December 2nd, 2019 Vol. One No.26
What is a GSR anyhow ?
As it states in the AA Service Manual, “the communication process begins with the group.” So, Step Two Men’s Group, has a General Service Representative and that Representative carries the group conscience to a District meeting. In our case that would be District 24, comprised of groups in the downtown area of Sacramento. District 24 is one of twenty-eight districts contained within Area 07, the California Northern Interior Area (CNIA). Out of our area, Area 07, and each AA area throughout the United States and Canada, a Delegate is chosen to travel each year to the General Service Conference in New York, carrying with him/her the group conscience of all the groups within their areas.
A. A. G R O U P S
G R O U P G S Rs
D I S T R I C T S
DELEGATES TO THE
The General Service Representative links a group with the whole of AA. How? By standing the Triangle on its head.
Simple enough! The point being, all the structure of AA we have come to value: the literature, the Hospitals and Institutions meetings, the Public Information with Cooperating Professionals outreach, literature, language translations, problems concerning anonymity, singleness of purpose, money, being forever non-professional—all of these services and discussions originate from within the groups. I am grateful that Step Two Men’s Group chooses to include our group conscience in this General Service process. By so doing, each of us can humbly say we contribute our fair share in carrying the message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
Contributed by George T.
Tis the season…
Time to carry the message to other alcoholics.
But what message?
And I found this out the hard way … sometimes the “message” does not want to hear it. Emphatically, does not want to hear it.
I had this as a personal experience recently.
I have a friend.
Hold your comments please.
For the first five years I have known this person, she told me she rarely drank and it never seemed like she did. I never saw her have a drink in front of me, and there were several occasions when having one would be seem appropriate and easy.
Then about five months ago, I saw her have a drink. And then she had another.
About two months ago, she called me and I estimated she had left Earth within the previous last hour or so, she was blasted. It was amusing, in a way. She was funny.
A week went by, and I met her for dinner. She seems tipsy, and has two glasses of wine with dinner. I cannot explain exactly my feelings but every red flag I have went up. I told her that it was not comfortable, for me, to hang out with someone who was inebriated and while I do not object to her desire to get drunk, I don’t want to witness to it. Something along those lines.
Then came a last straw. Another phone call. The conversation was all about how her life was in turmoil and gone to hell … and I broached the “Question”.
Do you think you might have a problem with alcohol? I explained how we had met. How we had shared a lot of personal history. How that I wrestled with alcohol for 30 years and one of my worst relapses happened right around her age. And, after thinking about it, I wasn’t sure she was supposed to be drinking. In other words, she seemed more like someone going through a relapse than installing the disease.
The reaction has not been good. I don’t know what I was thinking. It just came out when I said it. Other things got said, like the obligatory “I haven’t had a drink in a week, because I wanted to see if you were right. “ You can tell she has had a drink or two an hour or so ago.
Other things got said. She ain’t calling anymore. I go to message. I saw her at Polanco’s the other night and she bolted right away without saying hello. Seems like in just a week and a half, things are very uncomfortable between us.
I questioned myself. Was I taking her inventory? Well, of course I was. But tell me how you wouldn’t be?
And honestly, just between us friends I don’t feel the urge to save her. I am wary of getting too involved in trying to help her for fear of being dragged back into that world. See Days of Wine and Roses, Act Three.
Also, this has served as a reminder as to how miserable I must have been to be around. The hell I must have put my family through.
So be prepared. Or at least cognizant that trying to carry the message, to someone we have deemed – needs the message – can have consequences. I wonder if I am strong enough to carry the message to her, without being drawn into it. This woman is not unattractive, even drunk. So, I think you should think about that too.
To the fellows I have talked about parts of this before in the Room, I apologize for being repetitive. To the rest of you expecting something humorous, sorry, this month I just didn’t have any funny in me.
It just ain’t funny at all.
Contributed by John M.
Year End Charitable Contribution Suggestion:
We’re not the only Step group in town!
St. Francis Parish continues to provide the home for our Step 2 Men’s Group, and as a group we are able to provide annual financial contributions to the parish because we always (unanimously) agree to at our business meeting. St. Francis Parish volunteers, through it’s Step Ministry, also provide shelter, comfort, and breakfast for homeless people every night. We walk past the cots on our way to the bathroom. You can learn more about this by visiting the St. Francis Step Ministry website: https://www.stfrancisparish.com/step_ministry.htm
AA has helped us to have good lives, to the point that some of us now have extra money in our pockets that the tax man will get if we don’t use it wisely in charitable contributions. And some of us just want to go to heaven and this could help.
If you are inspired to contribute money that will go directly to the Step Ministry, write a check to St. Francis Step Ministry and give it to a meeting secretary. Cash works well also. Dan Mc.will pass our contributions on to the right place. The volunteers who run this program do great work and they could use our help.
Contributed by Tom W.
GRANT MILLER AWARD WINNER Shares AA birthday with you know who!
Revealed in this month’s issue, our own Tom W. shares a birthday (if he makes it!) with a very well known celestial celebrity. Tom W. enjoys 11 years of a great life, great service to our group and great sobriety on December 25th! Merry Birthday Tom!
THE LITERARY CORNER: ALCOHOL IN LITERATURE
“I pray you, do not fall in love with me,
For I am falser than vows made in wine.”
“My own experience has been that the tools I need for my trade are paper, tobacco, food, and a little whiskey.”
“And do you really know what Vodka is like? Jesus! It’s just straight alcohol, and they drink it by the tumbler full. Really, some scientists should investigate how it is possible for man to drink such stuff in such huge quantities.”
Beer’s intellectual. What a shame so many idiots drink it.
From an Idea by George T.
