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RoxTitle

People see my MS Paint skills and get hella jealous. #Bollocks

If you’ve found this page, that means you are here.  You can see all my posts in the handy dandy side bar to your right.  Easily navigate my dark and disorderly views on everything from the discovery of America, feminism, dead atheists;  And don’t forget my Totally Freakishly Fun Fashion Tips (TF3T baby!) which I also like to call The Zero Dollar Couture for the Cheap and the Chic (ZDC3 baby!).

Or, if you’re living dangerously, check out the neatly organized pages listed below my page title.  There, you can go directly to all my posts in the Social Commentary section.

But if you hate Social Commentary, just read the Under Fifty and Thrifty section (UFT baby!)  Ok, it’s actually called Freakishly Cheap Fashion Tips which pretty much covers every word combination I could think of without sounding like a total hipster yuppie dingbat.

For those of you who skipped ahead to this last part, I have a special treat for you: A reiterated list with bullet points!  See, it pays to be lazy and skim stuff, right?

  • Social Commentary– ALL my recent POSTS
  • Freakishly Cheap Fashion Tips- ADVICE for the cheap and the chic
  • Just #Bollocks Things- The Complete History of Bollocks (coming soon!)
  • Contact Me- Do I really have to explain this one?

6 comments

  1. You are uncharacteristically insightful and incisive. I am curious about how you came to have such a free thinking and insightful mind.

    I respect your ‘radical’ positions.

    But I am an old man.

    That used to read to me as “ok, here come the excuses…” But hear me out.

    In my mid 20’s I dragged myself into AA terrified of dying at the hands of a series of internally interconnected problems whose most flagrant outcropping was alcoholism and addiction. Old timers took me under their wing and taught me old school, by the book AA. Long story short I have struggled long and hard to become a free thinker and an out, open and strong advocate for atheism within AA.

    But it is in direct conflict with my 25 years plus of ‘fellowship’. Maybe at your age you feel equipped to rebuild a brand new fellowship from scratch that is not rooted in the faith healing of the early 20th century. Hell with modern technology I imagine it may be a breeze. But I get exhausted just thinking of it. I’d rather hang with Steve, Dave, Bob, Mike, Richard, Brianna, Jane, all of these people I know well, very few of whom are rabid theists, most of who are sort of live and let live. In fact most of the annoyance for me comes at the beginning and end when readings from the big book are foisted upon us. Its then that I worry about the newcomers and the future and the intransigence of religious institutions. That’s the part I’d most like to change. For me, I’ve found a way to make AA work which took less effort than starting a new one, (you may have seen my little booklet on the subject), and now I feel doubly blessed as I can log onto our international playtoy and communicate with atheist recovering persons all around the world in an instant!

    So, my point: starting a new playgroup sounds like it may be right. But staying in the playgroup I’ve been in half of my life, with all the guys I know, my “support group”, playing the Socratic gadfly (which, from what I know of you, probably also appeals), and maybe helping to change what IS slowly but surely into what SHOULD BE, well, maybe thats even better in a way.

    I respect what I have read of yours and would genuinely like to know your opinion on these subject…

    Adam N

    1. Hi Adam,

      Maybe I’m bad at math, but you are not as old as you may think you are. 🙂

      Thank you for your compliments and let me try to express my opinions on each point. Mainly, I’m a child of the early 80s. To me, there was never an argument over sexism— my generation was raised how to read and the Big Book is sexist and I have every right to say so. Blame the American school system, but I went to Catholic schools grades 1 through 8. No means no: No inappropriate, unwanted touching. Self-respect as a girl (or a boy) are important whether in church, school, work or an AA meeting.

      I think many still do come to AA as a last resort, and your story makes sense, “I have a problem, AA must have the answers.” At the time, what else would you have done? Did you even know at that time that AA was built around a “loving God” as their ultimate authority? I’m sure you were seeking help for stopping drinking, not help to find God. So I try very carefully not to blame all members of AA for AA’s problems— it’s just how AA was designed.

