Hotel California 10/20/1976Posted by Dwight Mullen on Friday, October 20, 2017
41 years ago today, the Eagles recorded "Hotel California" live at The Forum in Los...
It's actually quite a dark song; about the way that drugs and indulgences of the pursuit of a lifestyle of self indulgence and extravagance (a metaphor for some people's version of the American Dream) can pull a person into a place where it seems they cannot escape.
I love the line that says: "Last thing I remember, I was running for the door, I had to find the passage back to the place I was before."
It indicates to me that even the deprived human spirit still craves and seeks redemption, when they finally realize that what they have chased after in life was not at all as beautiful and perfect as it seemed. (whether or not most would see that as a need for redemption, or a need to escape the pitfalls of their choices, is maybe a bit of a stretch, but I have to interpret it in terms of my own life's struggles)
While not a story about sunshine and happiness or the joys in life that many other songs may employ to lift our spirits; this song has a lot of parallels to how I have viewed my own struggles with various pitfalls in my life over the years:
- My suffering through 11 years of sexual abuse at the hands of Royal Cornelius (Neal) Crase, and surviving having been not only molested but raped (in both a metaphoric and literal sense).
- He raped me of my childhood.
- He raped me mentally and emotionally through manipulation, exposure to pornography beginning at the age of 8 years old, and putting me in a state of constant fear for myself and my brothers.
- And he physically used my body in multiple actions of sexual rape - orally and anally, over the curse of those years; on one occasion even holding me down and forcing himself into me as I told him how much it hurt and begged him to stop.
- The years of my teenage and young adulthood youth - where my focus on life was sexual conquest, and the constant pursuit and indulgence of physical pleasure; even if it was at the expense of those I was involved with to achieve those goals.
Between the ages of 15 to 25, I was sexually promiscuous, I abused my body with substances such as alcohol and hallucinogenic drugs. And I am not proud of many of the actions I undertook while under the influence of all of the above factors.
- Bi-polar and anxiety disorders. Something that I have successfully triumphed over time and time again thus far in my life; but that is ever lurking just under the surface of my mind's reality. This is a constant and daily struggle, even if I manage to show no outward evidence of my battles. When others don't see my pain and struggles, that is how I know I am winning.
The hauntingly beautiful music of this song allows me to take a brief, safe, glimpse into the memories of where I have been in some of those darker moments of my life, and reminds me that while I have triumphed (thanks to salvation from a He who is much greater than myself) , I must remain ever vigilant in guarding my path.
That's just me. that is how I have interpreted this song for my own personal experience.