December 31st, 2019 ~ January 1st, 2020 Vol. One No.27
The ‘GSR’ says…
GENERAL SERVICE REPORT FOR DECEMBER 2019:
I attended District 24 General Service Meeting Tuesday, Dec. 11th at the Community Room in the Clunie Center. If anyone is ever interested in attending the meeting, it’s always on the Second Tuesday of the month at the same time, 6:00 pm, and location, Clunie Center. Come see how AA policy sausage is made!
There were a whopping 14 people who attended the meeting this month; perhaps because it was a potluck? Sort of like our Business Meeting—offer food and it entices folks to attend. Probably I should remember that when it comes time for my funeral?
Most of the meeting was spent saying good-bye and thank you for your service to the GSRs and district officers who have rotated out of what is known as Panel 68. Beginning in January all the new GSRs and officers, actually all the General Service positions throughout AA commence a two-year period of service, marking the commencement of Panel 70. Your humble Step Two Men’s Group GSR was named the Panel 70 Recording Secretary for District 24.
It was also noted that at the Area Assembly held in Lindsay, California this past month, California Northern Interior Area ( CNIA) 07 voted to send the proposal from the Chico Group (described in our November edition), requesting a change to some of the language describing the Sixth Step in the Twelve by Twelve, to the General Service Office Trustees in New York for consideration. What this means is that maybe-maybe-maybe, but not for sure, the request for consideration might be added to the agenda for the upcoming General Service Conference in June 2020. Stay tuned!
Besides that, all in attendance who will be serving the next two years were enthusiastic and ready to rock! There will be a Winter Assembly held in Sacramento Jan18-19, 2020. More details of time and locations to follow, but it would be a good opportunity for anyone who has never attended an AA conference to drop in for a little taste on any of those days. Your humble GSR is planning on attending each day and would love to fellowship with some of my Step Two Men’s Group friends during that time. Until then: Happy Holidays! Merry Christmas! Happy New Year! God Bless AA and God Bless Step Two Men’s Group—each and every one of you-ze lugs!
Contributed by George T.
Just One Thing:
Ahh, that time of year again… time of us merry men, and good cheer and good will towards our brothers and sisters…Except those couple of folk, I still can’t stand.
I was thinking about the New Year. For some reason Ivan Drago and Rocky IV came to mind… I dunno, my mind races sometimes.
Most people remember Rocky IV – if you don’t here is the synopsis… Surprising and unlikely heavy weight champion, Rocky Balboa, the pride of resurging Philadelphia, goes to Russia in the midst of the cold war to fight chemically altered Ivan Drago, a man the pesky Russians have turned into an unbeatable droid. He is so bad ass, he sends Apollo Creed permanently to Mount Olympus. And Rocky decides to take vengeance in Moscow, under terms dictated by said pesky Russians. He doesn’t have a chance.
Except he is Rocky.
He trains in the Siberian snow, carrying around six foot across 500 lbs. logs, gets his Joe Weider manual out, gives up gluten and processed sugar and gets to Moscow, a sleek, mean, American made fighting mule.
Former Sacramentan, Stu Nathan, takes us to ring side for 14 rounds of brutality. Rocky is getting killed, Rocky is coming back, Rocky somehow wins. And tries to get to the point of my story with a famous line… I have to paraphrase because I do not remember it exactly.
Ok, so Rocky wins, grabs Stu’s ring side microphone, and addresses the now adoring, but still blatant Commies, “You know, when I was wrestling Siberian Elk to get ready for this fight” Rocky says, “ I got to thinking, Here we are, all hating each other. But as the fight wore on, I felt your feelings might be changing. Like, I can feel you digging my Nikes. And if I can change, maybe you can change………WE CAN ALL CHANGE”.
So moved is the crowd that even Mikhail Gorbachev, gives a standing O. Ludmilla, played by Brigette Nielson, even stands, and later marries Rocky. A move that wiped the smile right off the Drago camp, and those holding the Drago betting slips. And Russia changed alright, going to government by organized crime… Wait, I can’t take their inventory.
Ok, first the bad news. I cannot change that I am an alcoholic. I tried for about 25 years before I committed to AA and well, I am going to be one, now and forever.
BUT…I was thinking there were a few things I could change.
I could say, I am going to read one of the AA approved books once a month. I could. I could say it. But I think I am going to say, I am going to read one from these two. “Living Sober” or “Drop the Rock”. I have thumbed through them.
I am going to do one more service job this year. I don’t know yet what. Reluctantly I will take suggestions but be prepared that I may enthusiastically turn you down.
And I am going to attend one more meeting a month. Simple stuff.
You might say, “Well, that ain’t much”. And you are right …It’s not. But it is more than last year. And it’s a change from last year. See how I wrapped that altogether.
And here is a challenge…Surpass me. Hurt my feelings by doing something monumental. I won’t mind.
Contributed by John M.
Staying Sober New Year’s Eve…
Special thanks to our own George T . for including these 12 ‘AA Approved’ tips to a sober & joyous holiday season:
1) Line up extra AA activities for the holiday season. Take newcomers to meetings…answer phones at central office. Speak or visit the ‘alcoholic ward’ at a hospital (a little dated).
2) Be host to AA friends, especially newcomers. If you don’t have a place where you can throw a formal party, take one person to a diner and spring for coffee (I’m in!).
3) Keep your AA telephone list with you all the time. If a drinking urge or panic comes-postpone everything else until you’ve called an ‘AA’.
