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If you're the parent of a Gen Z child, there's a good chance Taylor Swift has monopolized your life over the last couple weeks. It started with her recent album release at midnight on October 21st. Actually it started back in August when she announced the release date and after two months of anticipation, I was just as excited for the big moment to arrive as the two Swifties who take up residence in my house. (Swifties are what die-hard Taylor Swift fans are called for those of you who are a little slow on the uptake.) I didn't really care about the album - I was just sick of all the hype. Turns out October 21st was just the beginning of the TS whirlwind I was somehow caught up in. I bowed out of the Swiftie's request for me to stay up until midnight with them for the big moment. They were not shocked by my decision. It's a good thing I didn't take the bait for 'cool mom' status because - guess what? There was bonus material launched at 3 a.m. and let me just tell you - in the words of my teenage daughters - it slayed. That means it was really awesome according to the teen lingo dictionary.

Every chauffeuring excursion I have had the pleasure to provide my daughters between October 21st and today have featured Taylor Swift's Midnight 3 a.m. addition on shuffle NON STOP. And they know EVERY word. How do they already know every lyric to 20 songs? I barely know the chorus of any of them and believe me, it's not for lack of listening. Which brings me to my next point - I think my brain has retired. There's no room left for additional knowledge. It's at capacity. Done. Checked out. And you want to know why? Because aside from the obvious overload of information pertaining to meal planning and car pooling, there's a disproportionate chunk of my brain dedicated to - wait for it - 1980's song lyrics. Warrant, Journey, G&R, Def Leppard, Skid Row, Motley Crew, Poison, and of course, my personal favorite, Bon Jovi. They're all in there and they're not leaving. Not even to make room for Taylor.

It's a shame really because on the heels of her album release, TS announced her 2023 tour dates. Now IF we can score tickets, I see no way to skirt this event. I even offered the girls $100 each to stream the show with any number of friends at our house with any food they want. Like literally - I would grill steaks for everyone if it meant sidestepping the strategizing that comes with procuring tickets to a coveted show not to mention the logistics involved in actually attending said show. Because here's the thing. Normal people could just hope to get tickets, and if they do, drive to the venue, maybe get a bite to eat, enjoy the show, and drive home. But we aren't normal people. We're a household of seven which makes EVERYTHING more complicated. Granted only two of our five kids have any actual interest in going to the show, but two of their younger counterparts have severe jealousy issues when their older sisters get to do everything and "we just have to stay home and literally do nothing." But whatever - suck it buttercup is what I say. Their whining is just an annoying headache I don't really need. The really tricky part of the whole thing is the friends. Each Swiftie has her own posse of fellow Swifties all of whom have visions of their posses going to the show together, sitting together, and somehow getting transported to and from the event together. Unfortunately I don't own a church van. Or have insider connections to score twenty tickets together. I don't even know if I have the resources to score a ticket, let alone 20.

The process to get tickets for this thing is insane. There's some kind of pre-sale for "verified fans." I have enlisted every single family member with a unique email address to become one of these verified fans. They graciously agreed. On November 14th, there's a big reveal. Only a handful of these verified fans will actually become verified fans and be granted the holy grail - an access code. BUT this access code doesn't guarantee a ticket. If you strike out on the whole verified fan debacle, that very afternoon another handful of tickets is released to Capital One card holders. This pissed me off royally because for the last concert we HAD to attend (Harry Styles), an Amex card granted early access. Figuring this was standard operating procedure for concerts, and predicting a long road ahead of ticket-procuring, I became an Amex cardholder and thought I had future concerts in the bag. False. I have no intention of opening a new line of credit every time a new act comes to town, but lucky for me (actually, lucky for my daughters), we have relatives to mooch off of. Finally, if you fail on both the verified fan and Capital one attempts, you join the masses and line up with the riff-raff for general sales.

My point after all this overexplaining is this: if I'm making all this effort to escort my children to a concert, shouldn't I be able to belt out the lyrics to the songs with the rest of the Swifties? A concert is so much more fun when you can sing off-key and collab with Taylor when she points the microphone in the audience's direction. But unless she's covering Bed of Roses, I'll just have to resort to embarrassing my daughters with my dance moves instead of my singing voice. I may not be able to join in the singing, but mama's got some moves that might just get me out of concerts for the next ten years.

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