Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Good Tuesday Morning

I am feeling rather dull this morning - I have no great ideas to write about today. I checked my site meter for recent searches, and imagine my amazement to find a search for "pod people in alcoholics anonymous." And somehow my blog was on the first page of results for that search: 'alcoholic' + 'anonymous' are in my blog name. 'pod' comes up every time I have written about my iPod. But I wonder, what the heck was that person looking for?

Last night, I met with a sponsee after work, and then drove over to an information meeting about a program I have always wanted to do. I don't know how much to write about it. It is a 4 year program of bible study. I signed on the dotted line, and wrote a check! I am so very excited about this. It doesn't start until August, but I will have homework to do before then.

One of the most amazing things to me about this journey is that I can walk right into a church and talk with people. I don't feel that I have to make excuses or tell "white lies" about my life. I feel just fine to sit and talk with the church ladies and gents. I guess there is no huge discrepancy between my values and my actions today - and that my friends - is indeed a miracle! Only by the Grace of a loving God and the program of Alcoholics Anonymous (and lots of time) could this have ever happened. And please don't think I think I am perfect, because I am far from - but I am moving in a positive direction.

So now I shall go outside on a beautiful cool summer (it is really summer now dAAve!) morning and run - and then get to work. Life is so incredibly good.

"It is easy to let up on the spiritual program of action and rest on our laurels. We are headed for trouble if we do, for alcohol is a subtle foe. We are not cured of alcoholism. What we really have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition. Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God's will into all of our activities. 'How can I best serve Thee - Thy will (not mine) be done.' These are thoughts which must go with us constantly." -- Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 85

13 comments:

Scott W said...

Pod People in AA starring Kevin McCarthy! That original movie creeped me out, but I didn't know all those pod people were drunks.

Mary Christine said...

Oh - The Invasion of the Body Snatchers. I think that is one of the scariest movies I have ever seen! However, if you took a cynical view of AA, you could make a case that our broken disgusting selves were replaced by happy, shining 'pod' people! hmmm. interesting.

dAAve said...

It's not oppresively hot here (this week).
I did not mean to imply anything negative in my post for today, so not sure where you got that from. On re-reading it, I can't find it.
But I will watch out for negative feelings and turn them over if they pop up.

lushgurl said...

I am embracing my daily reprieve today. Thanks for reminding me to do that!
Love ya MC

Shannon said...

the sun is here today too- wow 2 days in a row I am excited
LOL
have a great day

Anonymous said...

I'm actually going to answer your question, two years later, because I came to your blog searching for the same thing (pod people in alcoholics anonymous)

The "Pod People" are a phenomenon in San Francisco AA. They're a sort of cultish offshoot of AA that emphasizes rigorous and constant inventory (you can always spot a "Pod" because they walk around with a lined notebook all day and have it out at every meeting, scribbling away furiously).

They also have several-hour-long meetings where members will stand up and rant (for sometimes over an hour) and everyone builds up into this crazy catharsis of laughing and...

well, you'd really have to be there.

They've got a terrible reputation in SF because people believe they like to disrupt other meetings and "take them over" and assimilate people into the Pod. I think that's a bunch of baloney, but they're definitely an odd bunch. They also have some of the hallmarks of a cult, such as a Dear Leader who sponsors the entire group (and who will interrupt peoples' shares and steer them), the perception that their AA is the only true AA, and a nasty persecution complex (their main persecutor seems to be Central Office).

So now you know :)

Anonymous said...

The 'pods' have a well-earned reputation for 13th stepping. Also they (used to?) require newcomers to go to Trancendental Meditation and pay for a Mantra. Sponsors received a kickback from TM for each newcomer.

The pods are followers of a well respected AA couple in SF. I don't know how the lunacy came in but it is quite scary. Pods all talk alike and have a strange giggle they copy from each other.

Anonymous said...

I came here looking for info on the same group as the person above. I had heard everything they said from some AA group members yesterday and was curious. Apparently they are all also heavily pressured to work in a shoe-shine shop operated by the lead couple. The person who told me about them works in Central Office and says their main concern is that newcomers will show up at one of these meetings and think it's what AA is all about, and run screaming.

I was told of a meeting that lasted 4 hours and when someone finally tried to leave they were chased down the hallway, and when she still insisted on leaving, was told, "Good luck staying sober today!" (sarcastically).

Definitely not a representation of what AA is about, as I'm sure you know.

Anonymous said...

I am a member of the pods well really just an A memeber but the ones you are referring to in your blog. I'm also 22 mother f-ing years sober...18 years of daily steps... it works! and I don't work at the shoeshine company... it's actually an llc owned by three sober AA members not a couple..fyi people work there cause they can't work anywhere else and/ or they enjoy being with their fellows. oh and no one gets money for meditation and no one cares if you stay or go, so not a cult that is my favorite part.

Anonymous said...

LISTEN HERE YOU MF...I'VE BEEN CLEAN 27 YRS + AND I WAS HERE WHEN YOU F'N PODS CAME OUT. THE FOUNDERS NAME IS SYLVIA. I CAN'T REMEMBER THE GUYS NAME AND THEY DID CHARGE NEWCOMERS TO LEARN THEIR TYPE OF MEDITATION AND THEY DID SAY YOU WOULD RELAPSE IF YOU DIDN'T DO IT THEIR WAY BITCH...WHY DON'T YOU GROW SOME AND RESPOND SYLVIA...YOU STARTED THIS CRAP YEARS AGO AND YOU MADE LOTS OF MONEY AND YOU DONT HAVE THE BALLS TO OWN YOUR SHIT...TIM

Mary Christine said...

This is the most bizarre thing. I never heard of pod people until I posted this. I am not one. I don't even know what they are.

I guess this proves the adage that nothing put on the internet ever goes away. I posted this in 2007 - about someone getting to my blog by searching "pod people in AA". I guess they are still searching the same thing and still ending up at my blog.

Anonymous said...

There are pod people in my Tuesday group and Anonymous, you hit the nail on the head when you say that they "rant" and break out in hysterical laughter.

Part of me builds resentments towards them for infiltrating my group, another part of me thinks "well, they're just doing the best that they can". At the end of the day, I feel that they don't contribute to the meetings in a positive way and go way off topic too much.

Also, this one guy in the group won't stop hysterically laughing that it drives me insane. I suppose I can always find another meeting, but I have a commitment at this one and I really like the other alcoholics in the group.

But it's funny to hear that it is unique to SF AA...only in the city, right?

Congratulations to everyone who is sober today. I have 6 months today and it is all because of the program.

Ciao!

Travis said...

I went to my first AA meeting ever yesterday, and unintentionally showed up at a pod meeting. They were extremely welcoming, and I definitely appreciated the overall message / approach that they were advocating. There were some genuinely excellent people there, and I got a lot of it. I showed up at 1pm, and after a couple of hours into it I started wondering when it was going to end. Apparently never, because I eventually excused myself at about 445. My personal take on it is that it is no more cultish than any church. It is sort of like a congregation, the leader is extremely entertaining and sincere, and the folks in there were candid and very supportive. There is an element of "group" and "community", and they do have a unique approach. I don't understand the vitriol being directed at them, because they seem like an entirely benevolent group aimed at helping fellow alcoholics. My only criticism is that I can't possibly fathom attending a weekly meeting that lasts multiple hours, with everything else on my plate. But to those folks in the pod meeting, best of luck to you in staying sober, and I applaud the group for its enthusiasm and commitment to helping each other out.