Sunday, September 30, 2007

Lincoln & Kennedy

Here's some Sunday information for you to read, learn and recite at the office tomorrow.
I had forgotten some of these similarities.


Abraham Lincoln was elected to Congress in 1846.
John F. Kennedy was elected to Congress in 1946.

Abraham Lincoln was elected President in 1860.
John F. Kennedy was elected President in 1960.

Both were particularly concerned with civil rights.

Both wives lost a child while living in the WhiteHouse.
Both Presidents were shot on a Friday.
Both Presidents were shot in the head.

Now it gets really weird.
Lincoln's secretary was named Kennedy.
Kennedy's Secretary was named Lincoln.
Both were assassinated by Southerners.
Both were succeeded by Southerners named Johnson.
Andrew Johnson, who succeeded Lincoln, was born in 1808.
Lyndon Johnson, who succeeded Kennedy, was born in 1908.
John Wilkes Booth, who assassinated Lincoln, was born 1839.
Lee Harvey Oswald, who assassinated Kennedy, was born 1939.
Both assassins were known by their three names.
Both names are composed of fifteen letters.

Now hang on to your seat !
Lincoln was shot at the theater named "Ford."
Kennedy was shot in a car called "Lincoln" made by "Ford."
Booth and Oswald were assassinated before their trials.

And here's the "kicker": A week before Lincoln was shot, he was in Monroe, Maryland.
A week before Kennedy was shot, he was with Marilyn Monroe.

Lincoln was shot in a theater and the assassin ran to a warehouse.
Kennedy was shot from a warehouse and the assassin ran to a theater.

Weird.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

On a lighter note ...

HOW TO HANDLE IRRITATING SEATMATES

If you are sitting next to someone who irritates you on a plane or train - follow these instructions: (and maybe say goodbye!).

1. Quietly and calmly open up your laptop case.
2. Remove your laptop.
3. Start up
4. Make sure the guy who is annoying you, can see the screen.
5. Close your eyes and tilt your head up to the sky.
6. Click THIS link.

ALSO ...




This is why women have 2 hands.



This is why men have 2 hands.


Friday, September 28, 2007

Service

is the principle behind Step 12 of Alcoholics Anonymous.

The happiest people I know are those who have learned to live beyond their own special interests by discovering the rewards that come from giving of themselves.
Winfield C. Dunn


Recovery-related service comes in an infinite number of forms. If one can do nothing more than show up at a meeting, that is probably some of the greatest service we can give to one another.
After all, if no one came to meetings ...


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

to spend quality time with friends

that I am as honest with other humans as I can possibly be -- the rewards are certainly worth the effort

that tomorrow is Boston's 2-year sobriety birthday --
drop by and tell her howdy and wish her well!!

that tomorrow is birthday night @ Lambda Center -- we'll get to see Pam again and for the first time, Hayden will be here to join me on my birthday celebration (I'm afraid I will lose it when I speak; oh well, it won't be the first time)

that Hayden returns from Atlanta today and we can spend a few days together before he goes back home

It is a funny thing about life: If you refuse to accept anything but the best you very often get it.
-Somerset Maugham


Thursday, September 27, 2007

hAAlf nAAked thursdAAy

In the beginning, the founders of Alcoholics Anonymous would pass a hat during a meeting with the hope that a few attendees would contribute a coin or two.

In the years since, it's common to donate a dollar bill at a meeting. With rising costs everywhere we look, today many groups ask that we donate 2 dollars.

We all give what we can, but part of the magic of AA is the freedom we all have. I don't have to donate any money at all if I don't feel like it.

look at some personal pictures of more givers HERE


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I am usually comfortable with who I am

that I had the privelege of hearing a man with 9 months of sobriety tell how he came to be in AA. He is another reminder of the daily miracle we are all blessed with.

that I was born with so much

for changes ...
... in my thinking
... in my actions

to see a lot of visual progress in my bathroom remodelling project

If you observe a really happy man you will find him building a boat, writing a symphony, educating his son, growing double dahlias in his garden. He will not be searching for happiness as if it were a collar button that has rolled under the radiator.
-W. Beran Wolfe

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Spirituality

is the principle behind the Eleventh Step of Alcoholics Anonymous.

