The Marina Dock Newsletter July 2006
Dear Marina Dock Members
Thank you one and all for your ongoing generous financial support.
We had a fairly typical below average June. The summer months
of June, July and August are seasonally slower for us donation
wise. It's hard to believe we are halfway through the year,
it seems for me these days, time is measured in terms of the
Marina Dock Newsletter and how long I can procrastinate between
issues. Every month I promise myself I will start early, write
something interesting, be more judicious with punctuation and
grammar, and produce a well written document, that even the
most diligent of grammarians among us could not find fault with.
Alas it never happens,
I inevitably procrastinate and engage in all kinds of distractions
and avoidance behavior (this month The World Cup). The line
"procrastination is a five syllable word for sloth,"
is probably, because of it's many practitioners, one of the
most quotable of AA quotes. It is also I believe one of the
first pieces of complex recovery language we master as newcomers,
we like to bandy it about, in an attempt to impress or less
erudite fellows, they would be the ones who are still in their
first thirty days. Yes I must be rigorously honest and confess
I am still a big procrastinator in many areas of my life.
The following excerpt
is from the self help Psychology book, Be Your Own Therapist:
If you don't take
action now but instead procrastinate, there is always a reason
that is valid for you. Perhaps the action itself or the timing
of the action is wrong for you, perhaps you need to grow before
the action may be accomplished, or perhaps you just need to
overcome inertia. Whatever the case, there is likely to be
some fear that needs to be faced. If your inertia stems from
fear, can you overcome your fear of this specific change by
modifying your beliefs? Do you fear all changes? The best
course when faced with procrastination is often to do the
first step of the action anyway. If the first step goes well,
inertia was probably the cause of your procrastination. If
you try the first step and it goes badly, then procrastination
is probably right for you now; and you will probably need
to examine yourself further. Also, be on the lookout for self-deception
concerning procrastination, because addictions (such as TV,
food, smoking, etc.) are often used to deceive ourselves in
these matters. When faced with a multistage process such as
a complete change in career or an attempt to start up a business,
always keep yourself as current as possible with actions.
If you know, for example, that one of your next steps is to
find out what city permits you need for your new business,
this small unfinished task will add to your current level
of stress. Most people do not realize that a simple unfinished
task such as gathering a piece of information can increase
our stress levels.
Our intentions to
read 100 books or do 25 projects around the house rob us of
present day energy. Instead, turn such intentions in your
mind into possibilities, as suggested in Appendix C. If you
intend action, your body feels the anticipation until you
take the action or you change your intention. It is easiest
to change these intentions into possibilities. You can review
these possibilities every month, to select those to be attempted
next month. In a multistage change process that can take months
or years, there will be times when no action is appropriate.
At such times procrastination is not the issue, and it is
important then not to be self-critical.
Happy Birthday. I hope you had a relaxing day. Here are a
few words for the News- Letter.
My name is
I am a recovering Alcoholic. About 12 years ago, I started to
attend meetings at the Marina Dock. I was very damaged from
years of active alcoholism. Although I had relapses, I always
returned to the Marina Dock. Irish Tony with Compassion, and
a wonderful sense of humor, always made me feel very welcome
and comfortable. Tony also had the intuition that I needed additional
help in my Recovery, and connected me with a Psycho- Therapist.
Some of us need additional help. Fortunately, I am doing well
and am enjoying six years of sobriety. The Marina Dock is open
daily over 18 hours during the week, and over 19 hours on Fridays
and Saturdays. This is Unique. In my travels across the United
States, I have not found a Club with such expansive hours. Most
clubs close for a few hours in the afternoon, and only stay
open late on weekends. Alcoholism is a fatal disease. My recovery
in AA has been Amazing Grace. The Marina Dock with its compassion
and wealth of meetings has helped save my life.
I had the pleasure of stopping by with my girl friend on Monday
night for a meeting at the marina dock. We were visiting from
Los Angeles .I grabbed a copy of your newsletter and read the
story of "jay walker".
We found it really f****** hysterical. back in L.A ,I find out
today around 4:00pm that I'm leading an 11th tradition step
study at Tadford hall here in Sherman Oaks at 6pm. I went online
and printed out a copy of the "jay walker" story and
read part of it to the crowd, emphasizing the being too anonymous
portion that dr. bob had spoke of. the fluent German response
is a real keeper,
I just wanted to give you props and hope you don't mind:
All the best Johnny
p.s. if you're
ever in L.A. look me up.
To: Irish Tony
Date: Friday, June 30, 2006 03:42 am
Subject: Happiness at the Dock
It was a cold wet Thursday evening in November 2005, when I
called the AA hot line to learn of any meetings in Marin, as
I was heading home after a day in The City. The representative
on the other side of the phone stated that there were no 10:00PM
meetings in Marin, but that there was one in San Francisco.
He subsequently directed me to the Marina Dock, where a 10:OOPM
meeting was about to start. I was so happy to have a meeting
available to me, because as a night owl, a late-night meeting
The speaker that night gave a great talk, but what resonated
with me, besides the meeting being such a good one, was the
facility itself. Everything seemed to be in such nice order,
from the coffee/tea service, to the other refreshments, and
even stations to log on and check email. What a departure from
some of the hellholes I have been in. Not that the message of
recovery can't be found in any venue, but give me a comfortable
setting any day, and I will be happiest. Since that first Thursday,
I have repeatedly gone most Thursdays at 10:OOPM, and even other
days both at 10:OO, as well as at other times. The fact that
there are meetings at the Dock 7 days a week, from morning to
night, has made it such a wonderful place to go.
What has made another very strong impression is the sense of
family that exists at the Dock. Not only from the regulars,
but with the staff there as well. It is so incredibly comforting
to come to a place and get to know a group of people, and have
them get a chance to know me. I can be having a day filled with
trials and tribulations, and once I walk through the doors of
the Dock and take a seat in one of the meeting rooms I instantly
feel grounded. It is a special feeling which words would be
hard pressed to describe.
Having such a nice place to participate in my recovery is a
true delight. When I was the secretary of a meeting for the
past 6 months in Marin, I was able to find great speakers from
the Dock, much like a fisherman would fetch a good catch at
a stocked trout pond. All I had to do was cast a line, (Show
up), and I would inevitably find someone ready, willing and
able to help carry the message.
I feel very fortunate to have such a wonderful meeting place
in the recovery community.
Philip L., Marin
Jay WalkER UPDATE
I had a Jay Walker
sighting a few days ago, Jay was working the busy intersection
of Sutter and Van Ness. As I approached he was in the middle
of a potential hit. He was sporting his Treasure Island look
that is now his trademark. emaciated, unshaven , barefooted
with a pair of late eighties Robinson Crusoe three quarter length
pants. He came up broadside to this young couple who were looking
at a city map. "I am not an inspirational panhandler"
Jay pleaded "I have lost all sense of dignity and self
-respect, I am basically a bum" The couple who appeared
to be middle-class, New-Euro-Riche, looked incredulously at
The Jay Man and fled into the back of a waiting Taxi.
a Great Independence Day.