AA Bull$hit Bingo
Do you catch yourself falling asleep in meetings? What about those long and boring drunk-a-logs? Here is a way to change all that…
1. Before (or during) your next meeting, prepare yourself by drawing a square. I find that 5″ x 5″ is a good size. Divide the card into columns-five across and five down. That will give you 25 one-inch blocks.
2. Write one of the following word/phrases in each block:
3) Living Amends
4) Meaningful Relationship
6) I’m Stuck on Step __
7) I Couldn’t Find A Meeting
8) Before I joined AA, I was….
11) Yeah But
12) But….don’t you think
14) Bill W. said….
15) Rational Recovery
16) Recovering Person
17) Searching (as in, “for answers”)
19) Stinkin’ Thinkin’
21) He said
23) I heard
25) I don’t know much about this, but…
3. Check off the appropriate block when you hear one of those words or
4. When you get five blocks horizontally, vertically, or diagonally, stand
up and shout “BULL$HIT!”
TESTIMONIALS FROM SATISFIED “AA BULL$HIT BINGO” PLAYERS:
“I had been in the meeting for only five minutes when I won.” – Adam W., Austin
“My attention span at meetings has improved dramatically.” – David T., London
“What a gas! Meetings will never be the same for me after my first win.” — Dan J., NY City
“The atmosphere was tense in the last “Honesty” meeting as 14 of us waited for the fifth box.” — Ben G., Denver
“The speaker was stunned as eight of us screamed out “BULL$HIT” for the third time in 20 minutes.” – Carnie Joe, Miami
(Taken from a letter to Orange)
When I was a kid, my cousin and I got kicked out of church for laughing that kind of helpless, snorking, doubled over, crying, clutching each other laugh that erupts when you’re trying to hold in a giggle. It’s also the kind of laugh that will summon the sour old usher to drag you out by the ear.
Anyway, I’ve had this snorking problem all my life. And if you tell me something is not funny, that will just make it even funnier. I remember taking a James Joyce class when I was in college, where my classmates were just insufferable. I rocked that class with an A, but I spent all of it in the back of the classroom, with a like-minded friend, weeping into my Ulysses, while people said things to the professor like, “Oh, that was spoken like a true Joycean!” Oh god, snnk!
There was one A.Aer in the class with us – and I know this because he was actually in a band with my boyfriend, and was always working the 12th step – who actually tattled on me to my boyfriend. “Chris told me tonight that you and Betty are the most immature people in the English department. You make a mockery of everything.” Yeah, well, if he weren’t the biggest tool in the department, we wouldn’t be laughing at him every day.
I think this character flaw of mine makes me utterly “constitutionally incapable” of attending A.A., and I also think that, after immersing myself in a recovering community for the past couple of years, this blog, for me, is something like a snork – only a little more articulate.
Well, I got it in my head today to see if I could find any examples of really funny A.A. humor. I failed. I really tried. “Don’t take yourself too damn seriously,” my ass. They call that Rule #62, by the way – and from what I can tell so far, the directive strikes the same tone as that one asshole who marches up to women on the street and orders them to smile.
Here’s the problem: everything that’s really funny about A.A. is off limits to A.A.s – and they don’t think those things are funny, anyway. One function of humor is to shatter taboos and expose the emperor’s new clothes – to poke fun at power. And while a masterful pratt fall will make me laugh for days, most comedy goes after power or it is self-effacing. You can’t really be very funny if you’re trying to protect a status quo and the power structure. The only humor options available to you, when you’re taking yourself too damn seriously, are either bullying (which is basically just humiliating someone with less power than you and then going, “What? Don’t you have a sense of humor? Don’t take yourself so damn seriously. Smile!”) or saccharine and insipid (like “Ziggy” which exists for the sole purpose of simply not offending anyone, ever).
There’s been a lot made of the fact that, in the comedy department, liberals have it all over conservatives. Conservatives. Cannot. Compete. because, like A.A.s, they don’t have anything to work with. The similarity is in their authoritarian worldview, which is very limiting in the area of iconoclastic laffriots. And what you end up with is Ann Coulter calling John Edwards a faggot, “Cathy” trying on another bathing suit, or this:
It could be that I just didn’t look hard enough. So, here’s a challenge for you: Bring the funny! Find some real A.A. humor, from an A.A.er, about A.A. (not just old jokes that have been re-written about “oldtimers” and “pigeons”). There’s got to be something out there. Ready? Go!