4) Find out about the special holiday parties, meetings, or other celebrations given by groups in your area and go…think ‘Alka-Thon!
5) Skip any drinking occasion you are nervous about. Remember how clever you were in drinking excuses? Put that skill to good use…No party is worth risking your life!
6) If you have to go to a drinking party and you can’t take an ‘AA’ with you…Keep some candy handy!
7) Don’t think you have to stay late. Plan in advance an important commitment you have to keep and leave!
8) Worship in your own way…’nough said!
9) Don’t sit around brooding (like I do!)…Catch up on those books, museums, walks, emails or letters you’ve been meaning to do!
10) Don’t start now getting worked up about those holiday temptations. Remember-One Day at a Time!
11) Enjoy the true beauty of holiday love and joy. Maybe you cannot give material gifts…but this year…you can give you!
12) “Having had a…” No need to spell out the Twelve Step here…since you already know it.
Thanks again to George T. A very ‘Happy New Year’ to all and a reminder that ‘Step 2 Mens’ meeting will continue M-F @ 11:30 right through the holidays and New Years Day!
Contributed by George T.
THE LITERARY CORNER: ALCOHOL IN LITERATURE
“Pouring out liquor is like burning books.” ―William Faulkner
“I like to have a martini, two at the very most. After three I’m under the table, after four I’m under my host.” ―Dorothy Parker
“First you take a drink, then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes you.” ―F. Scott Fitzgerald
“I’m an occasional drinker, the kind of guy who goes out for a beer and wakes up in Singapore with a full beard.” ―Raymond Chandler
“I don’t think I’ve ever drunk champagne before breakfast before. With breakfast on several occasions, but never before before.” ―Truman Capote, Breakfast at Tiffany’s
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.
Want to add your name to the “Back-up-Help-Substitute Secretary List”? Just contact Group GS, Tom W., Treasurer Dan Mc. or any of the Monday through Friday Secretaries and let them know!
John M. reviews the 1st Step on January 1st (First Wednesday). “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol-that our lives had become unmanageable.” I’m managing quite well, thank you very much! Can you bail me out of jail?
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.
January Birthdays …IF They Make It!
Ken B. January 2nd…Ken celebrates 16 years!
Anthony S. January 3rd…Anthony celebrates 36 years!
Willie R. January 5th…Willie celebrates 5 years!
John O. January 18th…John celebrates 2 years!
Fred C. January 25th…Fred celebrates 4 years!
If your birthday has been missed….PLEASE fill out this form.
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…
The idea of “twenty-four-hour living” applies primarily to the emotional life of the individual. Emotionally speaking, we must not live in yesterday, nor in tomorrow.
— AS BILL SEES IT, p. 284
A New Year: 12 months, 52 weeks, 365 days, 8,760 hours, 525,600 minutes — a time to consider directions, goals, and actions. I must make some plans to live a normal life, but also I must live emotionally within a twenty-four-hour frame, for if I do, I don’t have to make New Year’s resolutions! I can make every day a New Year’s day! I can decide, “Today I will do this . . . Today I will do that.” Each day I can measure my life by trying to do a little better, by deciding to follow God’s will and by making an effort to put the principles of our A.A. program into action.
From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.
“I AM A MIRACLE”
The central fact of our lives today is the absolute certainty that our Creator has entered into our hearts and lives in a way which is indeed miraculous. He has commenced to accomplish those things for us which we could never do by ourselves.
— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 25
This truly is a fact in my life today, and a real miracle. I always believed in God, but could never put that belief meaningfully into my life. Today, because of Alcoholics Anonymous, I now trust and rely on God, as I understand Him; I am sober today because of that! Learning to trust and rely on God was something I could never have done alone. I now believe in miracles because I am one!
From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.
Overheard in a courtroom: Judge: “What did you do to keep yourself sober during that time?’ Defendant: “I went to Kansas.” Judge: “Did that work?” Defendant: “Yeah…there were warrants out for me there!”
Fred O. Hoquiam, WA. July 2000
I’m NOT powerless over alcohol…I just can’t get up!
Nelson H. Tulsa OK. June 2004
“Bartender!” “What now?” “Do lemons have feet?” “NO… LEMONS DO NOT HAVE FEET.” “Oh God.” “What?” “I just squeezed your canary into my gin & tonic!”
Brian C. Blythe, CA. September 1997
Said on January 4th: “I may be a little late Honey.” “Charlie’s in town and wants me to have a New Year’s Eve drink with him.”
Jerry R. Spokane, WA. January 1998
I just loved the idea of joining Alcoholics Anonymous. I thought the “Alcoholics” part meant they drank, and the “Anonymous” part meant that they didn’t tell anyone about it!
C.K Montello, WI.
“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?
“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.
EXTRA SPECIAL THANKS DEPT:
My thank you to our John M. John has been such a great contributor all year. Love, or hate, his writing…you can’t argue that he doesn’t put his heart and soul into it. Each of his monthly stories take a lot of time, thought and energy. He always draws me inside and fires my imagination. Thank you John for your hard work. Thank you George T. for ‘The GSR Says’. George too has been a regular contributor all year. Good work George T. 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!
On a serious tone…the sender’s email address [email protected] has been created specifically for this newsletter. The ‘inbox’ may not be reviewed often. Every effort will be made to NOT share your email address with anyone w/o express written permission from you. You may ‘opt out’ at any time from this newsletter by simple reply…” Stop sending me this junk”! Please suggest columns, advice…ideas. Your comments are always welcome.