Thursday, April 30, 2009


click on the pic to enlarge it

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for steps 3 and 11 and the roles they play daily in my recovery

that my sponsor showed me the way and continues to be a fine example

that I heard the short AA story of Barbara L. yesterday. I don't know her very well even though I've seen her around Lambda Center the entire time of my sobriety. Today, I know her much better.

Happiness makes up in height for what it lacks in length.
-Robert Frost

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


Ping Pong Master

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that we aren't a glum lot
that we absolutely insist on enjoying life
that we try not to indulge in cynicism
that we think cheerfulness and laughter make for usefulness
that we have been given the power to help others
~~~ the above statements are all on page 132 of Alcoholics Anonymous, aka The Big Book

for a couple of hours spent being silly at The Galleria with some guys from Lambda

You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him.
-James D. Miles

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Susan Boyle, before and after

Whatcha think?

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I find it pretty easy to let things go that are bothering me -- most of the time!

it's all about acceptance

that I led a meeting last night at Lambda about ... acceptance!

for the importance of serenity to a recovering alkie like me

that Scott W was at the meeting last night

that I woke up a few minutes ago to lots of thunder and lightning (I loves bad weather and storms)

There are no more hours in a bad day than in a good one!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Hey there!

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for a first step meeting yesterday when I am always reminded of my unmanageability during my drinking years

that I have been asked to lead an AA Beginner's meeting tonight

that a friend celebrated her 20th year of continuous sobriety at her home Friday night with a little party. Scott W. and I both attended, each with our 5 years of sobriety. A notepad was passed around and each attendee was asked to list their own number of years of being sober. The total was 502 years. Amazing.

for the years of entertainment and humor given us by Bea Arthur. In fact, I still watch Golden Girls often, several times each week. It's as fresh as if it were filmed yesterday.

for a really fun outing to see the Astros (again) yesterday and they won again! We had great seats, just 10 rows from the field behind 3rd base, courtesy of a friend who could not attend.

~~ As I was walking along I noticed that one or two leaves had fallen from the trees. This may have been due to the slight breeze that was blowing. I left the leaves where they were on the ground and carried on walking.

Never mistake knowledge for wisdom. One helps you make a living, the other helps you make a life.
-Sandra Carey

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Saturday, April 25, 2009


Scott sent me this in an email. I think I smiled the whole time I was watching it.

Friday, April 24, 2009

A Foot and Some Steps

I've seen this before, but I guess I conveniently forgot about it. Someone emailed it to me the other day.

You have to try this please, it takes 2 seconds. I could not believe this!!! It is from an orthopaedic surgeon............ This will boggle your mind and you will keep you trying over and over again to see if you can outsmart your foot, but, you can't. It's pre-programmed in your brain!

1. Without anyone watching you (they will think you are GOOFY......) and while sitting at your desk in front of your computer, lift your right foot off the floor and make clockwise circles.

2. Now, while doing this, draw the number '6' in the air with your right hand. Your foot will change direction.

I told you so!!! And there's nothing you can do about it!
You and I both know how stupid it is, but before the day is done you are going to try it again, if you've not already done so.

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for A.A.'s Twelve Steps, which, if practiced as a way of life, can expel the obsession to drink and enable the sufferer to become happily and usefully whole.
(Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, page 15)

that I no longer have an obsession to drink alcohol
that I'm no longer a sufferer
that I'm often happy
that I may even be usefully whole (whatever that is)

that I plan on a lack of participation in my character defects today

that I have Step 10 at my disposal for those times today when I forget about my desire to not participate in my character defects

that I will go to 3 AA meetings today (as I do every Friday)

An ounce of loyalty is worth a pound of cleverness.
-Elbert Hubbard

Thursday, April 23, 2009

It's all about GREEN!

It was Green Day at Minute Maid Park where the Houston Astros play.
I got this nifty green Astros hat.

My life is now complete.

