Non-Profit Corporation

The Marina Dock Newsletter July 2002

Dear Marina Dock Members and Patrons alike,

Thank you for your continued support. It is only through your generous contributions that we continue to keep our doors open and make the many necessary upgrades and improvements to this unique meeting facility and social club.


We have put new carpeting in the Social and West rooms. I know some people were asking why we did not also do the Middle Room. Well, initially it was not in the plans. Besides, there is more work to be done in that room in terms of painting and remodeling. When we complete those different projects, we will go ahead and put down some new carpeting, hopefully one that matches the other two rooms.

You may also have noticed we now have a brand new Beverage Air cooler in the Social Room. This was something long overdue. For many years, we struggled with that one small refrigerator behind the counter. I think it has been around since the end of prohibition but amazingly it still works and it never once let us down.

This new cooler system is by all accounts a big success giving us the capability to carry more items. We have added things like yogurt, rice drinks, rice pudding, iced tea, and large bottled waters to our selection. In addition, the staff no longer has to recite over and over what we carry. Our bill of fare is on display so people can make their own choice.


Many years ago when I was still out there, tilting at windmills and still doing things my way I worked on a remodeling job over on Presidio Heights. It was one of these projects that had unlimited resources and seemed to go on forever. Periodically, I would go on a humongous bender. Sometimes I would be gone for weeks on end only to return when funds were exhausted, depressed, demoralized, and nursing a monumental hangover.

One time I showed up with a hangover from hell and the governor (the boss) was waiting for me with a to do list a thick as the Book of Kells. Projects that involved Kango Hammers, drills and jackhammering old terrazzo floors. By the time the owner had finished reading off this list to me I was thinking if only an ambulance or a fire truck would pass this way I could jump in the back.

It was probably one of the few occasions or maybe the only time during my drinking career that I sought divine intercession. I looked to the heavens and inwardly petitioned for some kind of intervention. “Please God get me out of this one and I promise I will never drink again.” After a momentary silence, a voice seemed to respond calmly and repeatedly “Let go, let go, let go and let God. Everything is going to be OK. Take the jackhammer, turn on the compressor and follow directions.” I looked at himself who was now looming over me and appeared to be about eight feet tall and in no mood for compromise. Once more, I looked to the heavens and asked,  “Is there anybody else up there?” Of course, then I decided I was going to take things in hand again and get myself out of this mess all by myself. I figured that those old reliables arrogance, cleverness and wit would solve this problem. So putting on my best front in a voice sounding confident and self-assured I shouted, “Now hold on a minute, boss. That's a lot of work. You know, Rome wasn’t built in a day!” Unflinchingly, he shot back “I wasn’t there.”

Now we all know from our own experience that the greatest protection against relapse is our reliance on a God of our understanding but a very close second for me is the sound of drills, jackhammers and anything to do with remodeling jobs in Presidio Heights.


Just to remind everyone we have two great Nicotine Anonymous meetings at the Marina Dock. One is every Saturday morning at 10.00 am and the other is every Monday evening at 6.00 pm. Many individuals have finally kicked the habit by attending those meetings. If you are still thinking about quitting and it seems hopeless then give these meetings a shot. Statistics show that success over tobacco addiction involves several sustained attempts with the aid of a support group.


The CODA groups need people to commit to the meetings at the Marina Dock. Many times people will show up for a scheduled CODA meeting and if there is no one around, they will leave.

Again, when groups are faltering it involves a sustained effort from a small, dedicated, core group of people who are willing to invest time and effort in bringing them back to life. Experience has shown us that successful groups take from about six months to a year to take hold and survive long-term. Successful groups are the ones that have structure, constancy and dedicated individuals who place their recovery above everything else.


GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOALLLLLLLLLL!!!! Yes, it is that time again (i.e., The World Cup/La Copa Mondial depending on your cable options). This global event prompted me to write about how to find AA meeting when outside the US.

AA is a worldwide fellowship and I’ve been to meetings in Belgium, France and Turkey (all in English) and in Ireland and England over the past 12 months.

Your first port of call for information is the worldwide web. Go to and from there you can find the links to the international general service offices for dozens of countries across Europe, the Americas, Australia and Asia. Even if you are not going abroad, I encourage you to check out those links and appreciate the scale of the AA presence around the globe!

You can check out the meeting schedules or e-mail the international offices in advance for information and requests for the location of English-speaking meetings. In any case, it is worth printing out a copy of the general service address and telephone number in the country you’re visiting and taking it with you.

Your next choice would be to find an international directory for AA. You can call your local general service office in the US if you don’t have this and ask for this information.

Next, when you arrive in your country of choice, AA is usually in the local telephone directory and can be easily contacted. You may need to ask for help from your hotel or tourist office with this, if you don’t speak the language.

I will cover other groups in a later newsletter.


Although we don’t have many rules at the Marina Dock, starting in this newsletter, each month we will outline out of the rules for attending there. These rules apply to everyone that comes into the Marina Dock (patrons and members). They are designed to maintain a safe environment for all.

The first rule is that we do not allow soliciting for money, business, favors or members for any cause either in the facility or under Marina Dock auspices. If you want to hand out a recovery-related flyer or poster of some sort, check with the staff person at the front desk first so that it’s OK.

People in recovery can be vulnerable and we want everyone to feel safe in the Marina Dock.

If you feel uncomfortable about something, then report the matter in confidence to a staff member and it will be addressed quickly on your behalf.


Please contribute if you can. We need all the help we can get I am doing everything possible to make our little space in the universe better, brighter, safer and secure. We have to be competitive. We have to continue to grow, evolve and make things attractive for people to keep coming back.

Speaking of the universe, did you see a few weeks ago where a piece of rock the size of a football field left over from the formation of the planets missed us by about 75,000 miles? The scary part because scientists did not discover its presence until three days after it passed planet earth.  That would have been welcome news for me if it had been 75,000 miles closer and 20 years earlier as I was grappling with the jackhammer and hangover problems.

Today God, I know you are there, no reminders necessary, hold off on the rocks please.

Remember the solution is love. So, until next time,

Anthony T Murray (“Irish Tony”)


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