This past weekend, I traveled from Cincinnati, OH to Houston, TX for the sole purpose of seeing Taylor Swift. Yes, I realize that makes me sound crazy, but if you know me at all than I’m sure you aren’t all that surprised. I would gladly give up two days and hours of sleep for 90 minutes of unabashed dancing and singing at the top of my lungs, even if I have done it about seven times before. It never gets old, and it probably never will.
Since only 9,000 people could be at her “only show of 2017” (we’ll see about that), I decided to lay out for you the many interesting/weird/exciting things that happened or thoughts that crossed my mind throughout this incredible night. Basically, all the things that will make you feel like you were there, but you can’t convey in a 10-second Snapchat.
Seeing Taylor Swift At An 18 & Up Venue Is Weird
When I think of Taylor Swift concerts, I see vivid images of young girls with corkscrew curls. I see costumes including some combination of sparkly dresses and cowboy boots or crop tops and red lipstick. I see the number 13 painted with sparkly blue nail polish on the backs of hands. All of this was pretty much absent this weekend. There were groups of preppy boys in khakis and button-ups eyeing girls across the room. There were quite a few people who didn’t know the words. And I guess there were girls wearing crop tops and red lipstick, but it felt much less intentional.
Once the music comes on and Taylor steps out, it’s all the same anyway. Regardless of the crowd, I am probably going to lose myself in the music and the dancing. It’s just funny what a different atmosphere can do to your experience. Which leads me to my next thought…
Free Alcohol Is Dangerous
Look, I’m 21 years old. My bank account is low. I’m not a big drinker, but even I can appreciate the unicorn-like rarity of free alcohol. It’s a generous gesture, but also a dangerous one. Especially when you’re going to make everyone arrive at 9:00 but not have the show actually start until 11:30. People are going to take advantage of it, and they are not going to have a pocket limit. I lost count of the times I almost got puked and/or fallen on. I’m pretty sure 30% of the crowd had to leave or go sit down before the show even started. Sure, it’s a perk for me, but sucks for them.
The 13 year-olds in their homemade Junior Jewels shirts would not approve.
In Every Crowd You Will Have People Who Don’t Care to Be There And People Who Will Beg for Her Sweat Towel
I’m not sure there is much of an in-between.
Taylor Swift Concerts Are Great Even if You Can’t See Her 80% of the Time
I guess it’s common sense that if a venue is standing room only and the stage isn’t tall enough, you’re probably not going to be able to see anything. Even if you’re tall like I am, you’re going to have trouble. The second someone in front of you has tall, thick hair or is anywhere close to or above your height, you are screwed. I still feel bad for the 5” girl that was standing next to me.
Regardless, you still have a great time, because it’s Taylor Swift and just being in her presence is enough to make you sneeze glitter. Plus, there’s always holding your phone above your head and watching through your screen. Isn’t that what phones were made for?
I Am Here For Taylor Covering Songs She Wrote
I’m sure most of you reading this were around for the Speak Now and Red tour eras of Taylor covering other people’s songs. You were also probably around for the 1989 era musical guest roster. I’ve been there for all of it, and I can honestly tell you they do not even compare to Taylor covering “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever,” “This Is What You Came For,” and “Better Man.” There is something special about her singing someone else’s song, but having an even stronger emotion and connection to it, because she knows it better than anyone ever could.
And I’m so here for it! But please keep releasing your own music, Taylor. Please. I’m not ready for you to retire to a life of only songwriting just yet. Actually, I probably never will be. But still.
Nothing Is More Exciting Than Taylor Singing All Too Well
This song is really something. It’s like the hidden gem of the fandom — the one song everyone knows is perfection, but still remains kind of elusive. Sure, she sang it at the Grammys, but not everyone gets it. Only hardcore fans understand the deep, trueTaylor Swift-ness of it. Yea, Taylor Swift is an adjective now. You’re welcome.
All Too Well is one of, if not my absolute, favorite Taylor song of all time. And there is no greater excitement than seeing Taylor sit down at a piano, start playing the opening chords, and throwing you completely off guard. It’s amazing. I don’t think I’ve screamed louder in my life.
I hope she keeps surprising us with All Too Well for the rest of our lives.
Screaming Her Songs At the Top of Your Lungs Never Gets Old, Even If You’ve Done It 5+ Times
I’ve been to quite a few Taylor concerts in my day. I’ve seen all the sets, I’ve copied all the weird dance moves, and I’ve sung all the songs (even the forever missed Stay, Stay, Stay — yeah, I was actually there for that). So I can tell you with complete sincerity that for us Swifties, it never gets old. It doesn’t even get kind of old. I still get excited when I hear You Belong With Me or Love Story. I still sing them just as furiously as New Romantics and Shake It Off. And I will probably continue to do so until I’m no longer granted the privilege.
It was a long, draining weekend, all for 1.5 hours of Taylor Swift bliss. And I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Except maybe another chance to hear All Too Well live in my lifetime. Or a cat play date. Taylor, let me know!