This was a tough one for me. I was so close-minded about anything spiritual when I first joined AA. I was still under the belief that spiritual = religous.

Finally, my life unravelled enough that I was ready to her what I needed to hear. Someone shared in a meeting that ...
AA is not a religous program. Religion is for people who don't want to go to hell. Spirituality is for those who have already been there.

Those few words opened the door for me just enough that I could get past a lifetime of prejudice against God and church. It was then that I could finally let go of my obsession to drink alcohol and stay drunk.

Step 3 has changed my life. And it still does.


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I've been in a serenity zone for the past week

that my perceptions rarely have any basis in reality

that I'll visit my Mom in her nursing home this morning -- after a workout at the gym and an AA meeting

for all the items in my RECOVERY TOOL BOX
(click to inspect)


that our new gym will open in a couple of weeks; in the meantime, another gym has agreed to let us members use their facilities

that I am an agent of Satan, per Mickey

that tomorrow is hAAlf nAAked thursdAAy (get those cameras out now!)

that the painter begins work in the bathroom today -- it should take 2 days

Creativity is God's gift to you. What you do with it is your gift to God.
-Bob Moawad


Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Perseverance

is the principle behind the Tenth Step of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Once I had learned about and put into practice the first nine steps, I was told that Step 10 is one of the "maintenance steps." As long as I remember that I'm not perfect and never will be perfect, step 10 offers me the chance to right my wrongs as they occur. It asks me to do so promptly and not waste time. This requires me to constantly inventory my behavior and never let up. If I let up, my character defects will jump right in and champion themselves. By persevering with my personal inventory, these defects can be kept minimal.

Make sense?


Oh yeah, a great example of perseverance is ...
"Don't give up 5 minutes before the miracle."
This can be true to so many of life's situations.

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that today I can't be perfect, but I can be excellent!

for gratitude meetings

that a newcomer is actually calling me on the phone

that I have Hayden's complete and total support for all things regarding my recovery -- I mention this after reading a few blogs the past several days in which spouses are not always supportive

that the tile guys will complete their work today on the bathroom #1 remodel -- the rest of the week will be the painters turn

"Do what you can, with what you have, where you are."
-- Theodore Roosevelt

Monday, September 24, 2007

Discipline

is the principle behind the Ninth Step of Alcoholics Anonymous.


I heard early on in recovery that nothing changes if nothing changes. It took a little while for this to sink in, but now I get it.

In order for this alkie to stop drinking, I first had to become aware that alcohol was making my life miserable. Nothing else, just alcohol. Then I had to become willing to do something about it. Such as stop drinking! Once I had stopped, it has taken the discipline to continue working a program of recovery, which includes making many chages in my life and lifestyle.


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I could be part of a successful fundraiser for the 2007 Houston Roundup which was held at Lambda Center Saturday night; I think it raised about $6000 over a 2-hour period

that my life today is better than it was when I was drinking


for a pretty quiet weekend, mostly by myself

that my sister and I met up at my Mom's nursing home, merely by coincidence

that I have yet to make a list of my pet peeves; why be negative?

that I didn't go ballistic when I was wronged by a retail salesperson (in my previous life, I would have yelled and cursed until I had made more than a complete fool of myself)

that I have never been in a police chase

Security is not the absence of danger, but the presence of God, no matter what the danger.
-Anonymous



Sunday, September 23, 2007

In case you didn't know ...

The Animal Rescue Site is in need of additional funds.
Check it out HERE ...



Now, for something more important.
This is news and information that you can take with you today.
Or later this week.

A recent study found the average American walks about 900 miles a year.

