How to Read A Book

ent_readwalk_0605How do I read a book? From the beginning. One page at a time. While it goes fun, I don’t care for how many pages are left to go through. Then that may change, and I start looking at page numbers and count how many days it may take me to finish the book. Still, though, no matter how much I’m planning to read it, I don’t get to completing it unless I go one page at a time. If I cheat and skip parts, I miss something and then I find myself confused about things not making sense.

How do you walk a road toward a location? Not drive, or ride a bike, – walk? Hopefully, the way I do it. That is, one step at a time, putting one foot in front of the other. Watching your step is also highly recommended. I don’t remember if I was told how to read the book the right way, but I sure was told how to walk. It works well just the way I was told. I usually keep up a good stature and good pace, and hey, I get where I need to, even if the weather conditions aren’t as favorable as I may have wanted.

How do I live sober? Not how you live sober, or how you should live sober. That is none of my business. I have some ideas to share, though. Nothing crazy. It works just the same way as with reading a book and walking down the road. It even can be tightly related to those two. It is a one step at a time kind of a thing. Sometimes it is a foot, sometimes a couple inches. Sometimes it is a day, but in the beginning it is more of an hour. One in front of the other. When I went one step without booze a day it was easier to focus without too many thoughts, fears, and doubts attached. One step at a time, guarded by a “thank you” at wake-up time, and the other at bedtime. That’s what AA taught me. They taught me well. It works. Step by step progress may not seem like a good ride, but it is, because there are so many examples and metaphors I can find to put “one step at a time” path of living in front of you. That’s right, path of living, because everything that is to stand strong and last works that way.


the image was copied from http://entertainment.time.com/2012/06/06/a-book-lovers-guide-to-reading-and-walking-at-the-same-time/ modified by me for the sake of Saturday morning goofballingness. thank you.

S0me sc@ry sh*t

rabbitBroken glass shards flew around, sound ripping the ears, while the splintered wood pieces protruded from the window frame, promising a bad time. His face was red, and eyes were wild. He shook his fists toward the person behind the window. He was not who he was hours ago, but that happened to him often. Getting violent came from getting drunk on alcohol and that came from making a choice, but what an ill choice it was… because that’s what happened each time he drank – denial, anger, resistance, property damage and injuries.

That image is from a real life story. I’m sure many can see something familiar in it, and surely there are many other different stories relating to humans drinking in excess. There are people out there too who may not know what excess is. They just drink and a lot, and then shit happens. Some see that and stop drinking. Others don’t. I didn’t. Years after stopping drinking alcohol for good I still had many instances of facing what drinking alcohol does to people, coming face to face with these issues, mostly through work.

OK, that’s what happens to humans when they drink a lot. How about drinking effects on rabbits? Anthropomorphized rabbits? Roger Rabbit?!

Roger Rabbit drunk is an ugly thing to witness. Entertaining on the screen, but still ugly. The instantaneous reaction may be exaggerated in the reality of the motion picture, but the display of massive character change may be complete. Jackyl and Hyde effect is an old example, but it still works great to theorize how bad things can go and what can people (rabbits) do about that.

Why am I writing about it? Maybe because some of us need to remember not to drink, and human example, even their own, doesn’t work anymore. Maybe even their own examples are too ugly. So, think about Roger Rabbit having a drink in the bar and how ballistic he (it?) goes. It is not really a rabbit, you know? It is a caricature on us, humans. Let’s try to keep that image in our heads when time comes for responsible decisions 😊

the image was copied from https://www.cinemablend.com/new/Who-Framed-Roger-Rabbit-Gets-Digital-Restoration-25th-Anniversary-Screening-36149.html thanks.

What We Do They Do Not Know

No, we are not in a cult. No, it’s not a secret – our books are sold in the open and there is no password to get into a meeting. Yet there is a difference between us and them. Us, problem drinkers and them, non-drinkers and non-problem drinkers.

Nothing against them. In fact, good for them, in a way. They don’t know the problem we have. Constant temptations. Perpetually lost wars with mind and spirit. Repetitive hangovers, loss of relationship, job, home, self-esteem – and all of that because of compulsive alcohol drinking. They don’t know what the hell that is – I’m happy for them.

However, there is something else they may not know. It’s our coming to our senses and recovery through seeking and obtaining spiritual liberation. They may be in church or in pagan temple, and if so, again, good for them for having that support in their lives. Still, the way many of us, the problem drinkers, came to having support in our fellowship is one of a kind, to be shared by few.

Still, there are things that we do they don’t know, don’t understand, and sometimes don’t want to understand. I hear it from time to time that families and friends of recovered alcoholics don’t understand them anymore. It’s too weird to them. It’s too hard to accept that the change is finally happening to their loved ones, and yet with the lack of drinking they become someone else. Some families and friends don’t seem to be OK with accepting it. “To Wives” chapter was addressed to them. I hope they read it, despite the title that may smell of exclusion.

Things we do and we know are of benefit to us, whether we are understood by those outside our circle or not. Still though, I’m sure Twelve Steps fellowships will welcome them all if they come to realization one day that they have problem with substance abuse similar to ours.

