Tag Archives: LGBT

Kelsea Ballerini Tells Taylor She’s Being as Fickle as the Weather as Long as She’s Not Over Kaylor

29 Sep

OK this is going to be all about Taylor because I’m trying to convey the connections I noticed. And maybe some of it is a “reach” as the more mean-girl Gaylors and the homophobes accuse anything that’s outside the well-established narrative.  I heard many things, that alone, didn’t mean much, but compiled all together made me think, hmmmmm.  So this is me looking at Kelsea’s work through a frame of trying to find proof she is into women and also that her and Taylor had a fling/are together/are WLW besties–something is there!  But please know that I like Kelsea Ballerini as an artist, on her own terms.

[ellipses indicate lines I omitted.  Highlighted text is her lyrics, plain text is my commentary]:

Weather

I’ve been thinkin’ you’ve been thinkin’ ’bout something else (Mm-hmm, mm-hmm, mm-hmm)

I suspect at least 10 songs on Taylor’s last (true vs re-recordings) album Evermore contain Karlie references.

The, I Bet You Think About Me music video dropped 11/15/21 was practically overt in it’s Karlie images and symbolism.

On the left, music video groom on the right, Jo$h Ku$hner, Karlie’s husband:

Taylor knocks the groom over on the wedding cake:

I think she’s going for some symbolism here:

And Taylor eats a cherry: 

Whatever the red scarf represents (many Swifties say it’s Taylor’s virginity)…  Taylor gave it to the bride:

At the first dance, the groom (Jo$h) pulls the bride in, and to me, it looked like a “you’re mine” gesture.  As in Jo$h made known he owns Karlie, or there is a contract, or he will keep her:

When Taylor/bride walks away from the dance, she shows us red sneakers under the wedding dress.  I’m sure you can guess who else wore sneakers under her wedding gown?  It’s Karlie.

And in the lyrics of this same vault track I think Taylor snuck in a more modern reference to some shoes that Karlie was recently marketing:

Aside from this video, as well as a preponderance of lyrics from folklore, Evermore, and some vault tracks, and the general sadness on Taylor’s face and in her voice for every event/performance she’s attended since 2020–the new album about to drop is called Midnights.

Karlie is a spokeswoman for this Midnight perfume released July of 2022:

And Taylor, wearing silver (right picture), said TS10 will be called Midnights.  A month later:

And during this Midnights Era, Taylor wore gold, which is similar in aesthetic to the gold in Karlie’s Midnight perfume ad.

This was not an exhaustive list of the times Taylor has referenced Karlie in recent times.  So you can see why Kelsea would feel the person she’s talking to in the song (Taylor?) is thinking about something else–breakup with Karlie.

Yeah, we felt perfect, now I’m nervous, can you even tell? (Oh,oh)

This headline says, “. . . perfect for a date. . .”  when Taylor and Kelsea were photographed shopping together.  It just might fit with the perfect lyric if Kelsea is trying to contrast the current unsettled times in a relationship, where someone is not over their ex, and maybe a flight risk, with the good times they had.

Did I wake you up on the wrong side of the bed?

Kelsea just might be alluding to Taylor sleeping with Karlie, and the image that Taylor snuck into her video while dressed in drag.  In The Man music video Taylor, as the man, gets out of bed with a slender woman.  And when the man gets out of the bed, this sun-looking item on the wall is obscured, bringing “my loaded gun, my eclipsed sun” lyrics from Hoax (a song probably about the Kaylor break-up) to mind.  Make of that what you will.  

Is there someone’s body that you’d rather be laying with instead?

The line in this song might be intended to conjure the mental image of that video clip and its wink to Kaylor.  Also, the expression ‘wrong side of the bed’ means grumpy, bad day, etc…  Kelsea (if my theory pans out about her and Taylor being together in some manner) may be telling Taylor that she’s acting moody, and negative, and grumpy, because she is missing a different person in the bed (Karlie).  Or missing the person that used to be on that side of the bed (Karlie).  Without more info it’s hard to say for sure, but if all these references across Kelsea’s new album are about Taylor, I can see how anyone would have had enough of their fling/new relationship/GF being hung up on an ex.

I’m so tired of your weather/Stormy when we’re together/Yeah, we used to be sunny and seventy-five/We wеre dancing, baby, rain or shine

Kelsea met Taylor June of 2015.  And they danced at that first party:

…Now somehow, I need a sweater

Kelsea is possibly talking about the cardigans Taylor sent her close friends for the folklore rollout (for the song/single, Cardigan):

Aside from this lyric possibly talking about the cardigan gift, a deeper meaning could be Taylor’s album/era.  During folklore, it was clear in a lot of lyrics that Kaylor were breaking up or broken up, and Taylor didn’t want that.  It’s full of regret and longing, and Taylor seems very preoccupied with Karlie in this time frame.  If Taylor had seen, was currently seeing Kelsea, or even if Kelsea wished Taylor would see her as a love interest–Taylor’s heartbreak over Karlie would get in the way.  It would not be happy, sunny times, it would be gloomy, sad times that made Kelsea feel chilly and left out. 

How’d we go from summer to cold as ice?

The romance with this person went from steamy and hot and comfortable to distant and chilly.  If Taylor was unable to move on from an ex, or held out hope of getting back with Karlie, it would put a relationship with Kelsea on the back burner.  

In Taylor’s The Lakes, she says she can’t move on.  And Taylor wishes Karlie would come back to where they had been (in the closet together) in total privacy.  The red rose is a Kaylor reference we talked about earlier, and the ice frozen ground is all the depression and loneliness and heartache and chilliness toward one another.  In Taylor’s wishful thinking Karlie and her could be together and that difficult, calamitous love, is causing her a grief she can’t overcome.

Right Where You Left Me is another of Taylor’s songs that uses frozen imagery to show she is not moving on from the Kaylor breakup:

Because Taylor can’t move on from the Kaylor breakup, any relationship between Kelsea and Taylor cannot move forward either.  If Taylor is frozen in place to where she had been with Karlie, it would be distant and chilly inside any relationship between Kelsea and Taylor.  Kelsea is left out in the cold, feeling the aloofness of a Taylor stuck in the past, or in a fantasy in her head.

Are we really lovers if you’re changing your mind/Like the weather? (Weather)

Taylor can’t decide if she wants to pine and be heartbroken about Karlie, or if she wants to move forward with someone new.  She is not committed, and Kelsea can feel how this person she’s trying to be in a relationship with is fickle, running hot, then cold as her moods change.

Uh-huh, oh/Get in or get out

Kelsea tells Taylor to either be present in the relationship with her or be alone wishing that Kaylor would have worked out.

But honestly, right now, you’re killin’ my vibe/(Killin’ it, killin’ it, killin’ it)/(Killin’ it, killin’ it, killin’ it)/So, if you wanna stay stuck in the clouds/Keep ’em around but not in my sky (Mm-hmm)

Taylor doesn’t own clouds.  Put clouds and sky were constant themes in the Lover era.  