Another study found Americans drink, on average, 22 gallons of beer a year.

That means, on average, Americans get about 41 miles to the gallon.

Kind of makes you Proud to be American, DOESN'T IT?


Have a nice day.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

SATurday



Sometimes when you are angry with someone,

it helps to sit down and think about the problem.




An out-of-breath 7 year-old girl ran up to her grandfather, who was tinkering in his workshop, and confronted him with the universally dreaded (by adults) question. "What is sex...?"

He was surprised she'd ask such a question at her age, but thought if she's old enough to ask, she's old enough to get a straight answer. He wouldn't shirk his responsibility. Steeling himself to leave nothing out, he proceeded to describe for her all the variations of human sexuality he could conjure, careful to impress upon her the joys and responsibilities of intercourse and procreation.

When finally Grandpa was done pontificating, the little girl stood frozen, as though nailed to the spot, and looked at him with her mouth open, eyes wide in amazement. Seeing she was overwhelmed, he asked what caused her sudden curiosity.

His granddaughter shook off her reverie and replied, "Grandma says dinner will be ready in a couple of secs."

Friday, September 21, 2007

Brotherly Love ...


is the eighth principle behind the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.

I try my best not to make the steps any more difficult than necessary (for me). At this point, I am simply making a list of persons harmed during my lifetime. Most if not all of these people have already appeared on my 4th step. Additionally, it's time to become ready to make amends to such people. This may take a little more time, but my willingness to practice love for them AND myself is paramount.
Until I can attain this level of willingness, my progress in recovery may well be stifled.


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I stopped digging my alcoholic hole just in time

for some insight into how I keep contact with my HP

that we had an interesting meeting about Easy Does It

that I have been pampering myself this week; staying sober and enjoying recovery, a manicure and pedicure, a 2-hour massage, a new and stronger workout program with my trainer

that I have only spent 1 night in a hospital -- when I was 5 years old and had my tonsils removed

There are two kinds of people: those who do the work, and those who take the credit. Try to be in the first group; there is less competition there.
-Indira Gandhi

Thursday, September 20, 2007

hAAlf nAAked thursdAAy

FRIENDS


HERE are some of my HNT friends

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I don't have a clue what my life will look like a year from now, so I'll just keep trudging the road

for the gratitude lists that I continue to receive from various people in recovery

that some of my old behavior is history and nothing but a memory

that Hayden arrived in Atlanta safely and on time

for multiple reruns of The Twilight Zone on the Sci-Fi channel

the tile man starts work today @ the bathroom remodel


Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.
-Carl Bard

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Humility ...


is the seventh principle behind the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.

My favorite mantra since I entered the world of recovery is found on page 58 of the book, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions. It reads ...


"Another great dividend we may expect from confiding our defects to another human being is humility -- a word often misunderstood. To those who have made progress in A.A., it amounts to a clear recognition of what and who we really are, followed by a sincere attempt to become what we could be."

Nuff said.


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that my Mom's health remains stable 23 months after a major stroke -- she is not able to eat or speak, however (howz that Liz?)

that we read the Forewords to the Big Book (4th edition) yesterday at the 6:30am meeting

that when I don't get my way, I tend to experience life's necessary lessons

that I have finally realized this ... half of my problems are how I relate to other people; the other half of my problems are how I don't relate to other people

that Pam reminded me yesterday to work on my own character defects and not anyone else's

that my next-door neighbor knew who to call when I had a plumbing leak at 10pm last night

It is human to think wisely and act in an absurd fashion.
-Anatole France

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Willingness ...

is the sixth principle behind the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.

As much as anything, I'm grateful that I was willing enough NOT to give up 5 minutes before the miracle.

My beginnings in AA were not pretty I was only willing to attend some meetings; I had NO intention of stopping drinking. It wasn't until I became willing to try something new that I began making any real progress.

This seems to remain true today with everything I do.


