LYON, FRANCE - JUNE 02: EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NO BOOK COVERS Taylor Swift performs at Groupama Stadium...
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Taylor Swift's Live Reaction To Singing "Fifteen" Puts Her Song In A Whole New Light

A giggle, some blushing, and a head kicked back… in love? Or irony?

by Michelle Santiago Cortés

“Fifteen” is one of those Taylor Swift tracks that perfectly encapsulates her diaristic, unapologetic, tender, and vitally universal songwriting. In one of the lines from the Fearless tune, Swift assures her younger self that there’s more to life than “dating boys on the football team” — but her big grin during a recent performance of the song suggests that maybe those teenage dreams are still sweet when they come true at 34.

Fans online are clinging to a moment from the June 2 stop of her Eras Tour in Lyon — during which Swift blushes and kicks her head back — and interpreting it as the involuntary response of a woman singing about her love or a moment of realization that this particular line has taken on a different meaning.

Looking at other lyrics from the “Fifteen,” which mainly cover first loves (and heartbreak), it’s certainly ironic to sing about letting go of childish hopes when it turns out that they’ve actually came true. (ICYMI, she’s in a relationship with Travis Kelce, who’s won multiple Super Bowls as a tight end for the Kansas City Chiefs.) Elsewhere in Swift’s discography, you can also see this sort of daydreaming and anxious soul-searching — who doesn’t know “she wears short skirts, I wear T-shirts / She’s cheer captain and I'm on the bleachers” from “You Belong With Me,” another Fearless track?

But perhaps the most crucial line to revisit from “Fifteen” comes near the end: “But I've found time can heal most anything / And you just might find who you're supposed to be.” The high-school hierarchies that play a significant role in Swift’s early songwriting might be always be part of her work, but now, she’s perhaps reached a place where she can have a laugh at — and appreciate — a former version of herself. And while it’s true that there is more to life than dating a jock — and Swift has certainly “realized some bigger dreams of mine” — being in love with a football player can still be one of them.