Penn State References You Didn’t Catch In ‘1989 (Taylor’s Version)’
Welcome to New York, Happy Valley!
Taylor Swift released her fourth re-recorded album, “1989 (Taylor’s Version),” last Friday. The 22-song collection of what Swifties call pop-perfection details Swift’s move to the Big Apple in 2014 and her experiences dating in the public eye.
Between the earworm melodies that ruled radio stations and Target playlists for weeks and the reinvention of her once-country music image, 1989 is one of Swift’s most iconic eras. While we haven’t all dated Harry Styles or traversed the paparazzi-ridden streets of New York City, there are more references to Dear Old State than you might’ve realized.
For the sake of this analysis, let’s call it “1989 (Penn State’s Version).”
“Like any great love, it keeps you guessing / Like any real love, it’s ever-changing / Like any true love, it drives you crazy.” — Welcome To New York
Hello, Penn State football.
This season has been a rollercoaster of emotions, with games close enough to have Nittany Lion fans’ hearts thumping under their coats. Penn Staters might find themselves taking wild guesses on the outcome of each game, hoping and praying that their beloved Nittany Lions will win, but we can never be 100% sure.
Still, Penn Staters are nothing if not loyal, and their love for their team is never changing, if you will.
“But you’ll come back each time you leave / ‘Cause darling, I’m a nightmare dressed like a daydream.” — Blank Space
Whether your cup of tea (or alcohol) is Champs or Cafe, Penn Staters just can’t help but come crawling back to the bars downtown every weekend. A few Dirty Sprites might taste like a breezy, sweet daydream when you’re playing pool with your friends in Champs, but waking up the next day is sure to feel more like a nightmare.
Even after dragging yourself through the worst hangover of your life, a $5 pitcher sounds too good to pass up. A little Smirnoff never hurt anyone, right?
“Remember when we couldn’t take the heat?” — Out Of The Woods
For half of the year, State College is freezing cold. For the other half, it’s the exact opposite. Anyone who has spent a summer at Penn State, whether taking classes or working a job, knows just how searingly hot the Happy Valley sun can feel.
When the sun finally starts to come out in the spring, Penn Staters thrive while lounging and playing games on the HUB Lawn. After a while, the heat gets to be a little too much. What can we say? We’re used to the cold up here!
“It’s 2 a.m. in my room.” — I Wish You Would
Are you writing a paper at the last minute, hoping to get at least partial credit? Did you just get back from the frats? Are you simply scrolling through TikTok despite having a 9 a.m. tomorrow? No matter the occasion, all Penn State students have found themselves still awake in the middle of the night unsure how it got so late.
You’ll probably pay the price of staying up too late the next morning on your walk to Willard, but hey, that’s college. How does the princess of pop understand the Penn State struggle so well?
“Now, did you think it all through? / All these things will catch up to you.” — Bad Blood
Listen, we’ve all skipped a class or missed an assignment every once in a while. But as the semester drags along and the homework starts to grow, you have to start picking your battles. You can only neglect your dropping grades for so long before they catch up to you (and your GPA).
Eventually, the papers will pile up and you might ask yourself why you didn’t think things through. Maybe you can get extra credit?
“Stand there like a ghost, shaking from the rain.” — How You Get The Girl
Happy Valley isn’t exactly a place known for having sunny days and warm weather. In fact, State College is said to have more rainy days than Seattle. Between the consistently below-freezing temperatures and dark, cloudy skies, Penn Staters have found themselves shivering in the rain more than once.
Whether at a particularly damp football game or just walking to class amid one of State College’s routine monsoons, it’s easy to feel like a ghost because of the chill in the air. Even in the winter, fluffy white snow turns to slush before we know it.
“The waiting is a sadness / Fading into madness.” — Say Don’t Go
Winter break is a blessing that all Penn Staters dream of throughout the semester. As much as we love Dear Old State, it’s nice to be home and have a break from the grueling classwork. The only thing that can make these few weeks bittersweet is remembering that final grades haven’t been released yet.
Did passing that final exam bump your grade up enough? Did your lack of participation tank your grade? Waiting to see those canvas notifications and constantly refreshing LionPATH is enough to make a person go crazy.
“Ooh, didn’t it all seem new and exciting?” — Wonderland
Oh freshman year, what a simpler time.
Going to class was exciting, going to frat parties was fun, and there was a light in your eyes that has probably been replaced with eye bags by now. Maybe Penn Staters aren’t falling down rabbit holes and getting lost in Wonderland as the years pass by, but it sure feels like it sometimes.
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About the Author
The thousands of teddy bears will be donated to Four Diamonds children.
The Lady Lions were last ranked in 2014.
“Andy will be here more just taking in everything and getting a feel for how we operate.”