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for some new realizations of the connection between progression - obsessions - compulsion as those things relate to my alcoholism and alcoholic thinking and behavior

that my self will does not run quite so riot these days

that I usually try to take my fellows feelings into consideration

that Designer Girl is back from rehab - check out her blog It's a Girl Thing

for some real progress with the bathroom remodel -- the sheetrock is all up now

Truth does not become more true by virtue of the fact that the entire world agrees with it, nor less so even if the whole world disagrees with it.
-Maimonides

Monday, September 17, 2007

Integrity ...




is the fifth principle behind the Twelve Steps of Alcohol Anonymous.

I am a nut about following the rules. This can be evidenced by the fact that I was a baseball umpire for a decade. I also officiated a number of other sports, but not as obsessively. I knew the rule book (which is quite complicated) forward and backward.

I try to take the concept of honesty seriously. I try to obey the rules and the law. When I screw up (I often do), I don't try to hide it (usually). There's still a lot of room for improvement here. But becuase I am sober, I am aware of this need to improve and am also able to make progress from time to time.

If you must judge me, please make that judgement by my actions rather than my words.


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that Saturday was my friend Sonny's twenty-fifth sober anniversary -- Sonny runs Lambda Center as its only full-time employeee for the past 20? years

for a beautiful weather day on Sunday, although we stayed home and had a quiet day

for my relationship with my sponsor -- he DOES NOT try to run my life nor would I allow that. He knows my story and he knows me. I can talk to him without reservation about anything and I think he feels that he can confide in me too. He gives me suggestions and then lets me decide what to do. This is my idea of the proper AA sponsor-sponsee relationship.

that Hayden and I have recently spent a lot of quality time together

that I have now owned my home for 4 years -- I closed on it Sept 15, 2003 and moved in on Sept 20th -- just a few days after getting sober

In pursuit of happiness, the difficulty lies in knowing when you have caught up.
-R.H. Grenville

BY THE WAY - on Saturday, I received the much-and-always coveted
Inspirational Blogger Award from Pam



Sunday, September 16, 2007

Drug Problem

I don't know who wrote this or where I got it from. I've had it on file for some time and thought I'd publish it today. Enjoy.

The other day, someone at a store in our town read that a Methamphetamine lab had been found in an old farmhouse in the adjoining county and he asked me a rhetorical question, ''Why didn't we have a drug problem when you and I were growing up?''

I replied, "I had a drug problem when I was young.

I was drug to Church on Sunday morning. I was drug to church for weddings and funerals. I was drug to family reunions and community socials no matter the weather. I was drug by my ears when I was disrespectful to adults. I was also drug to the woodshed when I disobeyed my parents, told a lie, brought home a bad report card, did not speak with respect, spoke ill of the teacher or the preacher, or if I didn't put forth my best effort in everything that was asked of me. I was drug to the kitchen sink to have my mouth washed out with soap if I uttered a profane four-letter word. I was drug out to pull weeds in mom's garden and flower beds and Cockleburs out of dad's fields. I was drug to the homes of family, friends, and neighbors to help out some poor soul who had no one to mow the yard, repair the clothesline, or chop some firewood; and, if my mother had ever known that I took a single dime as a tip for this kindness, she would have drug me back to the woodshed.

Those drugs are still in my veins; and they affect my behavior in everything I do, say, and think.

They are stronger than cocaine, crack, or heroin; and, if today's children had this kind of drug problem, America would be a better place."

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Saturday

YOUR AGE

This is pretty neat. DON'T CHEAT BY SCROLLING DOWN FIRST! It takes less than a minute. Work this out as you read. Be sure you don't read the bottom until you've worked it out! This is not one of those waste of time things, it's fun.

1. First of all, pick the number of times a week that you would like to go out to eat. (more than once but less than 10)

2. Multiply this number by 2 (just to be bold)

3. Add 5

4. Multiply it by 50

5. If you have already had your birthday this year add 1757... If you haven't, add 1756.
6. Now subtract the four digit year that you were born.