Me! video:

Taylor didn’t want to date the man, nor did she want this man’s hand in marriage.  She accepted a kitten.  She’s saying no to men here.

Many Gaylors think Kaylor broke up or were on and off before 2019, and the Lover era was Taylor trying to get Karlie back. Evidence for the beginning of the Lover era wooing Karlie back are the lyrics around New York and the butterfly mural commission:

I think the commissioned mural looks a lot like Karlie’s Victoria’s Secret wings!

Here is a well-worded comment from a Gaylor on Reddit that explains the many reasons the Lover album isn’t a romantic love story, it’s a plea to Karlie; begging her to get back together:

Kelsea using “stuck in the clouds” in this song is not accidental.  A lot of the Lover album, imagery, videos and roll-out focused on the sky.

When Kelsea says you can stay stuck in the clouds, I think she means the mindset of trying to get Karlie back.  Just like in the Lover era.  And Kelsea tells Taylor, it’s fine if Taylor stays stuck in the Lover-era clouds, pining for Karlie, but not in her sky.  Kelsea doesn’t need anyone who is moody and hung up on their ex.

When it hits the fan, I don’t know who you’re gonna be/I’m not asking for much, just a little reliability

Kelsea is emphasizing the point that Taylor’s heartbreak about Kaylor is making her a flake in their relationship.

I’m so tired of your weather/Stormy when we’re together/Yeah, we used to be sunny and seventy-five

The number/temperature 75 is very specific.  Kelsea is saying her and Taylor(?) used to be happy, but are now gloomy.  And I found this tweet from Kelsea:

It is exactly the same temperature in the lyric!  If we can find out who Kelsea saw in L.A. on July 1, 2022 (or the few days before) we will know who this song is about!

I tried to figure out where Taylor was late June to July 1 of this year, 2022, and had a very difficult time (since I don’t know anything about Jet tracking).  If anyone can get the jet data, or other sources showing if Taylor Swift was at her L.A. house June-July, we’d be one step closer to knowing if this song is about her.

This was as close as I could get to narrowing down where Taylor was:

June 11, 2022 (Tribeca Film Festival, NY)

July 4, 2022

…[Bridge]

Baby, talk to me/Tell me what you need/Don’t leave me hanging anymore

Taylor’s song, Cowboy Like Me has a lyric about hanging.

Skeletons in the closet means a dirty secret.  Something bad in your past you hide from others.

It’s funny Taylor mentions closets in this context.  I’d say part of the point of this song is having gay-dar and being able to identify other gays (because you’re one too, so you know the signs).  And gay people hide in the closet before they’re out.  A secret and hiding in the closet??!

Here’s an excerpt about the Gardens of Babylon:

As a sidenote: The central club in America’s Queer as Folk series, about mostly gay men and a pair of lesbians, was called Babylon.

The fact that another track on Kelsea’s same album called, Love is a Cowboy really puts it over the top!

…  Are we really lovers if you’re changing your mind/Like the weather? (Weather)

And the word, “Lovers” to end the song???  OMG.  I think I’m on to something here.

Kelsea Ballerini Promises Not to Out Someone (Taylor Swift?) Because it Would Out Her Too

25 Sep

Disclaimer:

OK this is going to be all about Taylor because I’m trying to convey the connections I noticed. And maybe some of it is a “reach” (can we retire that word?!) as the more mean-girl Gaylors and the homophobes accuse of anything that’s outside the well-established narrative.  I heard many things, that alone, didn’t mean much, but compiled all together made me think, hmmmmm.  So this is me looking at Kelsea’s work through a frame of trying to find proof she is into women and also that her and Taylor had a fling/are together/are WLW besties–something is there!  But please know that I like Kelsea Ballerini as an artist, on her own terms.  

IF YOU GO DOWN (I’M GOIN’ DOWN TOO)

I’ve known you since Brad and Angelina

Brad and Angelina got together on the set of Mr. and Mrs. Smith, in 2005.  They collected children, and then got engaged in April of 2012.  The wedding took place in August 2014.  Angelina filed for divorce August 2016.  So that puts the timeline anywhere between 2005 and 2016, with the actual marriage between 2014-2016.  Kelsie and Taylor met in 2015.

Taylor’s Tweet:

Taylor invites Kelsea to her friend, Abigail’s birthday party:

…If I got an aisle with a mess I gotta clean up

A double entendre–clean up a mess on aisle 7, and also walking down an aisle to marry, cleaning up that mistake with divorce.

Kelsie learning about herself and realizing she had been forced into a straight marriage?  She had to use a lot of introspection and therapy to realize she was in a comp-het situation, and un-learn her heteronormative training.  And when she was finished with that she realized the man had to go.

I know you’ll be showin’ up with bleach, hmm

This reminds me of Taylor’s song, No Body No Crime:

Taylor was going to clean up a mess of a different marriage that ended in that song.

This line could also be a reference to hair bleach.

The Met Gala of Getaway Car fame.

Depending on the narrative you believe, this is the night Taylor left Calvin Harris for Tom Hiddleston.  It has also been said Taylor met Joe Alwyn at the 2016 Met Gala.  If you’re a Kaylor, you know it’s the night Taylor ditched 2 beards (Calvin and Tom), arranged a long term beard (Joe), and ran away from Jo$h Ku$hner (Karlie’s long term BF/beard) with Karlie.  A lot was happening that night!  Been in each of those scenarios Taylor, with her bleachella hair, was leaving a relationship.  And Kelsea is talking about leaving her marriage.

All those names that we don’t ever speak of

Kelsie and Taylor both have had their share of feuds and exes:

Got a couple nights that have slipped my mind/Proof and photographs have been deleted

I found this headline by Googling their names:

https://country925.iheart.com/alternate/amp/2018-05-09-kelsea-ballerini-and-taylor-swift-in-towels/

I included the link so you can see I didn’t do any fancy cutting and pasting–the image that used to be on that provocatively headline was removed… Just like Kelsea said in the song…

If you ever needed an alibi/’Cause dirt on you is dirt on me/And we both know our hands ain’t clean/If it all blows up and we end up on the news

Here’s another headline with a deleted picture that I came across:

Taylor’s song, Delicate is about the nervousness of getting closer to someone when you’re first seeing each other.  There’s an added layer of precariousness in the song because this date is between two gals.  There’s an anxiety about going for this relationship, but also a lot of sexual chemistry.  It’s pretty steamy, really:

Kelsie doing a cover of that particular song is very loud to me.

If you go down, I’m going down too/It’s a good thing we’re each other’s kinda crazy/Ain’t no judgment or keepin’ score

Kelsie might be referencing Taylor’s song, hoax, where Taylor references her painful breakup with Karlie:

In, False God Taylor told us she’s New York City:

And Karlie Kloss was the West Village:

So part of me back in New York is saying Taylor had her heart in NY, but had to leave because she can’t bear to be reminded of Karlie everywhere she goes.  The keeping score bitter line in Taylor’s heartbreak song is what Kelsea brings up in this song–she won’t do that to Taylor like Karlie did.

