Things to Be Thankful For: Taylor Swift, Queen of Our Hearts

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As an Australian, Thanksgiving is mostly seen from the lens of American screens, those small or rather large boxes, respectively bringing the tradition to life through a narrative. These narratives feature a few key ingredients: first, there are the secrets about to be spilled by a blabbermouth who’s wanting to up the drama (we’re looking at Gossip Girl herself here.) The second is the smell of gas leading to some lives most likely in danger all before the turkey is even stuffed, and then there’s the final and perhaps most crucial ingredient, the essence. No matter how thick the plot is, it’s a time of being thankful for what we hold dear to our hearts and again, as anyone who knows me, that’s a guitar strumming, cat-loving, glitterfied global superstar who would much rather bake cookies than hang out at a club. Yes, the Taylor Swift.

Swift’s had what some could say a tumultuous year full of a kaleidoscope of memories; just this week, she broke yet another record by surpassing Michael Jackson’s record for the highest amount of wins at the American Music Awards. Then, there are the highly publicized downfalls. This year, her life came full circle when she recorded a song with one of her favorite high school bands, The Dixie Chicks, about her mother’s cancer, and then, of course, there’s the ongoing battle to gain the rights for her discography. Nevertheless, no matter if she’s at the height of her game or toasting her real friends amid a fading reputation, she’s always held the world captive through her utter grace and resilience. It is not hard to see the reasons why she has the fanbase she does, infamously known as Swifties, but why not name a few?

Pen to Lyrics

Courtesy of CMA Country Music Association

This one’s a given, so I’ve decided to talk about it first; there’s always been a certain difference in Swift’s writing that can’t be compared to other artists in her field. It’s like reading the starting pages of a really good book and immediately identifying yourself within the prose across its pages. The characters who, while maybe living out lives unlike our own, still have traits we can see within ourselves. It’s in the metaphors, the callbacks to rain and the various states of who she’s been across the years, that we’re able to have that collective moment of ‘ah, she’s one of us.’

Charitable to a Fault

Courtesy of Taylor Swift’s Gift Giving of 2014

We’ve all heard the saying ‘randoms acts of kindness,’ but if the dictionary were to put a face to the phrase, then we’d be met with a black and white grainy photograph of Swift. She’s generously paid for a fan’s college tuition fee, started the yearly tradition of #Swiftmas, where she turns into her own version of Mrs. Claus (having grown up on a Christmas farm it just makes sense), and has spoken up for LGBTQ+ rights. Her heart knows no bounds, and it’s just there shining on her sleeve for everyone to see.

Eye for Detail

Courtesy of American Music Awards

In the Swift concert bank is the minute a violin began to play, and the stage before us fell into what could have assumed to be an opera show, slipping away from the usual aesthetics of a country turned into pop concert and into something much more intimate and special. No matter where you joined her on the journey or which concert was the first you went to, there will be a time where everything around you fades away, and you’re just in awe.

Kill em’ with Kindness

Courtesy of Recording Academy / GRAMMYs

She’s obviously had her fair share of feuds. First, there was the Kanye debacle, and then in most recent times an effort to legally win back the rights to her first six albums. However, within the bad blood and effort to shake it off, every step of the way she’s tried to play fairly with an added attitude of knowing she won’t back down from her flaming self-respect.

Devotion to Fans

Courtesy of 1989 Secret Sessions

If we think really hard on it, then we can hazily remember a time when her name wasn’t floating around households but was held for a certain few, in fact, a fair amount of few who lined up over thirteen hours as she met and greeted every single one. While the fans are now in drones making it incredibly hard to see everybody, she still does what she can through secret sessions and liking fans’ posts on Tumblr. She’s not just a musician but that really cool friend who gives you awesome advice and an adjacent playlist to help you get over the person you once thought would’ve stayed around for a lifetime.

Spice of Sarcasm

Courtesy of Saturday Night Live

There is no denying that Swift could very well be the smartest person in the room even if she makes it a point to surround herself with people who make her grow, but as a side effect, it comes with a dosage of sarcasm. Her humor is infectious. While there might be a slight punch to it, cough Blank Space, she knows how to deliver it by making everyone fall victim to her charm.

Love Lessons 101

Courtesy of 1989 World tour

While some may tune into romantic comedies to be cast away to the lasting sentiments of a fairytale love story, Swift’s always provided an insight into the types of romantic tales that are tumultuous, spellbinding, and ever so real. All love isn’t meant to last, that’s a given, but if you don’t fall casualty to the idea that you won’t be able to find the feeling again in someone else, then the magic may creep back without you really noticing. And isn’t that the theme Swift preaches?

She’s the Girl You Want in Your Corner

Courtesy of Reputation World Tour

Above all else, she’s the girl who will forever be loyal and stick to your side like some sort of superglue. Whether there are polaroids on the hardwood floors after a fourth of July gathering or casually watching Grease for the umpteenth time while belting out the lyrics, you have a friend for life.

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By Rachel
Joining the Nerds and Beyond team back in February 2019, Rachel Finucane graduated university with a Bachelor of Arts (Humanities) majoring in Screen Arts. She’s been passionate about all things television and film-related since penning her first Neighbours fanfiction aged twelve, before inevitably taking that pen to dabble in fashion, sports, and music. She can be spotted on Twitter at @rachelfinucane_.
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