      I know as many probably who fit AA to fit themselves as those who fit themselves to fit AA; however I am more critical of the Old Timers using the “sacred” AA texts. (I use quotes for emphasis, not to claim AA believed their books are indeed holy.)

      I also know many who have stayed in AA for the social aspects of the fellowship. This, like Kiwanis, or the church, is one of those things that AA is great at— building a mini-society or community to base your life upon. Walking away for many doesn’t seem to be a healthy option. Yet again, for many, it is better to join up at their church, community organization, etc. than stay in AA. After 25 years, I’m sure you don’t want to leave behind your friends to make a stand against AA’s theism.

      However, if they were your friends, right, they’d be your friends even if you left AA. They’d meet you at the mall, for coffee, at a Christmas tree lighting, a night out for a play or a musical or a movie. Do these friends do this? No, they sit around a coffee pot each week and talk about AA and for many this isn’t a real enough circle of friends; it’s conditional on if one stays in AA. (I lost nearly all my AA friends when I left AA simply because I don’t believe in AA. I am not resentful; but I do feel a loss there.)

      Should there be a new fellowship? There’s SOS and there’s SMART and others but are they growing at the rate and speed as AA? Not really. Because many don’t seek fellowship for alcoholism recovery. Many are already involved in after-work communities, city organizations, PTA, or guilds. The question is: Do people need a “fellowship” for a lifetime (like the non-drinking Elks fraternity?) or do they need a temporary support group? I see the future trending towards temporary support groups and encouragement that people belong in the “real world.”

      So what is foremost on my mind lately is this: This is what AA is (religious) and certainly some members are atheists but “What does belief or non-belief have to do with most folks’ drinking problems?” They are looking for a day to day advice, wisdom, and workable plans to bridge them from quitting to modifying drinking that work and AA can get in the way of this process adding additional theological pondering to the mix.

      With that said, if AA is going to be continued to be used by the overwhelming majority of USA rehabs, if the courts are sending DUI cases to AA meetings then for the love of GOD/SOMETHING do something about membership safety. As the real old folks used to say, AA has gotten “too big for its britches.” If you own a TV, please tune into 48 Hours on CBS tomorrow night at 10pm where the Karla Brada story will air. She was a walk-in case who also had AA recommended by her rehab (she paid a thousand per day to be told AA was the solution— come on! AA is free! Rehabs are part of this problem.) She met a man court ordered to AA at least 52 times; I mean, he had a violent case history and restraining orders against him but both the courts, rehabs, and even AA itself figures AA is the right place for those people. That has to stop. He murdered Karla because he was a repeat offender with a long track record of repeating. And he was dangerous.

      If one is in AA and loves it there they really should not be defensive about the ones who criticize it; listening goes both ways. A new members hears out the AA way, and should be allowed to ask questions. And if current AA members truly are concerned and want to help all those with a drinking problem, at least be somewhat aware as individual AA members what the alternatives are. And suggest them to those who find AA is not for them.

      Ultimately, it’s about solving a drinking problem; not making sure AA is foisted unto everyone especially if its a bad fit and doesn’t make them better— or makes them worse.

      Thank you for your thoughts and if you have anymore feel free to share those too.

  2. Roxspin

    You are right and uncharacteristically insightful. No wonder you find AA meetings irritating!

    I’ve gleaned a few insights from your writings. One was when you referred to the fourth step as a process of “blaming the victim”. Not always true, but sometimes, yes.

    Today I spoke up at a meeting (I go to 2 or 3 conventional AA meetings a week, still. I generally don’t like it, though I’ve got a few “buddies”. I believe the meetings help me stay off the drugs and alcohol and, in my case, thats real big, Jekyll & Hyde shit). I spoke about how I resented AA for being religious. Some of the simple minds jumped to, if you have a resentment, theres something wrong with you. Another AA truism that, while sometimes can lead to insights, can also sometimes be just completely WRONG! It made me think of you and this new idea in my mind about how quick and comfy it is for me to settle into the notion that I am the problem. Sometimes I am, but sometimes I am not.