If you rob a bank, I’m your getaway Mercedes

God knows that’s what friends are for/’Cause dirt on you is dirt on me/And we both know our hands ain’t clean/If it all blows up and we end up on the news/If you go down, I’m going down too/If you go down, I’m going down too, yeah/I keep all your secrets by the dozen

These lines have to be about closeting and outing.  If these two had a fling or shared their secrets that gives each one of them ammunition and leverage over the other.  One cannot out the other without outing themselves. 

I think rather than a threat, this is meant to calm Taylor.  She does not want to be outed and is always fearful that she will get recognized by everyone as WLW before she’s ready, so Kelsea is saying, don’t worry, I can’t out you because I would be outing myself.  And since they’re both singers they both understand what they would be losing by being outed. It’s a sort of consolation that the gayness of it all will remain secret.

You know where my skeletons sleep

Kelsie may be talking about Taylor’s song, Cowboy Like Me here:

In the song Taylor is saying she does stuff purely for money.  Bandits, tricks up my sleeve, takes one to know one all indicate she has met someone just like her–pretending to like rich people or date men so rich people approve in order to get the money/fame.

Forever is the sweetest con is a line that I think speaks to lavender marriage.

Hypothetically, if you ever kill your husband

Kelsie is using this as an exaggeration of something terrible that she would still keep a secret.  It does double-duty here being a call-back to Taylor’s No Body No Crime:

And also could be speaking about “killing” the bearding contract.  Killing the idea of being married to a man.  Killing the charade.  And if Taylor decides to ditch Joe and other beards, Kelsea says she will still never tell that Taylor is WLW or that they had/have? a thing.

Hand on the Bible, I’d be lyin’ through my teeth/’Cause dirt on you is dirt on me/And we both know our hands ain’t clean/If it all blows up and we end up on the news/If you go down, I’m going down too/Our bodies are buried and they’re in the same ditch/So even if I wanted to, I can’t snitch/30 to life would go quicker with you, yeah/So, if you go down, I’m going down too/If you go down, I’m going down too/If you go down, I’m going down too

This song to me, is an acknowledgement that Kelsea knows a secret about Taylor, and has that same secret.  I don’t know if they were just honest with each other, or had a fling, or are dating, but this song is LOUDLY about closeting and being outed.

One Taylor Reference Might be a Coincidence, But a Dozen? That’s a KELincidence

25 Sep

OK this is going to be all about Taylor because I’m trying to convey the connections I noticed. And maybe some of it is a “reach” as the more mean-girl Gaylors and the homophobes accuse anything that’s outside the well-established narrative.  I heard many things, that alone, didn’t mean much, but compiled all together made me think, hmmmmm.  So this is me looking at Kelsea’s work through a frame of trying to find proof she is into women and also that her and Taylor had a fling/are together/are WLW besties–something is there!  But please know that I like Kelsea Ballerini as an artist, on her own terms.  For more Kelsea-centric content, see my album review from 12/8/20:

And my Top 12 songs from 1/6/17:

Now on to the clues in Kelsea’s new album!

THE LITTLE THINGS

Save your money on the roses, baby/Just leave a daisy on the dashboard

The first few lines are Kelsea rejecting romantic gestures like roses and idealized prince on a white horse rescuing a’la heteronormative tropes.  Kelsea is saying she’s OK with breaking all the straight-dating-rituals and norms for this relationship.  

Also, these lines tie directly to Taylor, and pretty blatantly.  On first listen to the album, these were the lines that clued me into the fact Kelsea might like women–and specifically, Taylor. 

At one point Taylor was using so much rose imagery that fans speculated her next album might be called Roses.  

At another point, fans speculated that Kelsea’s new track, ROSES was a collaboration with Taylor:

Interesting…

Remember Taylor’s song Gold Rush? This product is called Rose Blush:

Walk past, quick brush/I don’t like slow motion double vision in rose blush

Here are other examples of roses/gardens in Taylor’s work:

  • Love Story: So I sneak out to the garden to see you
  • Blank Space: Rose garden filled with thorns
  • Cruel Summer: And I snuck in through the garden gate every night that summer just to seal my fate
  • Betty: Would you tell me to go fuck myself or lead me to the garden?
  • Betty: In the garden would you trust me if I told you it was just a summer thing?
  • Cowboy Like Me: Now you hang from my lips like the Gardens of Babylon

Here’s some more interesting rose/flower/garden incidents in Kaylor:

Taylor is twinning with Karlie’s cover from 5/21/18 when she collects are folklore Grammy on 3/15/21.

And again here Taylor is undeniably twinning with Karlie’s 9/13/21 Met dress for her I Know You Think About Me video announcement/promo on 11/14/21:

And daisies.  Let’s not forget how important daisies are in the story of Kaylor.

The Big Sur road trip was epic in the start of Taylor and Karlie’s love story.  With many lyrics referencing it, the daisy on the DASHBOARD, daisy tag on Karlie’s social media, and the same daisy in Taylor’s liner notes–it’s one of the biggest proofs for Kaylor.

In other words those 2 lines of Kelsea’s song are telling her new romance to leave Karlie behind and stop with all the roses/daisies/gardens to focus on the little things with her.

Don’t gotta ride in on a white horse

That is a literal title of one of Taylor’s first hit songs.  And that song also fits the theme of this song about rejecting heteronormative indoctrination:

Kelsea is saying she doesn’t want a Prince Charming on the white horse to rescue her. She wants a non-stereotypical love that means more to her because of little things rather than grand gestures of Disney movies and rom-coms.

When you’re younger they say it’s a kiss in the rain

Again, I’m not saying Taylor has a copyright on “rain” the word, imagery, metaphor, symbolism–it’s pretty common in writing.  But there is a preponderance of rain songs, especially kissing in rain songs in Taylor’s work, so if you were trying to reference her this might be a subtle way to do it:

Throwing rocks at a window

Taken alone, this line is just a common writing theme.  As the fourth very close association to Taylor things in one song, in a row–it seems intentional on Kelsea’s part that she wants the listener to be reminded of Swift.  The next line of Kelsea’s song could also be a reference to another early Taylor Swift song, Ours:

 And Ours just happens to have one of the same messages contained within Kelsea’s track 1:  Subject to Change.  That society may judge LGBT love, but the happiness of the individual must be prioritized so the relationship is pursued even so.  

