Archives for posts with tag: Addiction

My friend Bryan asks  me to lead the huge Monday night meeting held at the cream colored, concrete church or Rodeo Drive.

I agreed to address the cult.  You know how I feel about LA AA.

I spent the larger part of the day at home, packing.   I bought a coat from RRL.   A beautiful navy pea coat with brass buttons and a dramatic pleat in the back.

At lunch time I have a conversation with a financier and discuss tax credits.

Before the AA event I nip into Venice where I meet an actress.  We drink hot chocolate and discuss the script.   She has good ideas.

She has good casting ideas.

She is generous and interesting and interested.  She doesn’t get recognized.

I drive with the Little Dog to Beverly Hills.  Outside the church I notice people I know from the past… smoking.  People with small amounts of recovery.  Limited time in AA.  People who can’t stay sober for longer than a few months.

Leading the meeting means that I have to direct the format of the meeting as written then tell my story.  The story divided into three parts: Experience, Strength and Hope.   How it was and how it is now.

Well, you are meant to have a great story.  I don’t have a great story.  Not this year.

Inside the hall my mouth dries, I can see the bloated face of a gay film producer who just cannot stay sober and will die drunk.  His equally incompetent sober friends will mourn his death.  They will say things like, ‘Peter struggled so hard to stay sober’.

They will cry for the duration of the memorial then they will scamper like hairy children to another miserable dying addict who can’t stay clean or sober.

The same people are found laughing at the back of meetings.  Unable to take anyone seriously other than themselves.

Peter has four pitiful months.  He mocks my struggle or the struggles of people like me because he has never had more than a few months clean.  He will never know what it is like not to drink for a decade or more or what tribulations that incurs.

I didn’t tow the party line. I told them what was going on.  A public flaying.

I flayed myself.

What am I doing here? I thought.  What am I doing here telling these people my secrets?  What the hell do I do this for?  I sipped at my bottle of water.  I wore my new spectacles.

On the way back to Malibu I listened to NPR.  They were playing Bridge when I got home.  Eating marzipan mice.

The speaker of the Ugandan parliament has promised she will pass the so-called “Kill the Gays” bill in the next two weeks — she called it a “Christmas gift” for the Ugandan people. 

How will she achieve that?   There’s one born every minute.

I just put my AA ‘Big Book’ in the trash.

Does this mean I will die? Well yes, eventually.

Does this mean I will drink again? Maybe, but not immediately.

Does this mean that I’ll stop believing in god? Definitely not.

“Like any cult, religion or philosophy, AA leans heavily on the good will and participation of its members. I like the saying “if you like everybody you meet in AA, you aren’t going to enough meetings“. People should not be accountable for ideas, only for their actions. I have never had high expectations of AA, and so they are usually exceeded by the results. “Faith without works is dead”. The book is overrated, Duncan, everybody knows that. But the Love in AA is palpable.”

Dan my friend wrote the above. Men like him initially convinced me that AA was good. I was attracted to their nuanced reasoning, their warmth, their ‘spirituality’. I was not wrong, people like Dan were the reason I kept going back.

Explaining AA to the uninitiated is like teaching a baboon how to knit.

Writing this, even now, I can convince myself to haul the AA Big Book out of the trash…that things weren’t that bad, that I should look at ‘my part’, that if only I had worked the 12 steps just a little bit harder…

The reason I moved to LA? The reason I uprooted my home, my life…myself? Alcoholics Anonymous.

The comfy Palisade stag meetings, the jolly Rodeo social, the stoic recovery center.

I loved UTA owner Jeremy Zimmer’s Saturday morning industry meeting where the producers, writers, actors and directors came to flay themselves before the UTA grandee.

I was rapt by the harrowing story of child sex abuse and violence therapist Sean McFarlane dramatically told when ever he was asked to testify.

I watched ‘Big’ Robert gather his flock of new comers/sponsees at the 7am Bank meeting and take them diligently through the twelve steps.

It took five years to see through each of these scam merchants.

Jeremy Zimmer uses his meeting to ensnare and compromise celebrities in trouble. Fellow alcoholic industry folk, realizing that Jeremy is a sick man do not risk leaving the meeting, nor do directors and actors who want his patronage. Jeremy Zimmer is a sadist. Laughing and joking as men cry pitifully about their ‘rock bottom’.

The only men he has compassion for are men that mean nothing to him professionally.

Sean McFarlane, perhaps the worst scam artist in the AA SAA organization, effectively getting rich men to pay to sponsor them.

Sponsorship is a service supposedly supplied ‘for fun and for free’ from elder AAers to the new comer, helping them understand the 12 steps, helping them understand the Big Book of AA…a sort of bible written by Bill Wilson the founder of AA.

Sean thinks nothing of taking huge amounts of money from naive new comers for his sponsorship services.

Sean (pronounced seen) McFarlane, provides counseling as a sex therapist but I have no proof that he has any formal training nor counseling himself, nor support, even a sponsor? If anyone has proof that this monster has any training…please provide it.

Sean oversees the fate of cheating celebrities who routinely fall from grace and into his Wednesday morning SAA meeting…needing their family back, their reputation saved, their need to disguise their pedophile peccadillos…put humpty dumpty together again.

Sean thinks he is a very big deal, a super hero, leaping over imagined cars to save his clients from tranny hookers bent on destroying his clients.

As for Big Robert, the multimillionaire ex basketball player…well it turns out that this self-proclaimed AA guru is in fact a compulsive liar who, whilst banging his sponsees heads with the big book bible…is in fact gorging on un-prescribed prescription meds. He routinely tells his group of sycophantic male followers that AA does not ‘shoot its wounded’…which is patently untrue.

I thought, when I moved to LA that finally…I had come home.

It is evident from the 2006/7 blogs that I loved it and it loved me. A family of men and women who could always forgive, would always forgive.

Well, that was the first of my mistakes. I was wrong about them. Perhaps when I moved here AA was different, I was different?

AA is a cult. Like scientology it trades on the secret lives of its members. Like scientology it requires devotion. Blind devotion. Like scientology there is a vile abuse of power. Those who want to wrestle the leadership, become gurus, lie and steal…all in the name of recovery.

Most so-called addicts and alcoholics are mental patients with no mental hospital to go to.

Look at the beautiful man at the top of this post. His name was Evan Landry. He was a friend of mine. An AA friend. Wow, I was bowled over with Evan, his aggressive, sexy ways…his vulnerability. He served in Iraq, he was an MMA fighter, I saw him fight.

He had a sexy girlfriend he shared with Mike Tyson but wasn’t above going to…how shall we say…the dark side.

Well, last night Evan Landry killed himself. Another AA tragedy. Today his friends think it is ‘sad but not unexpected’. They have buried so many friends, their indifference is as unexpected as Evan’s OD.

People like Sean McFarlane will remember him, use his death as evidence that we must never, ever leave AA.

His PTSD unaddressed, all he needed (according to his AA friends) was the 12 steps.

Like prescribing leaches for terminal cancer.

In the USA there are a hundred treatment centers where addiction can be fought with the ubiquitous 12 steps…if you have the money. In my experience getting help with any other mental condition is almost impossible.

Evan Landry put his faith in AA like so many of us did…but our problems were complicated by AA and sadly may have killed dear Evan and many men and women like him.

I don’t go to AA funerals because they are a sick joke. I might, however, go to this one. Just to laugh at the hypocrites that killed Evan with their medieval prescription for a better life.

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