There’s no overstating how big the Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce situationship is right now. Taylor is Taylor so anything related to Taylor automatically generates big headlines. And Travis is a two-time Super Bowl champion widely expected to one day be in the Hall of Fame – in America that basically makes you a king. But on top of that, it’s also how this thing is playing out like a rom-com. A sports god goes to see the pop princess in concert and tries, unsuccessfully, to meet her. But he perseveres, and invites her, through the media, to come to his game. When she shows up, he scores a touchdown. Seriously? They might have made this movie 20 years ago but now? In 2023? That pitch doesn’t even get a meeting.
And yet… somehow …this is what we’re watching in real life. As I wrote yesterday, Taylor is spinning her own fairy tale again and, so far at least, she’s not lecturing us for getting too invested in her private business. After all, observing a gladiator court a queen in a modern coliseum isn’t exactly discreet.
And now we’re getting even more detail. Some sources are trying to downplay their date on Sunday as one told PEOPLE that:
"Taylor is very focused on work right now and hanging out with her girlfriends. Travis invited her to the game, and of course she said 'yes.' She just thought it was a fantastic way to spend Sunday.”
Another source is telling ET that Taylor and Travis actually had spent some time together before their big premiere at Arrowhead Stadium. And TMZ is citing sources that they’ve “been together several times over the last few months” and it was always in a “very private setting”.
Right, but now that they’ve put themselves on blast, those private settings will be harder to come by. It’s not even been 48 hours and Travis is already experiencing the Taylor bump. There are multiple articles online now about his dating history. His Instagram went up by 300,000 followers and counting just 24 hours after the game. Sales of his jersey have increased by 400% …
Travis Kelce isn’t exactly a stranger to attention but the kind of attention he was getting before, with his Super Bowls and his SNL appearance, is amateur hour compared to the heat coming his way now.
And that’ll be interesting, to see how he manages it, to see how they manage it. Because remember, in Taylor’s past, some of them couldn’t handle the heat. Jake Gyllenhaal definitely couldn’t; Tom Hiddleston seemed like he enjoyed it too much; and Joe Alwyn may have resented it because it didn’t do all that much for him, if you believe some Swifties’ read on their breakup.
Travis though? Maybe he’s better built for it. A professional athlete at his level knows about pressure and knows how to block out distractions. Also, this dude was on a reality dating show, he has the thirst – which is not necessarily a bad thing; to be with Taylor Swift, you have to have to a certain amount of thirst. She’s not yet in her Dolly Parton era and she may never be, she may never want a Carl Dean, we’ll get there when we get there.
Until then, however, whoever f-cks with Taylor Swift has to enjoy the spectacle of it, just a little. More than a little. But not so much that he’s too eager or irresponsible with it. Like, um, Travis’s immediate predecessor Matty Healy. Taylor dating Matty exposed him to a different category of investigation. Those Swifties turned their Easter egg hunting into Matty Healy CSI, they dug his sh-t up so fast and dragged it on stage and it was over in a month. If there’s anything to find with Travis, they will find it.
Now there’s a turnaround, right? The difference in the reaction to Taylor + Matty vs Taylor + Travis?! Some of her stanniest stans couldn’t defend it. And now they’re buying football jerseys for the first time in their lives! Like, even if Taylor and Travis ultimately amount to nothing, at least she’s succeeded in serving up a palate cleanser.
So far though, at least at the time of this writing, everything is looking like the opposite of Matty. Right wing blowhards are mad because the culture’s new power couple consists of a megastar who supports reproductive rights, 2SLGBTQ+ rights, Black Lives Matter, and has encouraged new voter registration; and an NFL player who just appeared in a commercial with his mom encouraging vaccinations. We’re off to a good start.
PS: We’re doing a Taylor throwback with a Blake Lively cameo today at The Squawk in our latest newsletter. Or is it a Blake Lively throwback with a Taylor cameo? Come join our gossip nostalgia if you haven’t already subscribed – here!