Taylor Swift’s 22: A critical analysis

I currently have a obscene economics assignment where I have to ‘critically evaluate’ various papers that discuss the economic impact the current situation in Syria will have on both the Middle East at the World.

It’s thrilling stuff.

However, actually researching the assignment seems like a productive use of my time so instead, I’m going to critically evaluate ‘22‘. A song by Taylor Swift that I feel is rife with inaccuracies that simply must be rectified.

So from someone who is 22 and actually has the ability to hold a boyfriend for more than a week before writing a song about him; here are the more accurate lyrics:

It feels like a perfect night to dress up like hipsters watch girls in our pyjamas
And make fun of our exes, Tony Abbott
Uh uh uh uh
It feels like a perfect night for breakfast at midnight assignment writing
To fall in love with strangers To cancel on our friends, eat ice-cream and google Ryan Gosling
Uh uh uh uh
Yeaaaah

We’re happy free confused and lonely overworked, poor, exhausted and confused at the same time
It’s miserable and magical miserable
Oh yeah
Tonight’s the night when we forget about the deadlines, our looming Hecs debts
It’s time to call our parents
uh uh

I don’t know about you real adults
But im feeling 22
Everything will be alright if you keep me next to you give me an assignment extension and a loan
You don’t know about me
But I bet you still want to keep reading my mildly incoherent blog
Everything will be alright if we just
Keep dancing complaining like we’re 22, 22

It seems like one of those nights a uni night
This place is too crowded expensive
Too many cool kids hipster students
It seems like one of those nights
We ditch the whole scene and end up dreaming instead of passing out from far too much wine

Yeaaaah
We’re happy free confused and lonely poor, unemployed, exhausted and confused in the best worst way
It’s miserable and magical sad
Oh yeah
Tonight’s the night when we forget about the heartbreaks, the ever growing graduate unemployment rate
It’s time to accept we’re going to live with our parents until we 30
Uh uh

I don’t know about you and your tendencies to want to be a real adult
But I’m feeling 22
Everything will be alright if you keep me next to you I stop comparing myself to you
You don’t know about me
but I bet you want to You saw me at the pub worrying about the state of our country
Everything will be alright
If we just keep dancing complaining like we’re 22, 22

I don’t know about you how I’m ever going to finish my economics paper, 22, 22

It feels like one of those nights
We ditch the whole scene our theory that we’re actually sane
It feels like one of those nights
We‘ll won’t be sleeping with our insecurities
It feels like one of those nights
You look like bad news someone I wouldn’t find attractive without a lot of wine
I gotta have you, I gotta have you

I literally don’t know about you have any revenue
But I’m feeling 22
Everything will be alright if you keep me next to you world leaders start being better people
You don’t know about me
but I bet you want to You hear me constantly rant about socialism, feminism and kindness
Everything will be alright if we just keep dancing complaining like we’re 22, 22

Dancing Worrying like 22, yeah, 22, yeah yeah

It feels like one of those nights every other night
We ditch the whole scene and start appreciating our lives more
It feels like another one of those nights
We won’t be sleeping because of assignments 
It feels like another one of those nights
You look like bad news procrastination
I gotta have you, I gotta have you

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Why boys who play guitar are actually Greek Gods:

Whatever you do, don’t fall in love with a boy who plays guitar. It’s solid advice that has been passed down from generation to generation. The premise behind it is simple, boys who play guitar have never had to work for a girl. Ever. All they do is play and girls throw themselves at them. It’s like magic. But it’s black magic and will leave you disappointed, heartbroken and drunkenly analyzing your life at 10am on a weekday.

Given I don’t heed good advice very often, I always fall for guys who play guitar. Now don’t get me wrong, the ability to play a stringed instrument isn’t the only requirement I have for a life partner. I usually don’t even know if a guy plays the guitar until it’s too late. But there seems to be an aura around guitar players that my body (and that of 99.99% of other females) respond to. And that response is usually ill-fated love. Now why is that?

Psychology tells us that most attraction has it’s roots in the unconscious desire to pick a good strong mate. Nerds and geeks are hot because they wear old fashioned jumpers we subconsciously want our kids to be smart. Athletes are hot because their bodies are pretty we subconsciously want our kids to be strong. Therefore, it makes evolutionary sense for women to find guitar playing men attractive because we subconsciously want our kids to be moody.

Wait. What?

I’ve done my research (this is a very pressing topic after all) and truthfully there is no real biological reason for loving guys that play guitar. However, there is a long standing cultural tradition that dates all the way to the Ancient Greeks that explains it.
It always has something to do with the Greeks. 

Meet Orpheus.
Orpheus played the ancient version of guitar called the lyre. He was a legendary musician, poet and prophet who had the ability to charm all living things. So basically he was a lot like Ryan Gosling with a guitar. Orpheus was so good at playing his lyre that birds, flowers and rocks followed him round everywhere he went. I don’t really understand why rocks would follow him as I’m fairly confident they don’t have ears but I digress. Orpheus married a women named Eurydice. Unfortunately though, Eurydice died on their wedding day. There are many different accounts on how she died (the Ancient Greeks weren’t that great with the whole accurate record keeping thing) but it’s not really important. Orpheus became overcome with grief, he played sad mournful songs that made the Gods weep and subsequently invented emo music. Even the rocks that followed him round became depressed.

Orpheus then decided to fully embrace goth, and travelled to the underworld to convince Hades to give him Eurydice back. At first, Hades said no, but then Orpheus played a song which made Persephone (Hades’ wife) cry. Maybe she too had a weakness for guys who play guitar. Or maybe Orpheus sang about the time Hades kidnapped Persephone and forced her to be his bride and the song just brought back bad memories. Either way, Persephone was overcome and Hades felt awkward so he told Orpheus he could have his wife back but with one condition (there’s always a catch).  Orpheus could lead his wife back to earth if he never turned round to make sure she was following.

Because I can’t resist putting a photo of Ryan Gosling in a post. And he has a guitar.

Unfortunately now, our story takes a turn for the worse as Orpheus had trust issues. Before reaching Earth, he turned around and subsequently Eurydice died (again). That’s the general gist of the story anyway. Other Ancient Greek writers (namely Plato) paint an even harsher view of the situation. Plato (rightly) suggests that if Orpheus really loved Eurydice, he would have chosen to die to be with her. So basically, Orpheus was a non-committal coward who wanted to cheat death and get his love back the easy way.

And so the tradition of the ‘guy with the guitar’ being irresistibly charming and yet unable to commit and generally being a wanker began.
Thousands of years have past, but little has changed.