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I remember what I did last night and to whom I did it

that I shared on group level about one of my isolation triggers and how I tackled it. Basically, I made myself accountable to someone. I shared this in the hope that someone might benefit from my experience even though I felt it made me look very weak-minded. This is new stuff for me.

for the majority of the time when I can have a positive attitude

that I went to the baseball game last night with somone who was afraid to go by himself because he'd never been without drinking -- he did just fine and it was good to see someone tackle one of their fears

that I'm not afraid to try new things usually, except brocolli

There is no one luckier than he who thinks himself so.
-German Proverb

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

I need a title

Two men, one American and an Indian were sitting in a bar drinking shot after shot.

The Indian man said to the American, “You know my parents are forcing me to get married to this so called homely girl from a village whom I haven’t even met once.’
We call this arranged marriage. I don’t want to marry a woman whom I don’t know or love.
I told them that openly and now have a hell lot of family problems.”

The American said, “Talking about love marriages... I’ll tell you my story.”

I married a widow whom I deeply loved and dated for 3 years.. “After a couple of years, my father fell in love with my step-daughter and married her, so my father became my son-in-law and I became my father’s father-in-law.”

Legally now my daughter is my mother and my wife my grandmother.

More problems occurred when I had a son. My son is my father’s brother and so he is my uncle.

Situations turned worse when my father had a son. Now my father’s son, my brother is my grandson.

Ultimately, I have become my own grand father and I am my own grandson.

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for a great meeting topic yesterday -- One Day at a Time and how it refers to my entire recovery and not just staying sober. Every day when I awaken, I must begin my recovery all over again. All I have is today. This does not discount having a number of days of continuous sobriety which gives me clarity of thought and provides an example to others that it can be done.
for time spent with others who are just like me

for the freedom and happiness I get when I can practice Step 3 (as I understand it)

Always do right. This will gratify some people, and astonish the rest.
-Mark Twain

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Pam sent me this link that shows how the International Space Station has progressed and grown since it was begun. CLICK HERE

todAAy i AAM grAAteful & thAAnkful

that being sober is OK

that practicing Step 7 is OK

that Mary Christine is OK

that I'm OK and you're OK

that the Astros will probably be OK

We either make ourselves happy or miserable. The amount of work is the same.
-Carlos Castaneda

Monday, April 20, 2009

No soup for you!

This man had what he thought was the best tattoo in the world...

... until he went to prison.

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for the little fundraiser we had at Lambda -- A Country Ho-Down! Music and dancing. Food. Fun. Fellowship.

that I got to hear Jay F. share his story of experience, strength and hope for the first time

that we attended a one-year celebration of an AA buddy on a beautiful Sunday afternoon around a pool with plenty of good food

for the return of a friend to the rooms of AA after a 2-year absence

An ounce of loyalty is worth a pound of cleverness.
-Elbert Hubbard

Sunday, April 19, 2009


copied from an email someone sent me ...

Too many people put off something that brings them joy just because they haven't thought about it, don't have it on their schedule, didn't know it was coming or are too rigid to depart from their routine. I got to thinking one day about all those women on the Titanic who passed up dessert at dinner that fateful night in an effort to cut back. From then on, I've tried to be a little more flexible.

How many women out there will eat at home because their husband didn't suggest going out to dinner until after something had been thawed? Does the word 'refrigeration' mean nothing to you? How often have your kids dropped in to talk and sat in silence while you watched 'Jeopardy' on television?

I cannot count the times I called my sister/friend (etc.) and said, 'How about going to lunch in a half hour?' She would gas up and stammer, 'I can't. I have clothes on the line. My hair is dirty. I wish I had known yesterday, I had a late breakfast, It looks like rain...'

And my personal favorite: 'It's Monday.' She died a few years ago. We never did have lunch together.