Neutral Affirmation

I am given a wordblood

And I say my first name

And I call myself an alcoholic

After which I speak some more

About myself.

Whether I am in recovery

Or not,

Maybe still struggling through trenches

Of “human versus disease” war,

It is not a negative word.

It is not (or at least shouldn’t be)

Said with self-loathing,

Or sadness,

Or uttered bitterly to point a finger

At someone else to blame for my faults.

It is a neutral affirmation of reality.

Some folks are born with pale skin, not dark

Some others are born female, not male.

I was born pale skinned male,

With birth-attached ill disease

Streaming through my blood,

A condition that plagued me for years

Until its essence was explained to me

And I saw it for what it was,

Not an illusion that I kept alive all that time.

Alcoholic is not a derogatory word that shames.

Neither it is a happy word.

It is a diagnosis that doesn’t discriminate.

It is part of my nature,

That I know now,

And with that I know who I am,

And things I can and no longer can do

If I want to live freely in mind and spirit.


the image was copied from https://www.newscientist.com/article/2191282-weve-discovered-a-new-type-of-blood-vessel-in-our-bones/ thank you

Saved by the Wall

wall2Thanks to Brian for the wall inspiration.

In the grey mist nothing was to be seen, or so it appeared. I ran fast, making jumps here and there. I yelled loudly, they were curses and shouts of joy. Growls were loud to the point that as they left my mouth, my throat hurt. Yet still I did it, because I wanted to express all of my anguish and joy of liberation which I thought I was experiencing. And when I was just about to make it out of the woods, I ran into something. I should’ve known, of course, what it was – I ran into it so many times before. Still somehow, I managed to forget each time. So much good time, so much forgotten in the midst of it. I hated the pain that pierced my head, I hated forgetting, but oh how I hated remembering! It would always appear just when I started to have a real good time. I looked at the wall that mounted above me, and I recalled more and more of the past instances. Resentments, pain, need for the cure, instantaneous relief, blinding intoxication, freedom at the tip of my tongue and all over my brain, and then – hitting the wall and all the self-loathing that came along with it…

No, that is not the wall to symbolize the isolation as in the great Pink Floyd album/movie, although in me past of self-destruction that certainly would come over for a visit and stay for a long time if I’d allow it… and I did.

Each time my mind wanted to party, even if it was a celebration of the day just for me, myself, and I, my body would perform all the necessary rituals, no matter how tired it may have been minutes prior. I’d run to the store to get booze so fast I’d beat an Olympic champion. And then the chug-chug-chug must-do and I was back in business of fun. Colors came back, and the reality would retreat. And since I could never stop if I started, I’d let party keep going. More beating Olympic champions would follow, and oh dear, how bad my stomach was ravaged, while my mind danced not realizing it was kept being raped!

And then would come that time when my spirit would be running in the grey mist of not seeing too clearly anymore and then BAM! I’d hit the wall. I’d be lying there wonder what the hell happened. Most of the time that would happen in the morning after. What a crash! Getting on with the day in “the morning after” was like a world war! And I could never learn from that lesson of which I had thousands.

Lessons! Oh, how well I tried to ignore those! I kept trying to bash my head through the wall. Just kept doing the same thing. Then I decided it would be smart to try and walk around the wall. My mind was looking for the loopholes in the Creation that would allow me out-smart my body. Mostly those attempts were based on the advises from other drinkers. Listening to those, I was rejoiced. The illusion that the grass is greener somewhere out there where we aren’t at yet didn’t want to die. I believed I could still find the way to be happy on my own terms, doing what I wanted, being reckless if they just let me, or dream all day long if life allowed it.

And yet I kept hitting the wall, only these times instead of being blinded by pain and growling helplessly, I’d be wondering aloud “Hey, I ate this time!” or “I was drinking water too!” or “Well, I wasn’t mixing anything!” And no, those attempts to calm down hangovers didn’t work for me. My body simply didn’t want to have anything to do with alcoholic intoxication beyond certain point. Problem was, I couldn’t stop drinking at any point except for brain shut down, or I’d be out of money, or the liquor store was closed.

The wall was a testimony to my being unteachable and lost in denial. Yet at the same time, all these times I failed to see that the wall was also the extremely useful limitation created for the sake of my self-preservation, my body trying to teach me a vital lesson. It was to signify my boundary I believed I wanted to and could cross, but my body and mind won’t allow me to. It worked just as the blackout was not a curse, but just my body shutting down on me so I wouldn’t kill myself with all the truly lethal massive dosage of ethyl spirits.

It is easier to see now that I was spending crazy amounts of money and time to pretty much kill myself each time over the last several years of my drinking “career”, while I was thinking I was having a good time, diving headlong into the illusion of running away from reality for a little while. The wall of my body and mind reactions saved me, and yet I felt I was weak and needed to strengthen it by building a seasoned drinker’s attitude and gut. Silly, but sad.

