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OPINION | GARY SMITH: Some are glad to miss Swift concert

by Gary Smith | July 21, 2023 at 1:00 a.m.

The Lovely Mrs. Smith and our youngest daughter did something over the weekend that I wouldn't do in a million years. And yes, I'm very OK with that.

Alright, some qualification here: there are lots of things the Lovely Mrs. Smith has done and/or will do that I wouldn't do in a million years. Most of them involve displays of good taste and personal wisdom on her part to such a degree that I sometimes wonder why she even married me in the first place. Hoping I'm the only one thinking this, but you never know. I get a look every now and then.

As to the actual reason she did marry me, I'm going to guess it has something to do with "I made her laugh." I'm hoping intentionally.

Anyway, what the Lovely Mrs. Smith and Daughter did was fly to Denver to attend a Taylor Swift concert, apparently along with many thousands of their closest friends.

There are lots of reasons I didn't go, but the underlying one is, well, I didn't want to.

For one, I try to stay out of the Denver airport as much as I can, with limited success. And that's not because I fly a lot. It's just that whenever I'm in the Denver airport, I get to spend a lot of time there. So much so that, if my next trip west follows the general pattern of previous trips, I will officially qualify to vote in Colorado elections based on time in state.

Seems the good folks at the Denver airport may have missed the memo that says the point of a terminal is to get you off one plane, on to another and safely to wherever you're going as quickly as possible. In their mind, the point is to have you land in Denver and sit there staring at the walls for hours.

And then there is the matter of going to a concert which involves crowds and Taylor Swift music. I mean, it's unlikely she was going to do Tina Turner songs just to placate me. I guess I could have asked.

Now this is not to say I object to seeing Taylor Swift perform. In fact, I actually have, way back when she was in Northwest Arkansas as part of Walmart's Shareholder Week concerts. Then, she was just a teenager who stood stock still in one place playing a guitar and singing songs about, apparently what all teenage girls sing songs about: having a boyfriend, not having a boyfriend, wanting to have a boyfriend, having the wrong boyfriend or wanting someone else's boyfriend. And horses.

Maybe not the horses.

From what I understand, her catalog subject matter has changed ... not at all.

Now I'm not here to criticize Taylor Swift, mostly because she doesn't deserve it and partly because even if she did, well, I'm not that brave. Her fans appear to be a passionate and colorfully dressed lot who are willing to sit for hours online just to get tickets to a concert. So you can only imagine what they'll do to even casual critics.

I am here to decry a troubling trend that things like Taylor Swift's Worldwide Domination (or whatever it's actually called) tour is generating. I call it the Backlash Syndrome. The idea is that whatever is going on in the world, if some one or group enjoys it, there must be an equal and opposite backlash. And thanks to social media and our overall inability to have an unexpressed thought, that backlash must be heard.

There apparently is a movie about Barbie coming out that has already drawn backlash even without the benefit of most people having seen it. Seems actual experience of something isn't required for people to hate it.

We love or hate solar power, battery-powered cars, fashion trends, most movies or television shows, actors and/or their spouses (depending on how the divorce is going), food and, yes, even some very successful and talented singers whose songs we just don't happen to prefer.

And that's not including unimportant stuff like politicians and legislation.

Not wanting to go to a Taylor Swift concert in Denver does not mean there is anything wrong with Taylor Swift or Denver. OK, maybe the airport. It is, despite recent trends, possible that not liking something doesn't mean it's bad. Just not my thing. Same with the movie about Barbie.

I will, however, share this. I grew up on Bruce Springsteen. And if you don't like him, frankly you're just wrong.

Print Headline: Sitting out the Swift craze


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