Because Americans cram so much into their lives, we tend to schedule our headaches. We live on a sparse diet of promises we make to ourselves when all the conditions are perfect! We'll go back and visit the grandparents when we get Steve toilet-trained. We'll entertain when we replace the living-room carpet. We'll go on a second honeymoon when we get two more kids out of college. Life has a way of accelerating as we get older. The days get shorter, and the list of promises to ourselves gets longer. One morning, we awaken, and all we have to show for our lives is a litany of 'I'm going to,' 'I plan on,' and 'Someday, when things are settled down a bit.' When anyone calls my 'seize the moment' friend, she is open to adventure and available for trips. She keeps an open mind on new ideas. Her enthusiasm for life is contagious. You talk with her for five minutes, and you're ready to trade your bad feet for a pair of roller blades and skip an elevator for a bungee cord. My lips have not touched ice cream in 10 years. I love ice cream.. It's just that I might as well apply it directly to my stomach with a spatula and eliminate the digestive process. The other day, I stopped the car and bought a triple-Decker. If my car had hit an iceberg on the way home, I would have died happy.

Now...go on and have a nice day.

Do something you WANT to......not something on your SHOULD DO list. If you were going to die soon and had only one phone call you could make, who would you call and what would you say?

And why are you waiting?

Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Vocal People

Done with no musical instruments except humans.

... and these are for Steve E. in case he needs them.

Two vultures board an airplane, each carrying two dead raccoons. The stewardess looks at them and says, “I’m sorry, gentlemen, only one carrion allowed per passenger.”

Two boll weevils grew up in South Carolina. One went to Hollywood and became a famous actor. The other stayed behind in the cotton fields and never amounted to much - he became known as the lesser of two weevils.

Two Eskimos sitting in a kayak were chilly, so they lit a fire in the craft. Unsurprisingly it sank, proving once again that you can’t have your kayak and heat it too.

A three-legged dog walks into a saloon in the Old West. He slides up to the bar and announces: “I’m looking for the man who shot my paw.”

Did you hear about the Buddhist who refused Novocain during a root canal? He wanted to transcend dental medication.

A group of chess enthusiasts checked into a hotel and were standing in the lobby discussing their recent tournament victories. After about an hour, the manager came out of the office and asked them to disperse. “But why?” they asked, as they moved off. “Because”, he said, “I can’t stand chess-nuts boasting in an open foyer.”

Friday, April 17, 2009

the famous "cat plant"

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that the first page and a half of A Vision For You was written for me. (see Chapter 11, page 151, ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS)

that working with another alcoholic works for both of us -- a sponsee and I re-read Step 6 yesterday and discussed in in length. Great stuff!

that talking about my problems with another human has a tendency to greatly reduce the enormity of those problems

for caffeinated coffee

Adversity is another way to measure the greatness of individuals. I never had a crisis that didn't make me stronger.
-Lou Holtz

Thursday, April 16, 2009


todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that my Higher Power (a power I stay in frequent contact with) makes it so damn easy to stay sober and in recovery

to get to listen to Tracey R. relate some of her experience, strength and hope yesterday; she really is a miracle!

that although I (we) are going through some difficult personal issues right now, I know that things will work out just the way they should

that Kenny (Recovery Road) celebrates 5 years of continuous sobriety today. Kenny has endured numerous health problems since he stopped drinking and now he's getting married. He is a wonderful example of living life on life's terms. I had the honor and pleasure of meeting Kenny about 3 years ago while I was in London. We rendezvoused at a pub, for convenience sake. Happy Anniversary Kenny!!!

I published this early due to a scheduled Blogger outage

Worry is as useless as a handle on a snowball.
-Mitzi Chandler

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

a taxing day

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that we finished reading Chapter 8 (To Wives) yesterday at the 6:30am meeting. It contains some great pre-Al-Anon principles.

for my 3 sponsees -- Practical experience shows that nothing will so much insure immunity from drinking as intensive work with other alcoholics. It works when other activities fail. ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, page 89

that my sister has undergone a variety of medical testing lately and has been pronounced cancer-free -- she will require some surgery on her woman parts, but she should be OK. I'm really glad she finally got health insurance last year, otherwise, well, I don't wanna think about it.

for the concept of paying quarterly taxes -- I'm getting a very comfortable refund back. Whooppee!

Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat.
-F. Scott Fitzgerald

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

italics & parentheses

todAAy i AAM grAAteful & thAAnkful

for Step 6 and the awareness it gives me (when I think about it)

for so many opportunities to help others (almost always in little ways, but it's enough to make a difference to them and me)

that I enjoy doing the things that are necessary for me to take care of myself (except eating the proper diet)

Scott W emailed this video clip from Britain's Got Talent (the UK version of American Idol). It's 7 minutes long but well worth watching.

Many of our fears are tissue-paper-thin, and a single courageous step would carry us clear through them.
-Brendan Francis

Monday, April 13, 2009

in black and white

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for a very peaceful weekend -- I'm really trying to recognize and enjoy my freedom these days

that one of my sponsee's celebrated 6 months of continuous sobriety yesterday -- he's 59 years old and hasn't been sober this long for 40 years.

that PJ (It's a Girl Thing) celebrated 2 years clean and sober on the 10th. She got away from posting on her blog for awhile, but has returned lately. Drop by and wish her well if you get a chance.
it's Findon's (The Rapacious Creditor) 21st sober anniversary. Go by and see him too, but remember he's in the UK, so be prepared to stay awhile.

that an old friend found me on Facebook. She was my prom date back in 1972. Yes! She!! We have written each other and updated on our lives over the past 37 years. She lives in Boulder, Colorado. (I included that last part just for MC)

Always be nice to people on the way up; because you'll meet the same people on the way down.
-Wilson Mizner

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Safety Lesson

Today's safety lesson.......

N-E-V-E-R, E-V-E-R,
urinate on a 220 watt 3 phase electric fence!

Friday, April 10, 2009

and now, for something a little different...

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

for faith - in my HP and that just about everything will happen the way it should

that no serious injuries can be attributed to this blog -- my safety record is flawless! (so far)

for Steve's post yesterday. It inspires me to write this ... As you may know, I am and always have been a car enthusiast. When I was young (probably about 6 or 7) my dad promised me that we'd build a go-kart racer. It would have a lawn mower engine on it and I could drive it on the street around the house. By the time I was 10 or 11, that promise had not been realised, but I was still waiting. And waiting. And waiting. Finally, I got my driver's license at 16 and it didn't seem so important. But for those 10 years, I asked my dad to "please, let's build that go-kart" and the answer was always "soon, son, we'll do it soon."
I never forgave him for that disappointment until I worked the steps of Alcoholics Anonymous at the age of 49.

We can never live in the past as if it were our true home…. And it is a good thing that God draws this veil over the past even without our asking. In so doing, He allows us to live today for tomorrow with just the few memories we need of what was.
-Karl Barth

NOTE: I don't practice any religion, but here's my best wishes to all of you for a Happy Easter.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Paying attention

This table was for sale on eBay.
It's being sold by a man. How do I know it's being sold by a man?

Someone will get the answer and comment on it. If you can't figure it out, keep checking back on the comments.

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I probably have a little more clarity of thought today than I did yesterday because I have one more day of staying sober

to hear David D. tell a small part of his story yesterday; it was mostly about the importance of the AA steps in his life

for service work in its infinite forms

for the incredibly great weather we're experiencing -- the temp range yesterday was 46 - 83 but I don't believe I saw a cloud at all

for early breakfast yesterday with Hayden and Kimberley

If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.
-Booker T. Washington

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

not much happenin'

todAAy i AAM grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I had very little to say yesterday -- in 2 different AA meetings, at the gym, at lunch with friends, at the barbershop, with Hayden --- but I was peaceful and serene the entire day

that I really, really enjoy being in an AA meeting

that I may be used, but I'm still crispy! LOL

To be nobody but yourself, in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle that any human being can fight--and never stop fighting.
-E.E. Cummings

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Maxine returns

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that only now, on my 2,041st day of continuous sobriety, I have heard that BIG Popping sound. Any of you know what I mean?

