This week’s HTYH is the end of Bud’s story: It was a curious development for a self-centered, alcoholic like me to be concerned for another person. I was fiercely determined that my new prospect would get A.A., even if it killed him.
After we entered the meeting hall, my A.A. baby, like a homing pigeon, headed for the last row and the last seat. I said, “No Way! We’re going to sit in the first row. I don’t want you to miss anything.” The meeting started, the speaker was introduced, and he started saying the wrong things. It was a drunk-a-log all about his drinking escapades and he was the hero, he said nothing about recovery? My pigeon sat there with a blank-stare while I started projecting in an attempt to put my words into the speaker’s mouth. I’m with a character whom I’ve only seen once before and I’m nearly hysterical for his well-being and there’s no monetary gain for me? I’m intensely interested in helping him, for his sake and there’s seemingly nothing in it for me? What is this about? I’m confused. Why two drunks, who barely know each other, are sitting together? From this relationship, I can’t make a nickel. I know this because his wife told me he was broke- flatter than soup on a vest.
Here is a human relationship lacking in any material aspect; yet it exists. When you have a condition that is devoid of any material gain, what’s left? My new prospect is agnostic or atheistic and he’s sitting in an A.A. meeting where spirituality is practiced; and he’s too damned dumb to know it. Newly sobered people know nothing about A.A. and although most come to jeer, many stay to pray. They’re unknowingly standing before the alter of spirituality, but they have not a clue. I fully understand that generalizations are dangerous, but I’ll make one anyhow. Of the thousands of alcoholics I’ve known every one of them, in order to get sober, had to subscribe to something different than most of the so-called average, or general population. Alcoholics, in order to recover, must subscribe to different daily actions; acting themselves into proper thinking; rather than thinking themselves into proper actions. This was dramatically true in my case. During my drinking days, I was a dreamer. I was the ivory tower philosopher who intellectually floated above everybody else. I was a pink-cloud, fantasizing genius, who dreamed about what I would do if I were in charge. But that kind of day-dreaming caused me to end up a drunken slob. When I came to A.A. they said, “Don’t drink, read the Big Book, help out in the kitchen and shut-up.” I resisted my philosophical thinking and instead started doing A.A.’s daily actions. I didn’t believe that list of daily actions would work for me, but success happened anyway and if it happened to me, it can happen to you too. Faith without action is dead! The End.
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