You should have a three digit number.
The first digit of this was your original number. (I.e., How many times you want to go out to restaurants in a week.)

The next two numbers are ...
YOUR AGE !

Friday, September 14, 2007

Courage ...

is the principle behind the fourth Step of Alcoholics Anonymous.

When I wrote my 4th step initially, it took some soul-searching to look back over the years and remember a few situations and people whom I had conveniently forgotten.

As I trudge the road of happy destiny, Courage is often required. Learning to live sober requires me to do things I have never done. With a little bit of courage, I get to experience a new life as a sober man.

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for a newcomer to the 6:30am Eyes Wide Shut meeting yesterday

that I can make some painful admissions to my therapist; he gives me good advice but I often do not have the Courage to carry it out; actually, more often, I just forget LOL

to read Katia's new recovery blog, Seeking the Cranberry.
Drop by and pay her a visit when you have the opportunity.

that I have a personal trainer that keeps me on a workout program even when I am too tired, or don't have the intestinal fortitude to keep on goin'

that there's been a load of comprisin' on the road to my horizon

y'all have a great weekend, please

In pursuit of happiness, the difficulty lies in knowing when you have caught up.
-R.H. Grenville

Thursday, September 13, 2007

hAAlf nAAked thursdAAy



A new commode will be installed here. Part of a complete remodel job in one of my bathrooms.

clicking HERE could be a Royal Flush


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that Tropical Storm Humberto passed just east of greater Houston last night and spared us some potential major flooding

that I got to hear (along with 30 others) part of an A.A. story yesterday that I really identified with

that I can still fulfill my living amends to my mother during her remaining days (maybe years)

that this emotional illness from which I suffer has its ups and downs and gives me plenty of fodder for my therapist each week

for the years I spent in West Africa, learning lessons that only a physical presence can teach

It isn't the mountain ahead that wears you out--it's the grain of sand in your shoe.
-Robert Service

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Hope ...


is the principle behind Step Three of Alcoholics Anonymous.

By the time I got to the rooms of AA, I had lost all hope that life would ever be anything other than dying drunk. I thought it was just meant to be. My fate. You guys told me differently.


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that we completed the fourth reading of the Big Book (of Alcoholics Anonymous) at yesterday's 6:30am meeting; we read a few pages each Tuesday and it takes about 14 or 15 months to get through the entire book

that I don't have to make any major decisions today -- it can all wait; this is the case just about every day of my life if I so choose

for the lunch bunch after each weekday noon meeting

that tomorrow is hAAlf nAAked thursdAAy - c'mon, get involved. I really enjoy the challenge of coming up with something new each week.

for fellowship with some guys yesterday as we went to the Houston Museum of Natural Science to see this

that the only clubs I go to these days are Lambda Center and Sam's Club

for some tangible progress on the bathroom remodel

Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.
-Dale Carnegie

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Faith ...

is the principle behind Step Two of Alcoholics Anonymous.

When I read Step 2 on the wall at the first AA meeting or maybe my second meeting, I was about ready to get up and walk out. I wanted nothing to do with a Higher Power. I had not been to church in 30 years and wasn't about to start now.

Three months and about 100 meetings later, I was finally able to muster the bravado to admit that you guys -- the people in the meetings - could be my Higher Power. I was having none of this God stuff!

I put my faith in you guys because you said I could. You said it would suffice. For now.

You were right.

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I am not going to write about 9/11 - I will leave that to others

that I much prefer to take action rather than think about it

for a wonderful meeting on Step 12 and input from many on numerous avenues of carrying the message

for the Twelve Steps of AA and an almost infinite number of recovery tools to help me get through the bad times ---
AND the good times too!

for the luxuries in my life, not highlighted by anger or resentment

for Johnny Depp

Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there.
-Will Rogers

Monday, September 10, 2007

Honesty ...

is the principle behind Step One of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Some prefer to think of it as being "cash register" honest. I think this means that we don't out-and-out steal from others. But there are so many more levels of honesty - or dishonesty.