But it’s when we’re in a crowded room, put your hand on my back

This line reminds me of the themes in at least 3 Taylor Swift songs:  Ours that we just talked about.  Taylor’s line, 

They’ll judge it like they know about me and you/And the verdict comes from those with nothing else to do

When people see a same sex couple, they’re not sure if they’re just friends, or if the two people are in a relationship, especially straight people!  Heteronormativity works hard.  When Taylor says they know about me and you, she’s saying people are speculating that she and the person she’s talking about in the song are not just friends, but gay together.  Furthermore, those gossiping people disapprove and stigmatize anything that is not straight.  So Kelsea’s line makes me think of a covert couple in a public space.  They can appear as friends to safely avoid further scrutiny or judgment.  Because when it’s a woman’s hand on another gal’s back, heteronormativity says they’re just friends!  

The second song of Taylor’s that this line makes me think about is, I Know Places:

Pretty much that whole song is an expansion of the line we talked about in Ours.  Same theme.  “Friends” out in a public space, and someone inside that secret relationship daringly depends on heteronormativity to make their gesture of love to appear as just friendly.  It’s both daring and safe for a female couple to touch out in front of the public.  People usually chalk it up to friendship.  But there are the gossips that want to call it out as WLW and disparage it.  So for the couple there is always that fear of being exposed.  And in Taylor’s case, she says she hides the relationship away from prying eyes so they can love safely. 

The third of Taylor’s songs that Kelsea’s line reminds me of is, So It Goes… 

I think Kelsea is talking about the same phenomenon Taylor speaks of with “magician” and “illusionist” in public spaces.  When this couple is out on the town, they appear straight.  Maybe they’re flirting with guys, or “dating” a guy.  They can do small coupley things that the naysayers will interpret as female friendship, but this couple is on high alert not to get caught.  But Taylor’s song is saying when they’re alone, it’s “wear you like a necklace” time.  

And waiting on me in the morning with my coffee black…

It’s wine and vinyl, my head on your shoulder…

Reminder, I know Taylor doesn’t have the only references to drinking in any song.  But also, if you were talking about Taylor Swift, it might be apt to mention alcohol.  Taylor’s discography has at least 11 lines that talk about wine, not counting all the champagne/beer/whiskey/cocktails/drunk references.  And it wouldn’t be surprising that two artists might hang out listening to vinyls, signing vinyls, or otherwise listening to music and doing merch.

Used to think it would be a backseat sex scene/Drawing hearts on the window…

A clear callback to the song, Heartfirst where she met a man at a party and went to the car with him. But the line here says, USED to think.  So Kelsea has changed her mind about what love is to her.  Which she clearly tells us on the first track.

Just pull me in and kiss me slow/Ooh, it ain’t just for show (it ain’t just for show)

And this line reminds me of Taylor’s Peace:

Peace describes half of the couple being blue and depressed.  The other person says they will be there for them, warm their heart, die for them.  But only privately.  Outsiders think the love is PR or just friends, but they don’t know the real story.  Their love is a hidden secret and it’s true and deep, but also the person asks is this secret relationship going to be enough for you?    

(Ah) let’s not go big, let’s just go home

I know, I know the concept of “home” is not owned by Taylor.  But also lyrics of Taylor’s that contain the word…

home {also in Exile and Peace and Tears Ricochet}

~[Cornelia Street from Lover = “leading us home” “I took the long way home“]

~[Cruel Summer from Lover = “…I cried like a baby coming home from the bar”]

~[Delicate from Reputation = “do the girls back home touch you like I do?”]

~[Gorgeous from Reputation = “guess I’ll just stumble on home to my cats”]

~[I Think He Knows from Lover = “I’ll make myself at home“]

~[Lover from Lover = “take me out and take me home (forever and ever)”]

~[Miss Americana and the Heartbreak Prince from Lover = “I think you should come back home“]

~[New Year’s Day from Reputation = “or if you strike out and you’re crawling home“]

~[Paper Rings from Lover = “went home and tried to stalk you on the internet”]

~[Style from 1989 = “takes me home” “just take me home“]

So here, Kelsea is offering to be the one to take Taylor home.  She’ll provide peace and stability, just the little things.

Kelsea Ballerini Just (softly) Came Out, and is possibly with Taylor Swift

25 Sep

OK this is going to be all about Taylor because I’m trying to convey the connections I noticed. And maybe some of it is a “reach” (can we retire that word?!) as the more mean-girl Gaylors and the homophobes accuse of anything that’s outside the well-established narrative.  I heard many things, that alone, didn’t mean much, but compiled all together made me think, hmmmmm.  So this is me looking at Kelsea’s work through a frame of trying to find proof she is into women and also that her and Taylor had a fling/are together/are WLW besties–something is there!  But please know that I like Kelsea Ballerini as an artist, on her own terms.  For more Kelsea-centric content, see my album review from 12/8/20:

And my Top 12 songs from 1/6/17:

Which, by the way has some lines that pop out to me

[ellipses indicate lines I omitted.  Highlighted text is her lyrics, plain text is my commentary]:

And I’m unapologetically in love… /No matter where it takes me/Even if it breaks me…

A love that breaks you because it breaks social norms?

And it don’t even phase me/When they call me crazy

Why would people call this cute blonde country singer crazy for being in love with a man?  Maybe it’s a woman and homophobes not understanding same sex love?

I’m unapologetically in love…/So I could care less if I’m being careless/Might wreck me to be reckless

Why would a straight relationship be unpalatable to people?  Why does Kelsea feel like she has to justify this relationship in the song?  What is careless or reckless about a cis, white, upper-class, woman dating a man?  Maybe it’s reckless because it’s a same sex pairing?

But I’d rather fall apart than/Love half-hearted

Love half-hearted sounds like comp-het to me.  Loving a man doesn’t fulfill her even if it’s more socially acceptable, so she is taking the chance to fall apart (risk her career/fame/money/social status) to be with a woman.  Because being with a woman is loving with her whole heart.

Yeah, maybe it’s true that you know when you know…

We are all raised in a heteronormative society.  From the time we are little, people are pairing up boys with girls.  There’s nothing to know when straight is considered the default.  But this you know when you know could be talking about finding the one, sure.  But also it could mean she realized she likes women.

…keeps my eyes starry so

I heard starry eyed references a lot in the new album.  And I have this theory that I want to publish and time-stamp:  Taylor Swift has an album coming out Oct 21 (a month after Kelsea’s album just came out referencing starry eyes a lot) and it’s called Midnight.  I predict Taylor is going to indicate love went from burning red to golden and Sun to more fake gold veneer to blue sadness to maybe starry?  

Slow motion double vision in ROSE BLUSH

From TS Daylight:

Stars in eyes.  Not one sun, but all the stars in the (night) sky?  We’ll see if this comes to fruition. 

I’m so sorry for not being sorry

On to the new stuff on this brand new album! 

Song titles written in all caps (contrasting to the all lowercase of folklore).

SUBJECT TO CHANGE- There is the surface meaning of this song.  And I’m not talking about that, I’m reading into it.  