OUR TRUSTED SERVANTS Remain:
This month we’re grateful for our Secretaries! The current ‘Step 2 Men’s Group’ meeting schedule is Monday through Friday at 11:30 AM. The Thursday meeting is a ‘Book/Step Study’ format. Each of the M-F gatherings are one hour.
Monday: Tim C.
Tuesday: Dick M.
Wednesday: John M.
Thursday: George T.
Friday: Dan Mc.
Group GS, Tom W. says “Many members find performing ‘Secretaryship’ a rewarding experience.” “They believe it fills a ‘being of service’ need and helps them get to know other group members better”. Of course…there’s also something to be said for being ‘in control’! But that’s not a direct quote from the GS.
If being a Group Secretary sounds appealing…please contact GS Tom W. or Treasurer Dan Mc. soon.
‘First Wednesday’ December 3rd…
John M. reviews the 12th Step on December 3rdh (First Wednesday). “Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, we tried to carry to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.” Tried…ok I can try…nope…too hard…I’m done!
John reviews the step corresponding to the number of that month on each first Wednesday. It’s a rewarding meeting with John outlining each step and how he was challenged by it. Look for his monthly contribution in this edition!
THURSDAY ‘Book & Step Study’ w/ George T!
George T. takes us through the Twelve Steps and Big Book portions to start the meeting every Thursday. Each missive is packed with fine prose, fascinating insights and challenging reading. Following the read (about 20 minutes)…the floor is open to everyone’s thoughts on how they may have been influenced or impacted by that writing. It’s really fun to be a part of and members are enjoying it.
Get on in here and show George support and contribute something to the newcomer. Every Thursday at 11:30.
December Birthdays …IF They Make It!
Tim K. December 1st…Tim celebrates 2 years!
James I. December 15th…James celebrates 11 years!
Tom W. December 25th…Tom celebrates 11 years!
Keith D. December 29th…Keith celebrates 7 years!
If your birthday has been missed….PLEASE ‘reply’ by email now with:
- Your First Name w/ Last initial
- Your “AA’ Birthday (ex.8/1/18)
We really want to celebrate your AA anniversary because your birthday made ours possible!
Thanks everybody and apologies to you if you were missed or incorrectly noted.
Alcoholics Anonymous ‘Daily Reflection…
Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, . . .
— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 106
As I continued to go to meetings and work the Steps, something began to happen to me. I felt confused because I wasn’t sure what it was that I was feeling, and then I realized I was experiencing serenity. It was a good feeling, but where had it come from? Then I realized it had come “. . . as the result of these steps.” The program may not always be easy to practice, but I had to acknowledge that my serenity had come to me after working the Steps. As I work the Steps in everything I do, practicing these principles in all my affairs, now I find that I am awake to God, to others, and to myself. The spiritual awakening I have enjoyed as the result of working the Steps is the awareness that I am no longer alone.
From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.
A newcomer asks his sponsor says the Big Book says about sex. The sponsor gets the numbers mixed up, and instead of referring the newcomer to page 69, directs him to page 96, where he reads, “Do not be discouraged if your prospect does not respond at once. Search out another alcoholic and try again. You are sure to find someone desperate enough to accept with eagerness what you offer!” Ed L. Coos Bay, OR. August 2005
Sign Seen in a Bar: “Those drinking to forget please pay in advance.” How come if alcohol kills millions of brain cells, it never killed the one that made me want to drink? Tom K. Omaha, NB. November 1995
You know it’s time to sober up when: Those fluttering things that keep scaring you are your hands! John G. Sacramento, CA. June, 1980.
A man staggers into a store, approaches the counter, and says to the clerk, “I’d like a half-pound each of ham and cheese, and half dozen oranges.” The clerk replies, “You must be the town drunk, huh?” The man, taken aback, replies, “How did you know that?” The clerk looks at him carefully and says, “This is a hardware store!’ Gerry D. West Chester, PA September 2004
“The Joke Box” features narratives, anecdotes and jokes from the AA publication “A Rabbit Walks Into a Bar”. Available at the AA Central Office, it contains the best material from the historic AA Grapevine. You can learn more at aagrapevine.org. Thanks to Anthony S. for picking up a copy and suggesting it!
Urgent need for My First Meeting !
I need twelve volunteers to write anything from one sentence to one paragraph about the thing you remember most from YOUR first meeting. We can’t do it without YOU…We need you. Reply back today please.
This month, we pull the “guilt card”. How’s it working?
Memory Lane…Remember the FUN We Had?
Came To Believe: To become conscious again.
“Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.”
We’d never presume that the 12 Steps are not clear. Nor would we imply that they need ‘improvement’. However…for purposes of assisting to keep the meeting pointed in an important direction each day, the ‘Step 2 Men’s Group statement is read as follows:
Step 2 Men’s Group is founded on the belief that spirituality is essential to our sobriety. Our group is non-religious, but we do not oppose anyone’s religious beliefs. We believe that respect for others and their beliefs are essential to our spiritual development. Accordingly we ask that avoid criticism of others or of their religion or lack of religion, their race, ethnicity, national origin, age, sexual orientation, physical appearance, trade or profession, length of sobriety, or personal beliefs. Our goal is to further our spirituality, our sobriety and our personal development, not to confront or belittle others. Always remember to be kind to others.
SPECIAL THANKS DEPT:
Thanks John M. for ‘Tis the Season’’. Thank you George T. for ‘What Is a GSR Anyhow?’ Thanks to Tom W. for thoughts on the St. Francis ‘Step Ministry’. Thanks to Anthony S. for the ‘Joke Box’. We’re still waiting for YOU gentle reader…Why YOU don’t contribute a short “something?” Any length, most any AA related topic. Reply now and it will get included next month!