Swifties Just Can't Stop Searching for Evidence of TS7 in Everything Taylor Does

Swifties have been reaching for any semblance of a hint towards Taylor Swift’s seventh studio album for the last few weeks. Back when the 2019 Taylor Swift wall calendar was released, some eagle-eyed Swifties took note of stamps placed on the 13th day of specific months – April, May, July, August and December – the last of which is her 30th birthday. Towards the end of February, some noticed that the first weekend in the month of March had a flower across the dates, one that resembled the flower on the shirt she wore in a post from October captioned “Let the games BEGIN.” Was this representative of the kickoff of the new era? Theories and rumors snowballed, with fans convincing themselves and the rest of the internet that the first single from TS7 would be dropping that weekend.

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Let the games BEGIN.

A post shared by Taylor Swift (@taylorswift) on

 

But we played ourselves, and nothing happened the first weekend of March. At least, not musically. Taylor's Elle and Elle UK covers were announced, but we still scrambled to recover. Taylor penned a beautiful essay about the power of music and storytelling, calling out a number of qualities that draw her to certain stories that happen to be the same as what draws me to hers. "This glimpse into the artist’s story invites us to connect it to our own, and in the best case scenario, allows us the ability to assign that song to our memories." Taylor accomplishes this brilliantly - why do you think I'm so desperate for the breadcrumbs that will lead to TS7? She also published a list of thirty lessons she'd learned before turning thirty, one of which included her love for counting down to special moments in her life. We searched for countdowns in every Instagram post and meaning in every caption, counting couch buttons and fence holes in an attempt to pinpoint a future release date. 

Then, someone pointed out that when Taylor signed on with Universal Music Group, she posted the below. How far can a Swiftie reach? I'd venture to say at least thirteen feet ;)

 

Could this eyeliner tattoo possibly hold meaning? Would the big announcement come at the iHeartRadio Music Awards? 

The day arrived. Taylor arrived on the red carpet in a pastel, sequined romper, accessorized with butterfly heels and a butterfly ring. Red carpet footage caught a pink ponytail. Then the show began, and a pink-haired woman crouched on top of an overturned car. My heart came flying out through my mouth - reputation 2.0?! Nope, Halsey. Don't get me wrong, I wasn't disappointed, except for the part where I was.

Kacey Musgraves was also slated to perform, featuring a secret superstar special guest. That must be it! Taylor was performing Butterflies with Kacey. But alas, Kacey sang Rainbow with Chris Martin (um… superstar? K.). We were left again to wonder what anything meant. Then, as the performance came to a close, Taylor hopped up to run off, looking a little too secretive. Was this it? A secret performance? But alas, the queen herself was just so enthusiastic to go take pictures with her fans over the commercial break that she got up a few seconds too soon.

 

 

Then I noticed that the audience members were wearing the LED color-changing wristbands that Taylor first made popular during the 1989 World Tour. While other acts may have followed her lead and started to use the technology to sync audience colors to the beat of the music, they are Taylor’s and Taylor’s alone to me. I ask again, what does it mean?? Taylor’s name had been the final special appearance announced in the opening credits. They saved the best for last, right? It was happening, a secret performance, or a release announcement. When she came up to accept the award for best tour (of which I can confirm), something more would happen, right? RIGHT?

Wrong. We played ourselves, again

And we got called out, too. In her acceptance speech for Tour of the Year, Taylor mentioned the time when she reading all of the horrific headlines in the months leading up to opening night: dozens of headlines predicting that the tour would be a massive flop and that she’d be playing to empty stadiums. The first lesson here is to never underestimate the power of her fanbase - we are the unforseeable factor. We’re here, we’re massive, we’re dedicated as frick and we’re not going anywhere. The second lesson here is that people can make forecasts and predictions all they want, but that doesn’t mean they’re going to come true. This is less than subtle shade at all of the writers who called for her failure, but I am certain that it was also a direct callout to stan Twitter for all of the rumors we started. Taylor smirked, because she knows exactly how to play us (like a violin), before promising us that we would be the first to know when there’s new music.

Well, it’s something. In the words of my friend Megan, I’m never hoping for anything ever again (that’s a blatant lie. TS7 at midnight).