Seasons do it

I know, Taylor doesn’t own seasons, or the concept of seasons indicating changes.  But also, she conveys things in terms of seasons a LOT:

also somebody compiled all of Taylor’s lyrics mentioning a season:  

And it happens when the night goes day

Like the evolution of dark, moody Reputation to the butterflies and sunshine Lover, Kelsea is mentioning a night to day transition. 

Going through it, I knew it/The right and the hard thing are sometimes the same…

Thank God, I got a strong gut feeling/Leading me to somewhere new

To me this sounds like Kelsea discovered she liked women, and now is “new” to dating them.

This sounds like internalized homophobia with all the talk of fear and uncertainty.  Therapy may have caused the growth and metamorphosis (like caterpillar to BUTTERFLY).  And “unravel the architecture” sounds like dismantling, un-learning.  Built by youth = indoctrination, social-learning/norms, COMP-HET, anyone?!

But if one thing’s the same/It’s that I’m subject to change, yeah…/A little unpredictable, I confess

This is foreshadowing, people. For those of us in the know, Kelsea’s softly coming out here. For the general public who is clueless, she’s telling her audience/the world that there could be, or there’s going to be something changing about her.  Don’t set your expectations on the image we know of Kelsie, because there is this new thing she is about to become–WLW?

If I’m honest

BIG PAUSE

This pause is LOADED.  She is not brave enough (yet) to tell her truth, but Kelsea is sure hinting at it.  She says, “if I’m honest” and in the pause you think: Honest about what?  Is she going to tell us some news?  Is this secret contained in the pause the change being talked about in this song?  My guess is yes, it’s a newly realized, and now actualized knowledge she’s, “not straight” as Julianne Hough said.  Maybe a gay relationship of some kind…

Growing up, it kind of hurts like hell

Growing up different, or being different but not knowing why hurts.  Being bullied for being different leaves scars.  Knowing you’re different and not acknowledging it, or actively hiding it, is hell.  She could be talking about regular growing pains, but within the context of the song she could also be talking about growing up gay.

It’s chaotic, ironic

But it’s how I learn to find myself…

I’m going to put an excerpt in that says what I think this line is about:

I don’t think about the chapters/It’s all about turning the page/And that’s alright (Yeah, that’s alright, yeah, that’s alright)

And finally, she gives herself permission to love woman publicly, and tells the world also, that it’s OK–because it is!

NB is an Unnecessary Term (Listen to why I think that before your go throwing around the term TERF, please.)

16 Jan

And first, let’s try to define that overused term so we can criticize my logic (but hopefully I’ll convince you before the end, so you don’t have to) using appropriate terms:

What is Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminism (2)?
• TERFs believe trans women aren’t women & trans men aren’t men
• TERFs often feel that trans people are undermining “women’s” rights
• Trans women are often positioned as predatory men in disguise (despite having no evidence for this)
• Trans men are often positioned as ‘confused’ lesbians
• These politics undermine trans people’s ability to live free of harm and participate in society

I’m not saying non-binary/NB/enby is unnecessary because I’m somehow “against” trans-folk. Honestly, I don’t have a bunch of experience with the trans community, and I’ve only ever known one trans person closely. I volunteered for a safe-space for LGBT children, and one of the 14 year olds that came every week was FTM. I don’t have much experience with the LGBT community at large either, but I did attend the LGBT conference in Kansas City through a LGBT Coalition scholarship. And as part of that I went to all trans workshops because it’s the subject I knew the least about. In exchange for my scholarship to the conference I had to come back and share my new knowledge with the local community. I did a power-point presentation called, “Transcend Not Transition.” And PFLAG members learned a lot and liked it, so they asked me to do the presentation in other small midwestern towns to spread the word. So that’s pretty much the extent of my experience with trans-topics. Like everyone, I’m still learning. But before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s go ahead and define what non-binary means:

Non-Binary Defined

Most people – including most transgender people – are either male or female. But some people don’t neatly fit into the categories of “man” or “woman,” or “male” or “female.” For example, some people have a gender that blends elements of being a man or a woman, or a gender that is different than either male or female. Some people don’t identify with any gender. Some people’s gender changes over time (1).

Most transgender people are not non-binary. While some transgender people are non-binary, most transgender people have a gender identity that is either male or female, and should be treated like any other man or woman (1).

Here’s where I disagree with the non-binary concept. I believe the trans-person is the gender they identify with. So, I consider MTF women and FTM men no matter their physical status, remember “Transcend, Not Transition.” Furthermore, I believe there are women and men of every stripe. Women/men can be anything, and dress and act in any way that feels comfortable to them. I think instead of making a new term for those who do not fit neatly into the stereotypical male/female boxes, we need to remove the boxes entirely. I would guess a very small percent of people identify with every stereotypical trait associated with their gender anyway.

Some more helpful terms:

What are the differences between sex, gender, and gender identity (3)?

It’s common for people to confuse sex, gender, and gender identity.  But they’re actually all different things.

  • (Assigned) Sex is a label — male or female — that you’re assigned by a doctor at birth based on the genitals you’re born with and the chromosomes you have. It goes on your birth certificate. Assigned sex is a label that you’re given at birth based on medical factors, including your hormones, chromosomes, and genitals. Most people are assigned male or female.
  • Gender is much more complex: It’s a social and legal status, and set of expectations from society, about behaviors, characteristics, and thoughts. Each culture has standards about the way that people should behave based on their gender. This is also generally male or female. But instead of being about body parts, it’s more about how you’re expected to act, because of your sex.
  • Gender identity is how you feel inside and how you express your gender through clothing, behavior, and personal appearance. It’s a feeling that begins very early in life.

It’s gross to say women must have long hair, wear dresses and heels, use a feminine voice, and be a sweet and sensitive caretaker. Anyone who doesn’t isn’t a “real” woman, is such a yuck mentality. And it’s also gross to say men must have short hair and muscles, must wear pants, and be tough and love sports. Get rid of the stereotypes, I say!

I agree with the following author’s sentiment, that we need to abolish the damaging binary stereotypes instead of the well-intentioned creating space for trans-folk by doubling down on that antiquated notion:

Too often, discussions of gender today, rather than expanding boundaries, only contract them. When people say they’re “non-binary”, it sounds to me more like they swallowed the lie of the pink and blue onesies. Because the point is everyone, really, is non-binary – no one’s a wholly pink butterfly or blue car onesie. We are all, to varying degrees, purple spaceship onesies – and, yes, that is the scientific term (4).

Gender stereotypes are too often confused with biology, and you hear this mistake being made as much on the left as you do on the right. After all, it’s not that big a leap from saying boys wear car prints to Eddie Izzard saying he likes having manicures “because I’m trans”. Suggesting a man can’t possibly like having his nails done is a disappointingly reductive take on gender from Izzard, who was once so determined to tear down stereotypes about masculinity (4).

So ‘Not Non-Binary, Abolish the Binary’ would be the title of a power-point if I was to make and present this to the community.

