I’m Feeling 22

So, this past weekend, I turned 22. Taylor Swift released a new single about just that thing. Coincidence? (Yes.)

And the thing is, I like it very much. It’s silly and fun and easy to scream along with while drunk, like Kimya Dawson without the addiction problems or depth. I mean, lyrics like:

We’re happy free confused and lonely in the best way
It’s miserable and magical, oh, yeah

Are painfully dumb, but they’re also really descriptive of the tail end of growing into an adult human being, which as a process is also pretty dumb. I mean, last week, I went out with coworkers and drank fancy bourbon in a cool bar when–not 10 minutes earlier–I had totally failed to parallel park in a non-embarrassing way, which is something that I should really Know How to Do by now. Continue reading

Female Revenge Ballads

Seriously what is this weaksauce bullshit?

The semester is nearly over, and I have potentially awesome New Year’s plans, and I am happy. As a result, I’ve been taking a break from the (now seasonally-appropriate) constant loop of hippy Christmas music, and have instead been rocking out to 94.9 The Bull, the Decatur area’s answer to all of your pop-country needs. Since the weather’s been nice, I’ve taken to blasting my music at the top of the Wee Honda Civic’s speaker capacity with the windows rolled down. My neighbors love me.

Folks are sometimes surprised by my tolerance for pop-country (and my straight-up love for good bluegrass). I will be the first to admit that this makes sense. Mainstream country music is often superproblematic. Sometimes, it’s just dopey and bad. Sometimes it’s all of Taylor Swift’s whining! I don’t know that it’s any more problematic than other genres, necessarily, (see Katy Perry’s visually arresting alien rape song) but the problematic things that crop up in pop country are not alien to my experience.

Like, other small children tried to witness at me for being Jewish back when we lived in Oklahoma. So certain flavors of Very Vocal Evangelism (and its friends Rigid Gender Roles and Woo America) make me wary, and they are more present in pop country than other genres.

But country music does one thing consistently well that I think is less of a Thing in other genres: female revenge ballads.

Continue reading