Van Halen’s “Love Walks In” was a favorite song of my childhood, but it always confused me. The song sounds like a science fiction plot with references to space travel, alien contact, and space-age fashion (eight-year-old me mistook “silver lights” for “silver legs” and envisioned Princess Leia in shiny metallic tights). But then there’s that non-sequitor of “love comes walkin’ in.” I was annoyed—why was love was ruining a perfectly good space adventure by randomly walking in and stopping the story?
To help my inner child make sense of this mess, I revisited the song in a Self-Help Thursday session.
Hello, Sammy Hagar! Welcome to my practice, where I work with rock stars just like like you. I’m so glad you’ve come to see me about these disturbances in the fabric of your reality. You seem quite disoriented and I’d like to help. How about you tell me about what’s going on?
is all that it takes
to change your life, to lose your place in time
So you’re feeling a bit disconnected from the world around you? I hope you will tell me more about this alternate time line you feel that you’re on. Perhaps you are living in ancient Egypt or during the Bolshevik Revolution. Many of my clients are… but we’ll get to that whenever you feel comfortable. Tell me more about this “contact” you mention.
asleep or awake
coming around you may wake up to find
within your eyes
It happens at night while you’re sleeping and during the day while you’re awake? My, how stressful for a performing rock star like you. You think you’re on stage performing to a stadium full of screaming fans, and then this mysterious “contact” happens and you realize that you’re actually asleep. Or are you awake? No wonder you’ve been a little shaky.
now more than ever
And it’s happening more frequently, you say? Oh dear. That could be a signal that your condition is deteriorating. It’s a good thing you came to get help, Sammy. After these realizations occur, what happens next?
and then you sense a change
nothin’ feels the same
all your dreams are strange
love comes walkin’ in
Love? Sammy, “love” doesn’t quite fit in with this nebulous disorientation you’ve spoken of. Help me understand this connection.
waits for the opening
simply pulls a string
So when you say “love” you mean extraterrestrials. Ok, things make more sense now. Thank you for helping me to understand your code words—I appreciate your trust. What happens when the alien enters this “opening” and pulls the string?
some other time
you lay your sanity on the line
Yes, I can absolutely see the troubles you’re having with sanity, what with extraterrestrials—excuse me, Love—pulling strings in your openings, transporting you to alternate dimensions, and causing even greater instability in your fragile mental state.
reach back, remember with all your might
Ah. Some of my other clients have talked about this. The aliens—darn it! I’m sorry, I meant to say “Love”—erase the memory of the abduction, yet memories seep back in at inopportune times. Tell me about one of these hidden memories.
ooh, and there she stands
in a silken gown
Ok, that’s a helpful piece of information. “Love” is female and she has silver lights. Could they be from a spaceship?
Oh, sleep and dream
that’s all I crave
I travel far across the milky way
We’re definitely talking about a spaceship, then. It seems like this is an addiction for you, Sammy, and you can’t think about anything but Love and her space craft.
to my master
I’ve become a slave
’til we meet again
some other day
Sammy, let’s look very carefully at this relationship you have with Love. Love is disrupting your grip on your surroundings and causing you to become confused. Love is lying in wait to get in your openings, yanking on strings. The episodes are happening more frequently, and you feel enslaved to this desire to travel in Love’s spaceship. Is this a healthy way to live? Sammy, what would happen if the next time Love descended to whisk you away, you simply said, “Back off, Love! Take your extraterrestrial manipulations elsewhere!”
where silence speaks
as loud as war
earth returns to what it was before
Yes, silence is an excellent strategy! Demonstrate to Love that you won’t be subject to her whims anymore, and in fact, you are now so disinterested that you have nothing to say to her. Show her that you care nothing for her, and that she can leave Earth and its denizens—good, respectable denizens like you, Sammy—alone. I’m so glad you’ve come to this realization. Now our time is up, and it’s time for you to go out there and tell Love to piss off! Sammy Hagar is no one’s slave!
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