Sources:

(1) https://transequality.org/issues/resources/understanding-non-binary-people-how-to-be-respectful-and-supportive

(2) https://d3vdx7z624ogx.cloudfront.net/ry.org.nz/1585708948825_Unpacking-TERF-Logic-by-And-Pasley.pdf

(3) https://www.plannedparenthood.org/learn/gender-identity/sex-gender-identity

(4) https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/sep/16/drop-gender-stereotypes-we-are-all-non-binary

Lover (2019) by Taylor Swift Song Ranking

21 Feb

27.8% Awesome; 27.8% Good; 27.8% OK; 11.1% Meh; 5.6% Skip out of 18

5 Awesome

I Forgot that You Existed

Lover

The Man

Paper Rings

You Need to Calm Down

The first half of the ERA is so Me! The latter half, with the dark colors and over-sized men’s wear stuff is decidedly NOT my aesthetic. Also, the era felt interrupted and incomplete with the masters, a possible Kaylor break-up, and Covid-19. This album? Overall, my gripe is that it’s over-produced. Too much is going on and it’s as if someone is playing with all the new sounds, trying everything available. I think it would be better if the production was designed around the song. But there’s a lot of catchy hooks here, and lyrics working double-duty.

5 Good

Cruel Summer

Death by a Thousand Cuts

Me (originally a skip, but grew on me & high notes)

Afterglow

Daylight

5 OK

I Think He Knows

Miss Americana & the Heartbreak Prince

London Boy

False God

Cornelia Street (who’s story is this?)

2 Meh

The Archer

It’s Nice to Have a Friend

1 Skip

Soon You’ll Get Better (nice, but too depressing)

nomads, Indians, and saints (1990) Song Ranking

20 Jan

(45.5% awesome, 54.5% good, OK, meh, skip out of 11 

and an interview and 2 live bonus tracks)

5 AWESOME

hammer and a nail

1,2,3

watershed

hand me downs

pushing the needle too far

This was the first IG album I ever heard, and it really hit me hard. I didn’t know I was gay at the time I heard this, but it impacted me hugely anyway. When I say I didn’t know–I truly had NO inkling. And when I did come out to myself, this album was right there for me, helping me process what was happening. Helping me remember there were bigger things than myself and my sexuality. I love the lyrics, and I appreciate where this album took me.

6 GOOD

welcome me

WORLD FALLS

SOUTHLAND IN THE SPRINGTIME

keeper of my heart

YOU AND ME OF THE 10,000 WARS

girl with the weight of the world in her hands

Indigo Girls

OK/NEUTRAL

MEH

SKIP

…Ready for it? Lyrical Analysis & Bearding Plan

11 Jan

Sidenote:  I apologize for the shitty formatting.  I don’t know who WordPress cators to, but their platform is not user-friendly, not intuitive, and I HATE IT.  But I wouldn’t know how to get these million blog posts moved to a different platform quickly, so I remain…

Reputation was released 2017

I think this is Taylor’s song spelling out her bearding plan, code-phrase:  That’s My Man.

Knew he was a killer first time that I saw him

la·dy·kill·er/ˈlādēˌkilər a charming man who is very attractive to women.

Attractive to women. Doesn’t say this man likes women, or has many affairs with women. The definition specifically says this man is the recipiant of women’s attraction. And he’s charming/polite.


Wonder how many girls he had loved and left haunted

Taylor Swift explained the meaning… “‘Haunted’ is about the moment that you realize the person you’re in love with is drifting and fading fast…captured the intense, chaotic feeling of confusion I was looking for.”


But if he’s a ghost, then I can be a phantom

  1. phan·tom/ˈfan(t)əm a ghost
    • a figment of the imagination.
    • denoting a financial arrangement or transaction that has been invented for fraudulent purposes but that does not really exist.
      • “he diverted an estimated $1,500,000 into “phantom” bank accounts”

Interesting. Especially that last definition. If Joe is a ghost (he confused many girls), then it allows Taylor to have a financial arrangement for something that does not actually exist (love). Hmmm.

Holdin’ him for ransom

ransom ran-suhm ] noun

the redemption of a prisoner or kidnapped person, of captured goods, etc., for a price.

the sum or price paid or demanded.

a means of deliverance or rescue from punishment for sin, especially the payment of a redemptive fine.

Taylor takes Joe and keeps him for a price. Alternate definition is Taylor rescues Joe from sin for a redemptive fee.

Some, some boys are tryin’ too hard
He don’t try at all, though

Taylor reminds us some of her beards were not believable bc it was too much (Tom Hiddleston in that shirt). But this man doesn’t do anything to arouse suspicion. He’s more lowkey, and all the “privacy” he/they require means he’s a blank slate for the media and public.


Younger than my exes but he act like such a man, so
I see nothing better, I keep him forever
Like a vendetta-taI-I-I see how this is gon’ go

Taylor, who has been criticized for being a man-eater, but who also doesn’t want to ruin her career coming out as LGBT doesn’t see an alternative to keeping this beard around forever. If she has a long-term beard, she can keep her secret, but the media and public might lay off about her dating life.

A vendetta begins when one family correctly or incorrectly believes itself to have been attacked, insulted or wronged by another. Intense feelings of resentment result in the initial retaliation, which leads to the other family feeling equally resentful, angry and vengeful . Ultimately there is a long-running cycle of retaliatory violence. This continual cycle of provocation and retaliation makes it almost impossible to end the vendetta peacefully. Vendettas frequently involve the entire family members, all the relatives and associates, and can last for generations.

NDAS, anyone?

Touch me and you’ll never be alone
I-Island breeze and lights down low

No one has to know In the middle of the night, in my dreams
You should see the things we do, baby
In the middle of the night, in my dreams
I know I’m gonna be with you
So I take my time

The music changes in this part of the song, as does Taylor’s mood. Here, she’s softer, and sings, no one has to know (b/c this is a secret) in her [sexy, apparently, based on the noises] dreams she thinks of “you” someone different than the person in the rest of the song.

Are you ready for it? Me, I was a robber first time that he saw me
Stealing hearts and running off and never saying sorry

This is getting at what I was saying earlier about the man-eater stuff. Robber talks about her stealing something (hearts of boys) that aren’t hers to take. The love of a man is not Taylor’s b/c it’s not real and she’s not actually into these guys she “dated.” Running off and never saying sorry implies that after the “relationships” Taylor left and felt no remorse (bc it’s a business transaction). Short-term bearding contracts were hiding her LGBT truth but also making Taylor look too man-hungry.
But if I’m a thief, then he can join the heist

Cowbody Like Me. Taylor does the bearding contracts, but now she’s saying she found a like-minded beard, who also has the same goals as she does.
And we’ll move to an island-and
And he can be my jailer,

Taylor is trying to put out her own cutesy ship name. But she already “dated” a J, so instead of Joe-Taylor fans went Taylor-Joe, and the result is a very un-cute (in my opinion) Toe.