that good judgement comes from experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgement

that I finally got a safe deposit box at the bank

the following quote from A. Lincoln reminds me of my short tenure on the Board of Directors of a Homeowner's Association...

Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.
-Abraham Lincoln

Monday, April 06, 2009

More is being revealed

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I am still sober after a wonderful weekend. More is being revealed.

that I sat in on a meeting where the topic was sponsorship. I learned some things, including the fact that some of the people to whom I really look up to in recovery have not had a sponsor for many years. I was surprised. More is being revealed.

for my relationship with my partner -- we are both very independent people and we give each other plenty of space -- I have only recently realised the extent of the freedom that he allows me within our relationship. Previously, I tended to focus more just on the freedom I give him. I actually feel that I've had another awakening - a relationship awakening. More is being revealed.

that the regular baseball season begins today! I don't know how my beloved Houston Astros will do. We'll just have to wait and see.
More is being revealed.

The measure of a life, after all, is not its duration, but its donation.
-Corrie Ten Boom

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Best friends

Four friends, who hadn't seen each other in 30 years, reunited at a party.
After several drinks, one of the men had to use the rest room. Those who remained talked about their kids.

The first guy said, 'My son is my pride and joy. He started working at a successful company at the bottom of the barrel. He studied Economics and Business Administration and soon began to climb the corporate ladder and now he's the president of the company. He became so rich that he gave his best friend a top of the line Mercedes for his birthday.'

The second guy said, 'Darn, that's terrific! My son is also my pride and joy. He started working for a big airline, then went to flight school to become a pilot. Eventually he became a partner in the company, where he owns the majority of its assets. He's so rich that he gave his best friend a brand new jet for his birthday.'

The third man said: 'Well, that's terrific! My son studied in the best universities and became an engineer. Then he started his own construction company and is now a multimillionaire. He also gave away something very nice and expensive to his best friend for his birthday: A 30,000 square foot mansion.'

The three friends congratulated each other just as the fourth returned from the restroom and asked: 'What are all the congratulations for?' One of the three said: 'We were talking about the pride we feel for the successes of our sons. What about your son?'

The fourth man replied: 'My son is gay and makes a living dancing as a stripper at a nightclub.' The three friends said: 'What a shame... what a disappointment.' The fourth man replied: 'No, I'm not ashamed. He's my son and I love him. And he hasn't done too bad either. His birthday was two weeks ago, and he received a beautiful 30,000 square foot mansion, a brand new jet and a top of the line Mercedes from his three boyfriends.'

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Friday, April 03, 2009

He's tired

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

that we had 3 visitors at our little 6:30am meeting yesterday; one celebrating 1 month sober and another celebrating 3 months

for the honor of hearing a fifth step from one of my sponsee's yesterday -- this is always a special time for me. Interestingly enough, I'm supposed to hear another one today.

that I do my best NOT to be an enabler; there's always more to experience and learn about this subject

that I have every intention of remaining sober this weekend. I'll let you know how that works out on Monday.

The way to love anything is to realize that it might be lost.
-G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, April 02, 2009

on the fence

todAAy i AAM grAAteful & thAAnkful

that I have fewer expectations as I continue into my sobriety, albeit with a few exceptions

for the 20 year-old woman who told her story of unmanagebility yesterday

that I have several gardens to maintain, but haven't planted a tree (yet)

that my partner and I usually find ways to make up quickly after an argument -- it's almost always my responsibility to initiate making up because it's almost always my faulty thinking that starts a negative discussion. Without my recovery program, I'd be single.

If you want to be happy for a year, plant a garden; If you want to be happy for life, plant a tree.
-English Proverb

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Believe it or not

todAAy i AAm grAAteful & thAAnkful

to hear someone say ...
Searching for God is like a fish searching for water

that I wuz gonna write something very inappropriate here today (being April Fool's Day) but decided that this is not the forum for that. Boyz and Girlz, this is NEW behavior for me.

You are younger today than you ever will be again. Make use of it for the sake of tomorrow.
~~ unknown