    I also appreciate what you are saying, and I am hearing the chatter from other sources, about nasty 13th step stuff and predatory behavior. I go to some small town, median age 40 or 50, we’ve mostly known each other for years, type meetings. So, this sounds like some nasty shit taking place somewhere else, but its not a big part of my AA life. That shit sounds horrible.

    I just wanted to thank you. I greatly appreciate any discourse with intelligent, free thinking persons on these subjects. If you are willing to be not too hyper critical, I’d genuinely love your feedback on my little book. I think its got some good stuff in it, and I always wonder what bright people who read it think (I have received some very flattering reviews from some relative ‘big shots’, which has been a nice boost for my self esteem) If you’re a broke person I can send you a copy. Its short. And it comes from my ‘old school’ perspective. Im probably older than your dad. So, keep that in mind.

    Anyways, I wish you the best of luck in life and all. You are a shining start and a force to be reckoned with. Go get ’em…

    Adam

    1. Lol, my dad’s 67. Thanks for the words of support; and if you’d like to arrange getting that book out to me I can be reached via julietabram81@gmail.com

      Did you catch the 48 Hours episode Nov. 29? It was about AA’s lack of safety policies and how court ordered violent and sex offenders are sent to meetings— of course, this isn’t happening at every meeting, but even one AA murder is too many. And there’s been more than one. When it comes to what may be, or may not be, working for you in AA ultimately I find all/nothing (black and white) thinking to be a problem for anyone. Some resentments may well be the motivation to make a real big change. Some may destroy you. There’s gray areas. Parroting the Big Book will not make a person sober. I think you have the right idea, you filled up your old drinking time with meeting time. But is it really the meetings you need now for the rest of your life? Are there other social outlets around, or is AA the only social outlet you have? (Sorry I sound so nosy.)

      I usually take to a new task and want to get it right, and work hard at it. So the 4th step, in order to be done right, had to be thorough and honest from the very start. I think I went all the way back to age 4 at least. I left no stone un-turned. Of course this was overkill, but I was desperate for AA to fix me and therefore fix my whole life.

      After a very traumatic abusive situation I would have taken a staple gun to my head, poured wax into my eyes, and torn off my toenails if someone said those things would fix everything that ever went wrong in my life; I’d find Utopia at last. I’d walk under the arch and trudge the road of happy destiny, etc. Lol. I was 21/22. I was kind of a sucker back then. And way to young to be labeled an alcoholic for life.

      I kept trying to stretch out and exaggerate my drinking just to fit in. I don’t fault the good guys in the program for doing the bad things in AA; I fault the program for being permissive of all/nothing thinking. I fault people for being bystanders when something wrong happens.

      All I would want AA to do is get some safety policies and make it ABUNDANTLY CLEAR that they are not the only way and, somehow, encourage people to educate themselves on their own time about the “disease” and various treatments, etc. Shouldn’t a person want/desire to learn more about their supposed condition anyway? Heck, people get a cough and go to WebMD.

      Again, thanks for your comment and best of luck to you also on the book, and on freely thinking and freely sharing wherever you may go. (If any AA group, or any group, suppresses information and discourages education — well— I would run the other way. But I guess after a time there’s some entertainment value in it all.)

  3. Roxspin/Abrams…
    Your work is awesome. I would appreciate a chance to correspond directly with you. I have some questions, I would appreciate your perspective on them. I thought about your work today when I looked at AAAgnostica, which had a focus today I thought you’d be interested in. I am also curious about your opinion on The Fix, what you think of it, in all honesty. And I have more general, abstract questions as well…
    My book is published, but my guess is you’d not like it at all, so no way am I gonna send you a copy…
    Adam N

    1. Hey Adam,

      Thanks for your compliment. I’ll check out the AAAgnostica recent post not sure which one you are referring to as I don’t check in there often. I have no opinion on the Fix in terms of good or bad, they have a lot of articles which date back a few years and seems to be a good mix of recovery options presented, all opinions are there… Your questions are welcome. And perhaps you can tell me a summary what your book is about, I don’t know why I wouldn’t like it as I try to find good in everything actually, lol. Take care. And again, thanks for commenting and reading my blog.

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