Burton to this Taylor

I looked Burton up in the most basic of searches and read that there were, indeed, rumors of homosexuality linked to him. He even talked about it himself in an interview:

In a February 1975 interview with his friend David Lewin he said he “tried” homosexuality. He also suggested that perhaps all actors were latent homosexuals, and “we cover it up with drink“.[24] In 2000, Ellis Amburn’s biography of Elizabeth Taylor suggested that Burton had an affair with Laurence Olivier and tried to seduce Eddie Fisher[page needed], although this was strongly denied by Burton’s younger brother Graham Jenkins.[25]

It’s no secret that Liz Taylor had more than a few gay fans, or that she had more than a few gay friends…and possibly husbands.

http://ryan-field.blogspot.com/2012/11/was-richard-burton-gay.html 

Given this information, what an interesting comparison for Taylor to make! She says Joe is like Burton (gay?) to this Taylor (in a lavender marriage?) but the public will see it as a great romance.

Every lover known in comparison is a failure

I forget their names now, I’m so very tame now

All the short-term beards could be easily debunked as fake by the media, general public, and fans. It was a failure b/c these boyfriends did not help Taylor’s public image. But a “private” long-term beard, would make Taylor look more stable (tame), and as a bonus, straight.

Never be the same now, nowI-I-I see how this is gon’ go
Touch me and you’ll never be alone

I-Island breeze and lights down low
No one has to know
(No one has to know) In the middle of the night, in my dreams

It’s important that the “no one has to know” is on the same line as the description of Taylor’s dirty dreams. She is saying no one has to know who she actually dreams about (a female?). These dreams are about someone else/not the subject of the song/not Joe.
You should see the things we do, baby
In the middle of the night in my dreams
I know I’m gonna be with you
So I take my time

This person in Taylor’s dreams, who no one has to know about, b/c it’s not the subject of this song, Joe, is the one she wants to be with. And she takes her time (in both this sex-dream, and also with this long-term bearding plan).
Are you ready for it?
Ooh, are you ready for it? Baby, let the games begin
Let the games begin
Let the games begin
Baby, let the games begin
Let the games begin
Let the games begin

If Toe is real and true love, why does Taylor refer to games many times at the end of this song? True love should not have games. Taylor just set out her long-term bearding plan in this song, so she can obscure LGBT rumors, not look like a man-eater with all the shorter boyfriend relationships, but eventually be happy with this 2nd song subject.

I-I-I see how this is gon’ go
Touch me and you’ll never be alone
I-Island breeze and lights down low
No one has to know In the middle of the night, in my dreams
You should see the things we do, baby
In the middle of the night, in my dreams
I know I’m gonna be with you
So I take my time In the middle of the night
Baby, let the games begin
Let the games begin
Let the games begin
Are you ready for it? Baby, let the games begin
Let the games begin
Let the games begin
Are you ready for it?

Evermore Analysis:  Amalgamation 

16 Dec

Amalgamation- is the process of combining or uniting multiple entities into one form.

Similar to folklore, I think Taylor continues obscuring who her songs are about in Evermore.  To keep her writing as an outlet for very private relationships, feelings, and emotions, but protect her privacy (and secret).  It is my assertion that Taylor has weaved several real-life people together in each song.  Like the braid on the cover? 3 stands combine to make a hairstyle-symbols!

So when you say is “Willow” about her boyfriend/beard?  Yes.  Is it about Taylor, herself?  Yes.  Is it about a romantic relationship, perhaps Karlie?  Yes.  Her work situation?  Yes, that too.  It has pieces and characters and symbolism for each of those people/scenarios.  And also media like books and movies and historic figures mixed in.  I think Taylor sews chaos in her songs which makes analysis simultaneously universally relatable and also too complex to untangle.  

When Taylor released Evermore, she said she was going deeper into the forest.  And in the first batch of images was a wedding-looking dress? To me, Taylor saying she is going further into the woods (as opposed to Lover’s coming out into daylight) means she is going to double-down on the bearding, and stay in the closet.  I have a bad feeling the few remaining Kaylors are about to be disappointed.

When I heard folklore, I thought a lot of it was ambiguous.  And I think that was intentionally conveyed, because that’s exactly how Taylor felt.  She knew her Kaylor affair was having problems (and toxic and she was getting codependent), but she ended the album conveying their love was bigger than problems so she was sticking it out. She said, “No other shade of blue would do…She’s going to the lakes, but not without her muse.”

And Karlie did tease a completely secret album 13 days prior to its release.  I see that as them being together, or else Taylor would have sued Karlie’s a$$.  But then maybe after the album dropped Kaylor imploded, so now Tay wants to clarify?  I mean pregnancy and Miami nextdoor to Jarvanka aren’t very good signs…  And instead of a pre-planned tease, this time Karlie did a desperation-pap the day of release to prove she was in NY, not FL.  It tells me she didn’t know about Evermore…


I suspect folklore was confusion, grasping at straws, and ultimately the break-up in progress.  The sister album Evermore is the Kaylor is over for sure, album, but P.S. doesn’t Taylor have a lot of gay and lesbian-adjacent stories and interests?  And I do think there will be a 3rd album in the trilogy.  The merch doesn’t lie–but Taylor has been known to, “Nothing much going on here.”  It will be a brother album (one album for each cat, for each star on the cardigan, for each scrunchy-color)  that will take place at Woodville property at The Lakes, called (my guess) Sycamore!  And I’m afraid it’ll be all about the “boyfriend”…  But I hope I’m wrong.

Taylor Swift’s Evermore as Amalgamation: Tolerate It Analysis

16 Dec

The production is minimal, which lets the listener focus on the lyrics.

Tolerate- accept or endure (someone or something unpleasant or disliked) with forbearance.

[Verse 1]

I sit and watch you reading with your head low

First subject of the song reads.  Maybe it’s her father, b/c we know Taylor is an avid reader.

I wake and watch you breathing with your eyes closed

The second subject in the song is a more intimate relationship.  Karlie?

I sit and watch you

The third subject of the song is more distant, professional maybe.  Scott Borchetta?  She goes through three lines of description to denote each character addressed in the song.

I notice everything you do or don’t do

Her father was a dreamer, though Taylor never said (as far as I know) if her lyric about “a careless man’s careful daughter” is autobiographical: “My mom thinks of things in terms of reality and my dad always thinks in terms of daydreams… ” He was the one who envisioned (and funded) success: “I never really went there in my mind that all of this was possible. It’s just that my dad always did.” 

So Taylor admired her dad’s dreamy thinking, at least as far as getting her on her trajectory as a star.  Yet, in the Miss Americana doc, her and her father don’t sit next to each other.  He doesn’t seem to treat her with sympathy or talk to her like a daughter, in my opinion and from my own father-daughter experiences.  The relationship portrayed in those couple of scenes (I know, it’s not the whole story) was more like one of client, or even product.  And lines like, “leaving like a father running like water” [“Cardigan” folklore] underline the fact that not all is well between Taylor and her dad.

