Greetings, reader from the future! I see you’ve arrived here from the not-so-distant timeline of late October/early November, where certain things — glory; curses; the Billboard Hot 100 for the week of October 24; ticker-tape parades — have been settled. You have come, probably, to gloat, and, well — let me tell you that I understand.
But the logic of the present — my present, October 10, 2016, the occasion of Game 3 of the National League Division Series, in which the Cubs are up two games to zilch over San Francisco and looking very much like they will settle things shortly — compels me to say this: The Giants are going to win the World Series, and it is all because of Taylor Swift.
I know, I know, I know. The Cubs were the best team in baseball through the regular season. The Giants barely sputtered into the postseason at all. The Cubs are destined to break their curse. The Giants are spoiled. The Cubs are very good at baseball. The Giants make me say bad words in public. The Cubs — who have things like “offense” and a “bullpen” and “more than two trustworthy starting pitchers” — are going to win. The Giants are going to go home, and that will be that. They will have three spiny trophies to dry their tears on. No one will feel bad.
But here’s the thing — Taylor Swift just changed everything: On this day, International Giants Elimination Game Day (Part 2), she has confirmed the next Swift album will arrive in 12 short days. Maybe. Probably. For sure.
The theory — it is technically just a theory, much like evolution — that Taylor Swift’s albums are cosmically tied up with the postseason success of the Giants is nothing new, as our Michael Baumann examined back in September. The gist is that it’s Swift — and not, say, the all-powerful baseball gods, blessed be their names, amen — who really controls the flickering embers of Even Year Magic. Swift’s last three albums, Speak Now in 2010, Red in 2012, and 1989 in 2014, arrived in October of their respective years, and were followed weeks later by the Giants winning their first, second, and third World Series since moving to San Francisco in 1957. Since 2010, the process has gone like this: Taylor Swift releases an album -> The Giants win the following World Series. Taylor Swift does not release an album -> The Giants don’t even make it to the postseason.
So what were we supposed to make of this year? The summer of 2016 came and went with no Swift album in sight; the Giants, who had the best record in baseball over the first half of the season, fell down the standings tree and hit every horrible, withered elbow and regression to the mean on the way down.
But the times, my friends: They’re a-changing.
Last week, The Washington Post published an investigation into when we might expect Swift’s next album. After a study of the tea leaves — Swift’s propensity for the number 13, the structure of modern album drops, a statement last month by Gigi Hadid that Swift was “back to work in the studio” — the Post concluded that Swift’s new album will arrive on October 23. Add to this the fact that Swift inked a deal with AT&T this month that would conclude with a pre–Super Bowl concert in February — the kind of thing one might agree to participate in if there were, say, some new music to promote.
So now we return to Swift’s tweet from Monday morning: “See you here October 22!” she wrote over a picture of the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix in Austin — the site of the single non–Super Bowl concert she currently has planned. It will be her first concert since December 2015. It will be a Saturday night. It will be three days before the World Series begins. I’m just stating facts.
In other words: THE GIANTS WIN THE PENNANT! THE GIANTS WIN THE PENNANT! THE GIANTS WIN THE PENNANT!
See you soon, future readers. It’s not a jinx if it’s destiny.