My "TRUE STORY" from five days ago--steveroni
OLD TIMERS vs LONG TIMERS
MEMBERS OF THE JURY
MEMBERS OF THE JURY
In my early morning group of usual 60-80 people, we have about a third beginners, a third old-timers, and a third from five to twenty years. Myself, I prefer the term "Long-Timer" to "Old-Timer", simply because even at age 75, I really do not 'feel' old. When I was a child, age 75 was an unrealistic goal of a man's longevity, which was usually measured somewhere in the sixth decade of life.
Anyways, around one far corner of our huge circle of tables sits what some of us call the "jury". Now this is a group of about four really old-timers, of whom it's said, if one of them smiled, you might hear the noise from a cracked face, maybe a mile away. Actually, they are all well-meaning fellows, have been sober many years (from 29-38), show up every day. Amongst all the good which emanates from this corner of the room...leave it to steveroni to pick out the single fault, the one item which might be considered a failing--I say the only ONE!
That one defect is a tendency to (not quite quietly quiet enough!) snicker, to not silently enough, whisper, and to quite obviously roll eyeballs, sigh, shake heads, etc., as another member of the group is talking/sharing/pouring out her/his heart. If someone talks--even five seconds--past their two-minute limit, they look at their watches in expectant waitfulness of the closing sentence. You probably, from my description, know just the type of old guy (seems like never are they women who do this?) of whom I speak.
For months I've had the feeling that I was a target of this crapola, but was never certain. I figured, since I used to be "king" of paranoia, that my old nemesis was returning, and I needed some work in the 'fear' area--although I was not aware of any fear in me--recently, at least. So last week I decided to sit right behind this group in those chairs preferred by beginners--along the far wall? Ha! You DO know! That way, I could better note if they were secretly hootin' at moi.
Well, it turned out, they were. As soon as I began to talk (you guys know I don't say TOO much dumb shit, right?) the shenanigans began. They seemingly didn't even realize I was sitting close enough to give them haircuts. Well, I just spoke through it all, as if I was undisturbed--yeah, RIGHT!
It was good for me to find out that I--Mr Perfect--still had some anger and resentment inside me. Shame on God, I thought He had removed them all, for all time! ( See, this is a 'learning' experience I'm relating here.) Well, by the end of the meeting 8 AM, I was SEETHING!
My sponsor was not in the room that morning, so I sought out a female friend, whose sobriety I've long respected, and whose counsel I admired...and handed my problem to her, with the question (rather stupid?) "Should I confront these guys, should I ignore it, I'm really tore up inside me, etc."
And you know what she said?
J. told me, "Pray for them. They are sober, sure, but they are very immature and judgmental, and maybe even envious of you and others. So, yes, pray for them, wish for them all the nice things you'd wish for yourself today."
I got on my scooter, and began praying. One minute later, before I had reached the edge of the parking lot by the street, my resentment, anger, and fear, and paranoia, were gone. Completely! And I felt GREAT again, just like (almost) always! Thank you J., thank You, God, thank you, Alcoholics Anonymous! And the whole deal was lifted and is still gone. Completely!
End of the story is that J. told me EXACTLY what I would have told anyone else who might have come to me, with the same problem. I, without even thinking, would have said, "Pray for him or them!"
Well, I'll say it again, my favorite line: "Ya Never Know!"
happily and gratefully submitted by steveroni