonstop this past month, and it's the perfect question to ask ourselves in what could be perhaps the most bizarre year of our lives to date.

  1. I blame the crushing weight of my ever-growing Instapaper queue, and the fact that I've been reading actual paper books more often lately 😬 

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