I first heard of Taylor Swift on MySpace (this was in 2006). I think it was right around when her first album came out. We're the same age and I would listen to her songs and read her MySpace bulletin blog posts and think she was so cool for recording music and having mermaid hair and being my age. I bought every album after that on the day it came out. I've followed her career and memorized all her songs and defended her to my friends and I just...I'm her biggest fan. I truly believe that! Me and every other 12 year old on the planet, I don't even care. I'm now a decade strong in unapologetic, non-ironic love for Taylor Swift. I know that a lot of people roll their eyes, but homegirl writes her own songs, plays like 5 instruments, treats her fans like GOLD, and has somehow kept her crap together and stayed down to earth despite being in the limelight for her late teens and early twenties. You have to respect that, right?
So I knew she was going to be in Arizona on the 17 & 18 but couldn't afford a ticket. Holy crap, tickets were so expensive! I tried and tried--quite literally hundreds of phone calls into radio stations--to win myself a ticket, but it was a no go. I really couldn't believe she'd be so close and I wouldn't be there. On Saturday night, out of curiosity, we looked up concert tickets. We were scrolling through and gasping over how much they were (some pit tickets were in the thousands!), we realized that there were also some really good deals on tickets that had been sold back to Ticketmaster, especially if I bought a seat by myself. We made the (split, rash, impractical, irresponsible, exciting) decision to...just do it. We bought one. It was still too much to spend, but David was so sweet and excited for me. It felt so silly to be going by myself, but I was honestly too excited to care too much.
On Monday, I got ready (wearing a 1989 shirt Kate made for me! That glowed in the dark!!) and headed to the arena. It. Was. Packed. I couldn't believe how many people showed up, and everyone had costumes and signs and they were singing and chanting...it was so exciting. I couldn't believe how much I'd lucked out with my ticket. It was directly in front of the stage, just a couple rows back--not in the pit next to the stage, but still really freaking close.
Right as Vance Joy, her adorable, talented opening act, was finishing up, an older gentleman came up and sat down next to me. He asked which seats were mine and explained he was in the ticket business and had sold someone four seats--two on each side of me, so their party was split up. He asked if I'd mind scooting down two seats so this mom and her three daughters could sit together, and I said of course. So I scooted down, and then he asked where the rest of my party was. I explained how I'd come alone, tickets were expensive but I just loved Taylor Swift, etc. etc. He told me then that he'd bought a pit ticket to take video for his website but didn't want to spend the whole concert down there and asked...if I wanted to trade him seats halfway through the show and go into the pit. I think I just stared at him with my mouth open for a minute before responding. I told him yes ("Yes! Are you sure? Yes. But you shouldn't! But yes!") but honestly wondered if he'd end up coming back because come on, the pit! At T. Swift! At this point I was a jumble of shaking hands and excitement because going into the pit or not, Taylor Swift was about to come on.
SO the show starts. Welcome to New York. She pops out of the GROUND, I start crying, it's incredible. Right after her second song ("New Romantics," in case you're interested), this guy shows up and says he'd already got the video he wants and I can head down to the pit with his ticket if I want. It hadn't even been half the show. It had been 1.5 songs! I was stuttering and yelling "Thank you! Oh my gosh!" over and over. He said he was happy to take my seat and enjoy the rest of the show sitting down. I ran around the arena (while frantically texting Dave and my mom"GOING INTO PIT I SWEAR GUY JUST GAVE ME TICKET GOING TO PIT OMG THIS REALLY HAPPENING RN") to get to the pit entrance with my heart thumping in my ears. I really didn't think they'd even let me in, it all felt too good to be true. But...before I knew it I was about 4 feet away from Taylor.
I don't even know how to put the rest of the night into words! It was easily the best concert ever. All of it. The dancing, the songs she chose, the interviews with her BFFs that played for a minute or two during costume changes, the stage that ROSE UP INTO THE MOTHERFREAKING SKY and rotated around, everything. Just bananas. I danced the whole time, screamed the words to every song, cried multiple times, took a couple terribly lit pictures, basically just lived up the best night ever.
And so. That's the story of how I ended up just a couple feet away from Taylor Swift for an evening, something I really don't think I'll ever forget or stop smiling about when I remember it.
OH AND...how amazing is the new Wildest Dreams music video?!