You’re so much older and wiser, and I

These lines show that these three characters are people Taylor watches and learns from, people she admires.  Authority figures and maybe even inspirations.

[Chorus 1]

I wait by the door like I’m just a kid

“Kid” tells me this verse is speaking to a person around when Taylor was a child.  

Use my best colors for your portrait

These two lines also remind of of “Illicit Affairs” in folklore, suspected to be about Karlie cheating on Jo$h with Taylor.

“And you wanna scream

Don’t call me kid

Don’t call me baby

Look at this godforsaken mess that you made me

You showed me colors you know

I can’t see with anyone else”

Lay the table with the fancy shit

This table could be a family dinner.

And watch you tolerate it

If it’s all in my head, tell me now

Tell me I’ve got it wrong somehow

I know my love should be celebrated

But you tolerate it

These last four lines in the chorus really speak to the gay experience.  To me, “tolerate” invokes religious figures preaching tolerance of sinful behaviors, “Hate the sin, love the sinner.”  And this sentiment has historically been used in regard to LGBT people when churches interpret the Bible as condemming homosexuality.  It’s bled into the mainstream with people believing tolerance isn’t homophobic (spoiler alert: It is homophobic).  And Taylor sings on her personally-wrenthing TRACK 5 that the hurt of someone who you really look up to not accepting you for who you are is painful. Track 5 is not going to be a made up fairytale/horror story.  This is Taylor’s life.

[Verse 2]

This verse, unlike the other two doesn’t begin with the “kid” line, so we know this could be one of Taylor’s more recent relationships.

I greet you with a battle hero’s welcome

Here’s an actual headline I found:

Karlie Kloss Is a Fashion Week Hero | W Magazine | Women’s …

www.wmagazine.com › karlie-kloss-louis-vuitton-garage

Feb 12, 2016 —

This line also reminds me of folklore’s My Tears Ricochet, largely thought to be about $cott

“I didn’t have it in myself to go with grace

And you’re the hero flying around, saving face”

See  how the lines are doing double-duty and addressing more than one person simultaneously?

I take your indiscretions all in good fun

See my analysis of “Illicit Affairs” about how Karlie Kloss was cheating on Jo$h with Taylor as the other woman.

Talking about Karlie in a song mostly about people Taylor looks up to not accepting her sexuality, still works in the song.  Because Taylor seems to have truly loved Karlie, and really invested in their relationship.  To the point that Taylor was participating in behavior she wasn’t entirely comfortable with (being the other woman).  And overlooking behavior in Karlie that she normally wouldn’t put up with (cheating, chasing fame, being thirsty for money).  Taylor changed herself and her morals, to impress and to keep Karlie, who she looked up to as a true soulmate.

I sit and listеn, I polish plates until they gleam and glistеn

I can see how each surface of a disco ball might be referred to as a plate.  Like, a plate of glass.  Tolerate It speaks to how she had to change and hide pieces of herself to keep others happy, and keep them in her life.  She shines up each of those plates to present.  Which references Mirrorball’s sentiment:  Taylor is perpetually putting on a performance only to be met with indifference, or dismay. 

You’re so much older and wiser and I

[Chorus 1]

I wait by the door like I’m just a kid

Here’s the kid line again to denote this person was around during Taylor’s childhood.

Use my best colors for your portrait

Online there was a photographic portrait of $cott Borchetta.  

This line could also harken back to 

“The rest of the world was black and white, But we were in screaming color.” [Out of the Woods, 1989] 

widely thought to be a song about Swift’s (secret) relationship with Karlie Kloss.

Lay the table with the fancy shit

Maybe the table is some kind of professional table for merch or photo-ops.

And watch you tolerate it

If it’s all in my head, tell me now

The line “’Cause I knew everything when I was young” [Cardigan, folklore] has been decoded!  Taylor knew her sexuality when she was young.

Tell me I’ve got it wrong somehow

Remember all those lines from folklore:  “I’m only 17, I don’t know anything” [Betty] “When you are young, they assume you know nothin’” [Cardigan] “?  Now Taylor gives us more context.  It’s so reminiscent of a young LGBT kid being told that their feelings are probably a phase.  A way to invalidate their (divergent) sexual identity..

I know my love should be celebrated

But you tolerate it

[Bridge]

While you were out building other worlds, where was I?

$cott Borchetta used money (some of it from the sale the Taylor’s masters) to buy 5 properties on Music Row in TN according to: https://www.digitalmusicnews.com/2019/08/22/scott-borchetta-music-row-properties/

Where’s that man who’d throw blankets over my barbed wire?

$cott softened her rough edges, feminized her.  He didn’t want her secret out.  Taylor’s identity was treated as a shame, a dirty secret. Taylor knew her love wasn’t wrong, but yet Scott still tried to stifle this in her.  Despite the pain, she still tries her best to be what he wants, fit into a princess mold, do what she has to (stay closeted and beard/stunt) to make them both successful. This is her dream and she believes him that this is the right thing to do.

I made you my temple, my mural, my sky

Taylor Swift-commissioned “wings” mural being removed from The Gulch

  • WSMV DIGITAL TEAM
  • POSTED MAY 2, 2019

These lyrics are very representative of Lover-era Karlie.

Now I’m begging for footnotes in the story of your life

Taylor wants is her masters, her music, her life story. 

Drawing hearts in the byline

Always taking up too much space or time

You assume I’m fine, but what would you do if I

[Chorus 2]

Break free and leave us in ruins

Taylor left her first label on bitter terms.  

Took this dagger in me and removed it

Threw out our cloaks and our daggers because it’s morning now It’s brighter now, now [Daylight, Lover]

I read “Daylight” and stepping out into the sun and living authentically by coming out of the closet.  It’s interesting the lyric is referenced near the end of a song about hiding your sexuality at the bequest of someone you look(ed) up to.

Gain the weight of you, then lose it

Believe me, I could do it

$cott betrayed her by selling her masters to the man who she cried to him about = $cooter. Taylor put her everything into both career and $cott’s.. She made Big Machine. But instead of acceptance from $cott, she has to constantly defend herself from his attacks on her character and business ethics.

If it’s all in my head, tell me now

Tell me I’ve got it wrong somehow

I know my love should be celebrated

But you tolerate it

We all look up to someone and want to be like them. We change our behavior to make ourselves more likeable for the person we admire because they mean a lot.  

Taylor has hidden 3 different people, not to mention similarities to Charles and Diana and the unspoken relation this track has to Taylor’s fans.  Will her audience embrace her if she shows her true colors?  Or will the audience read this Track 5 song as somebody else’s story in order to straightwash Taylor for their own palatability?

Taylor pours her entire heart into her family, her romance, her career, and primarily her audience–showing them what they want to see (vs what is actually in front of them).  And it’s very meta, and brings us back to 3-5 possible subjects in 1 song to obscure the truth.

[Outro]

I sit and watch you