And that just how my mind and body reacted in the real time. The way my mind was screwed by my own hands during those years is sometimes hard to look back at, so crazy those thoughts and ideations were. I still say in the AA meetings that this recovery fellowship literally was the best thing that ever happened to me. No lie about that. I’ve learned about my limits. I’ve learned how not to run away from life, and I’m still better at it these days then in the past. I became better with living in my skin and accepting responsibilities. And I no longer go too crazy to kill myself and deny it.

Thank you for fourteen years of sobriety!


the image was copied from https://www.reddit.com/r/starcitizen/comments/b3xhua/found_it_the_wall/ thanks.

drink u pretty

Godwin Austen (K2) - 8611 mHe sang

He couldn’t drink the girl pretty

She really wasn’t it, I guess.

I tried to drink her pretty,

And I failed too.

Her name was Life,

Her last name was On-its-terms.

Must be French.

I was stubborn though.

I tried, and I tried, and I tried.

She wasn’t. Stubborn, I mean.

She just was.

She sat there like a rock

And smiled sadly,

Probably hoping I’d get it,

But it took me a while:

Years of anger,

Brain cells wasted in millions,

And hope in fellow men – in shovels,

Only it wasn’t their fault.

False hopes and unrealistic expectations did it.

I cared for things that wasn’t there,

Although all that time I had people

Telling the truth to my face,

Truth I didn’t like.

I always thought Plan B would work,

But I got to letter Z and I was still profoundly fucked.

Now I look at the sky with eyes sober

As the morning dew,

(unless the air got drunk on a whim)

And say “thank you” a lot.

I still try,

You know, coffee it pretty.

But I think it’s a different kick –

No one gets hurt,

And the bills get paid.

She still sits there like a rock,

But I know her smile is happier now.


the front image was copied from https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/03/k2-last-problem-of-the-himalayas/554618/. thanks.

Smoking Open Lights

20190223_145531 9I’ve just realized that I’ve made it for ten years without smoking tobacco or any other substance this past month. I used to count them, but this year it somehow crept up on my unexpectedly.

I most likely wouldn’t be able to come to not smoking at all if thirteen years and nine months ago I didn’t make a conscious decision to quit… drinking. Weird? No anymore, not to me anyway.

I came to the recovery fellowship and I’ve learned plenty of skills. As the result, I’ve quit drinking which would not work if I didn’t acquire a certain program of thinking and being, a life style that pushed for a healthier life in spirit, body, and mind. Thanks to that, I managed to see clearer some other unhealthy things that I did in my life, behaviors that didn’t help, such as isolating and judging others. A couple years after, “doing” the Steps, I came to the realization that I could quit smoking cigarettes with the help of the Steps wisdom since nothing else worked. This worked out successfully, as some other things. Some didn’t, but that’s life. I keep trying and among other things, I keep saying “thank you” when things work out, whether it is small or large.

“Thank you” is something so easily said, as well as “sorry” or “how are you”, and I think often we don’t really think about it, as we say it to others, or when they say it to us. I try to think about it lately, though. There are lots of things to be grateful for, even if life is not working the way I would prefer it did.

In the Fellowship I was taught to be grateful for every day. It worked when I tried it in my morning prayer. Yet I still resisted being grateful throughout the day. I was happy for sobriety yet I often resented people around me. My first couple years in sobriety were of solid sobriety but at times I felt miserable, because… well, I don’t really know why, but I think I was not there spiritually as much as I could have been. What I decided I’d start doing is saying thank you to people who did the jobs that I knew I would never do successfully. They did their service and I paid for it and I’d say thank you. Within less than ten days my outlook on life started changing for the better.

Soon after that I started working at a homeless shelter. There I met people who were angry about everything, dissatisfied with anything, and it used to distress me, but with time I learned to think they were not having a good day lifetime long. There were also people who woke up and said thank you to anything, to every little thing others did for them. I felt connected to these people, and years later I wrote a novella about that spirit of open-mindedness and gratitude for life.

I don’t think I’d be able to come this far in life and doing reasonably well if I didn’t push myself out of the dark room and allowed myself to have a different life. I used to isolate so much I’ve become a professional isolationist and procrastinator with a diploma hanging on the wall. Even in an active community of recovery with so many things happening, with so much positivity and vigor one can still live a stagnant life. I could have easily slipped through the cracks in these rooms if it wasn’t for the man named Ted. He not only welcomed me into recovery, he also gave me a good kick in the butt to live my recovery actively, and he did it with a cheer and I appreciated that. Years later our paths separated due to disagreements which is still upsetting to me, but I hope he is doing good and maybe one day we will be talking again.

Ted had a vibe full of life, and that vibe infected me, wanting more of life than just living sober. It brought forth the fruits of labor that was sober living, joyful life of recovery that keeps going on, like a wheel turning. There are many people in rooms of sobriety that I’ve met over the years. I am grateful to them all and I hope many others that are in need of help will be able to open their spirits to gratitude and trust to the world wide fellowship of AA and as the result will heal and expand their lives for much better than they ever knew was possible.


instead of a diploma, enjoy the front image that was taken by me. the punctuation (or the lack there of) game made me capture the sign and then inspired me to write this. so, thank you to whoever designed the sign ignoring the (un)holy laws of English punctuation and those who put the sign up.