Am I honest with myself? Always? Or do I try to justify or rationalize situations so I don't have to look at me? Am I ignoring a person or event because it might be too uncomfortable to deal with? Do I tend to just sweep problems under the rug? Let somone else fix it.

I guess we could all write books on this subject.

It's worth giving thought to -- every day.


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for the good half of mood swings

for a productive Board meeting at Lambda yesterday


for a completed assignment from a sponsee -- regarding patience -- something I always need to know more about

for reminders of why I go to meetings

for the new topic on SOBRIETY SOCIETY - drop by and throw in your sense

for Dr Wayne Dyer on PBS

for quiet nights at home with my favorite person (other than myself)

for the video tributes I have seen the past few days for Luciano Pavorotti -- I am not an opera fan, but his talent seems to transcend that -- I can watch him for days hours minutes at a time

Reputation is character minus what you’ve been caught doing.
-Michael Iapoce


Sunday, September 09, 2007

Step 10

I'm having a hard time getting some of you to open up your Twelve X Twelve and read it. So here's a little taste...

There are cases where our ancient enemy, rationalization, has stepped in and has justified conduct which was really wrong. The temptation here is to imagine that we had good motives and reasons when we really didn't.

We "constructively criticized" someone who needed it, when our real motive was to win a useless argument. Or, the person concerned not being present, we thought we were helping others to understand him, when in actuality our true motive was to feel superior by pulling him down. We sometimes hurt those we love because they need to be "taught a lesson," when we really want to punish. We were depressed and complained we felt bad, when in fact we were mainly asking for sympathy and attention.

Learning daily to spot, admit, and correct these flaws is the essence of character-building and good living. An honest regret for harms done, a genuine gratitude for blessings received, and a willingness to try for better things tomorrow will be the permanent assets we shall seek.

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pp 94, 95

Saturday, September 08, 2007

9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

In recent weeks/months I seem to have reserved Saturday's and Sunday's (ocassionally) for jokes or humorous pieces. So, for today, I give you this ...

Two Mexican detectives were investigating the murder of Juan Gonzalez.

"How was he killed?" asked one detective.
"With a golf gun," the other detective replied.
"A golf gun? What is a golf gun?"
"I don't know. But it sure made a hole in Juan."

By the way, the date, time and a hotel room number I once had in Lagos, Nigeria are included in the title of this post.





video

Friday, September 07, 2007

FRIDAY




todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for a good day yesterday

that my trainer has taken me to a higher level of working out -- this boy was doing some sweating yesterday

that the bathroom #1 remodel project got underway with the demolition of the walls, ceiling, cabinets and shower

that I have been writing this blog for 2 years and 9 months

Yesterday is history, Tomorrow is a mystery, Today is a gift. That's why it is called the present.
-Unknown

Thursday, September 06, 2007

hAAlf nAAked thursdAAy


With the enactment of a new Houston city ordinance, Lambda Center is now a non-smoking facility.

Sure glad I stopped smoking when I did. It's just one less thing I have to deal with.

Visit a few other friends whose lives have gone up in smoke, some of whom are flamers...
CLICK HERE


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that, for me, reality comes with responsibility

that all problems have solutions

that many solutions don't happen the way I want or envision

for good ideas from my therapist

for Hayden's support at meetings

for all the comments left here yeterday by Pam, Mary Christine, Scott W, Shannon, las, peanut, lisa, drew's sis, anonymous, syd, johno, kathy lynne and tab

that I may get a break on my health/medical insurance policy now because of stopping smoking

for memories of watching The Flintstone's when I was about 6 years old (1960) and that Walt Disney brought programs to me in living color

To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming, is the only end in life.
-Baruch Spinoza


Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Keepin' It Simple

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for all of you (you know who you are)

for all the things that come in sets of 12

Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.
-Theodore Roosevelt

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Time is a Gift, not a Threat



todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnfkul

that 1,460 days ago, I had been to nearly 100 meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous over the previous 3+ months although my alcohol intake was as heavy as ever

that 1,460 days ago, I drank 4 beers during the course of the day and night (a miracle in itself because that is only a fraction of my usual daily requirement)

that 1,460 days ago, the last beer of the day was at 11:30pm and it was the last alcohol I drank

that today I have an opportunity to see the world through sober eyes and a (somewhat) clear head

that I heard some things I needed to hear (or be reminded of) at the 6:30am meeting yesterday regarding patience

that I acted on a whim last night (unusual for me) and went to a movie by myself -- "Death at a Funeral" -- I highly recommend this very funny movie

Action springs not from thought, but from a readiness for responsibility.
-Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Monday, September 03, 2007

No Holiday for Gratitude


(click on the pic for a more detailed view)

EXPERIENCE

"That men do not learn very much from the lessons of history is the most important of all the lessons that history has to teach." -- Aldous Huxley

"Mistakes are painful when they happen, but years later a collection of mistakes is what is called experience." -- Denis Waitley

"The good times we put in our pocket. The hard times we put into our heart." -- Les Brown

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I so totally identified with someone who shared this in an AA meeting ...
"I don't do moderation very well."

that I am OK and just keep trudging, albeit as lightly as possible

that I know how to keep-in-check the life-threatening disease that I have

that my desire to lead a drama-free life must be worth something!

that one more dishonest politician is out of power, although he will receive $130,000 retirement income + many other senatorial benefits for the rest of his miserable life

that Scott W is a basketball fan

that The Astros ridiculously poor season will be complete in a month

To live only for some future goal is shallow. It's the sides of the mountain that sustain life, not the top.
-Robert M. Pirsig

Sunday, September 02, 2007

The Not-So-Good Old Days

June 2004

When I was 9 months sober, I got to Step 9 with my sponsor.
Time to make some amends.

We had only identified 3 major amends that I needed to make with others. One of those was with Hayden, my partner (actually, ex-partner at the time). He was living back in Trinidad and we communicated very little. I had some very strong resentments toward him.

But, in good AA fashion with the help of my sponsor, I made those amends (via email). Also, true to form, I asked him what I could do to make right some or any of the wrongs I had done him during those drinking days. His response was simple. "Just don't treat me that way any more."

Great.

September 2006

Hayden is back in Houston visiting for the first time. We make the decision to rekindle our relationship. I've changed. I have changed a lot. I have not, however, been in any intimate relationships since sober. My character defects come leaping out of hibernation. At first, very slowly. But as the months have progressed, new character flaws have emerged that I have never been aware of previously.

September 2007

As I type this today, we are on the rebound (once again) and love each other more than ever. My craziness (insanity?) flourishes. My words and actions seem to bounce off him. He often points out to me that in spite of my behavior, he is still here and has no intention of leaving me.

My problem is this : I repeatedly break the amends I made to Hayden back in 2004. Those amends have become hollow words to me. For this, I am now beating myself up. It makes me wonder why I can't stay true to those amends. I know I'm not perfect; far from it. I know it's all about progress, not perfection. I also know I need to discuss this with my sponsor and most likely work some steps on this.

Comments? Suggestions?

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Beautiful people

A very loud, unattractive, hard-faced woman walks into Walmart with her two kids in tow, screaming obscenities at them all the way through the entrance.

The door greeter says, "Good morning and welcome to Walmart. Nice children you've got there. Are they twins?"

The fat ugly woman stops screaming long enough to snarl: "Of course they bloody aren't! The oldest is nine and the youngest is seven. Why the hell would you think they're twins?..... Do you really think they look alike, dickhead?"

"Absolutely not," replies the greeter, "I just can't believe anyone would f*ck you twice!"

Security system (video)

video