It’s August season! I know we all collectively listen to Taylor Swift at all times and in all seasons, but the month of August is special because it has its own song: Taylor Swift’s “August” might as well be this month’s official tune, since she regaining popularity online. The hashtag #SaltAir was even trending on Twitter in the early hours of August as everyone braced themselves to hear “August.” like there’s no tomorrow. There are over 60,000 videos on TikTok that use the official sound, and TikTokers are starting to compare themselves to either Betty or Augustine, the two main characters in the song’s lyrics. Some post photos and videos of themselves and ask their followers to vote for which girl from the Taylor Swift Cinematic Universe they are.
The hashtag #bettyoraugustine on TikTok already has over 600,000 views, and that’s where you’ll find creators wondering which fictional character from the song they are. Creator @madsbedumb_ uploaded a video with photos of herself and most of her comments decided she’s “a Betty” – except for one comment that thought the creator was “a Augustine”. @ebonymaii also participated in the trend and in her comments section we can see that most people have decided that she is “an Augustine” but it’s not a unanimous decision.
This uncertainty of telling whether someone is “a Betty” or “an Augustine” appears in almost every single video in this trend. In the comments section you’ll find people enthusiastically saying a creator is “a Betty like that,” but the same enthusiasm will be heard in the next comment as someone declares that the creator in question is most certainly “an Augustine.” ” Creator @ambermisao brought to light the confusion we all felt with this trend: How are we supposed to know who’s a Betty and who’s an Augustine?
But before we decide who is a Betty and who is an Augustine, let’s recap what we know about both. On July 24, 2020, Taylor Swift released her eighth studio album. folklore, which contained the songs “Cardigan”, “Betty” and “August”. Swifties then noted that the songs complemented each other and possibly represented the different points of view of the characters who were briefly involved in a love triangle. This theory was confirmed by Taylor himself Folklore – The Long Pond Studio Sessionsavailable on Disney+.
According to Taylor, the people involved in the love triangle are James, Betty and Augustine. “Cardigan” is Betty’s point of view, “Betty” is James’s, and “August” is Augustine’s side of the story. And through the beautiful lyrics of each song, we find out that James had that summer love with Augustine, but then decides to go back to his partner Betty. Augustine is then left heartbroken.
However, the songs don’t reveal the characters’ physical features or looks — which is why it’s so difficult to figure out who someone is just from their photos. With “Cardigan” and “August,” Taylor shares how emotional every girl is, her insecurities, and what James means to them. (In the end, Betty is the one who gets the guy.)
So it’s really up to you to figure out if you’re an Augustine or a Betty. And depending on what you’re going through, you may vacillate between either girl. Like all of Taylor’s songs, the characters in the song are up for interpretation. There are millions of versions of Betty and there are millions of versions of Augustine because they represent something for every person who listens and enjoys the song. That’s why TikTok users can’t come to the conclusion when asked if someone is a Betty or an Augustine — Taylor Swift’s beloved characters mean something different to each of us.