AA: It Doesn’t Mean What You Think It Means
AA has so many different definitions for common, everyday words, we thought that it would be useful to create reference page with commonly used words, and words for people and situations within AA for which there is not really a definition (contributor’s name is in parentheses):
AAnglish – the unique, slogan-filled, often contradictory language of Alcoholics Anonymous (Commonsense)
AAnguish – the distress an AA feels when someone points out their contradictions, selective history and ineffectiveness. Characterized by serenity ranting and personal attacks against the person causing the aanguish.
AAWS – legal name for publishing wing of Alcoholics Anonymous that seems to exist solely for the purposes of: A) litigating against impoverished AA adherents in countries outside the U.S.; and B) putting its foot in its mouth in print, then remaining silent on all issues that might directly concern it & its tendency to put its foot in its mouth. (Speedy)
A.A. Alfie – (aka, “Hallo Alfie”) – a troll of this blog. Known as “The Iron Man of AA,” for his unusual stamina in maintaining his ability to rationalize, lie, gaslight, slander and preach the virtues of AA for an entire year in a thread at the JREF forums. (see Alfieholics Anonymous)
Abuse Excuse – using alcohol abuse as an excuse for immoral or unethical behavior.
Al-Anon – auxiliary organization of family and friends (predominantly women) whose lack of spiritual enlightenment causes the alcoholic to drink, lose jobs, chase women, smoke and drink coffee. (Lucy)
Alcoholism – 1) a disease caused by a spiritual deficiency; 2) a symptom of inherent character flaws.
Alfieholics Anonymous – a tripped-out, bizarro version of AA; as dreamed up in the deluded mind of A.A. Alfie. (see A.A. Alfie)
Amends – 1) a quid pro quo set up by an AA’s higher power™, where as a condition of sobriety, the AA is forced to apologize to an often unwilling third party who either does not remember, or wants nothing to do with, the AA. It is often followed by another amends for freaking the unwilling third party out, and a third amends for holding a resentment against them for the embarrassment caused by the first amends; and concluded by telling the unwilling third party that it is their problem for not accepting the forced apology. 2) an insincere, forced apology. Like a kid being pulled by the ear by his teacher, to apologize to another kid for pushing them on the playground. 3) an AA bringing people back into their life whom he/she has fucked over, who likely wants nothing to do with him/her, and using them as an emotional tampon in their quest for spirituality.
Angry Person – Someone who questions the AA dogma.
Anonymity – a cornerstone of the AA program, which is steadfastly protected, unless breaking it will serve a greater purpose for an individual AA, or AA as a whole – in which case it is dropped like a bad habit.
Ass Hole – The hole dug for Bill Wilson’s grave.
“Attraction, not Promotion” – from tradition 11, the steadfast rule that AA does not promote itself – and tools AA uses to recruit membership, such as television and radio advertisements, forced attendance from the court, as a means of “aftercare” for patients who have been indoctrinated into the 12-step program from “two-hatters” who are employees of treatment facilities with whom AA has a symbiotic relationship, recruiting by members “carrying the message” directly into prisons, and participating in interventions – are not promotion, but are really attraction. Really. (See two-hatters and “carrying the message”)
Bang ‘er and Mash – The act of 13th Stepping a new member, typically male on female – then telling her to look at her part, and boasting to the others members what a whore she is. See thirteenth-stepping.
Belladonna – a spiritual awakening accelerant. Used by Bill Wilson when he had his ‘white light’ encounter with God.
Bennison, Daniel (aka, “Diablo”; aka, “Quagmire”) – resident troll of this blog; subject of the e-book A Life Gone Awry, about his abuse of residents of Elan School. Currently a resident of La La Land.
Big Book – Commonly used name of the AA bible, Alcoholics Anonymous.
Biggest Asshole Contest – an argument between two or more AAs who want to demonstrate how recovered they are, over which one of them had the worst drinking problem.
Billbal Thumper – An AA who quotes the the words of Bill Wilson, as though he were Jesus or Allah. See Dr. Bobblehead.
Billshit – Rants from the 12 x 12 or the ‘Big Book’; 2) anything quoted from the mouth of Bill Wilson. (btnben)
Birthday - anniversary of an AA’s quit date, but only for time in which they have been in AA, as outside sobriety is not “real sobriety”.
Bock, Jim – part-time cyber stalker, asshole irrigator, disciple of Clancy Imislund and batshit-crazy leader of the Sponsorship Group of Chatham, New Jersey; who threatened the creators of this Stinkin’ Thinkin‘ blog. (see Imislund, Clancy)
Boniface – 8th century monk whose manifested spirit dictated the book Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions to Bill Wilson.
Buchman, Frank – Founder and leader of The Oxford Group. See Oxford Group.
“Carrying the Message” – From step twelve, the practice of recruiting others into AA by use of manipulative and deceptive recruiting practices.
Cheever, Susan — far less distinguished daughter of American fiction writer John Cheever who (on occasion) displays a certain degree of syntactical adequacy while shamelessly shilling for AA, Bill Wilson (see — Wilson, Bill), & the anthropomorphizing of alcohol abuse / addiction. (Speedy)
Circular Logicstics – the practice of an AA navigating his/her way around the the ‘Big Book’, while still maintaining the required level of cognitive dissonance.
Codependency – a relationship addiction dreamed up by the 12-step recovery industry, commonly held by someone who has a loved one who is addicted to drugs and alcohol; 2) the pathological caring for another individual. Most Al-Anon members are codependent.
ConSTEPated – An AA member who is constantly plugged-up with [bull] shit. (Special Ed)
“contempt prior to investigation” – often used term by AAs to warn those who have heard, or who on the surface see some scary things about AA, that one should not judge AA before giving it a try. This only applies to how people should view AA, and not how AAs view everything outside of the organization. The term is wrongly attributed to a quote from Herbert Spencer in the “An Artist’s Concept” portion of the ‘Big Book’.
Controller – a non-alcoholic who tries to encourage the alcoholic in their life to stop drinking or to cut down (See enabler) (humanspirit)
Cross-talk – speaking out of turn, interrupting someone while they are speaking or giving direct advice to someone in a meeting. See “cross” talk.
“Cross” talk – the tacitly implied language among everyone in AA that the AA God™ is really the Christian god . See cross-talk.
Denial – a symptom of alcoholism. Because alcoholism is a “disease that tells me I don’t have a disease,” one of the symptoms is denial.
Diabaloney – any words uttered from our resident troll, Diablo (aka, Danny Bennison); 2) bullshit (See Rigorous Honesty)
Dick Head – an AA who selectively cites research from Dick B, an AA historian and friend of Stinkin’ Thinkin’, and disregards any and all negative history of Alcoholics Anonymous. (See Dick Burns)
Dick Burns – an affliction one gets from screwing people too often; 2) a religious nutjob and AA historian, aka Dick B, who writes a charitable, not always accurate, selective history of AA. (See Dick Head)
Dr. Bobblehead – An AA fundamentalist who primarily follows the words and teachings of “Dr Bob” Smith. See Billbal Thumper.
Drunkalogaholic – A person who replaces their addiction for alcohol, with an addiction to Alcoholics Anonymous.
Dry Drunk - A pejorative, used to describe an alcoholic who got sober without using the steps, and without AA. Meant to imply that a person’s state of sobriety is tenuous, and used as a shutdown mechanism – typically along with accusations that a person is angry – against anyone who questions the AA dogma.
Duplipreachous – duplicitous preaching, as in telling someone “I don’t speak for AA”, and turning around beginning the next sentence to say exactly what AA thinks on a subject; or, manipulating a “pigeon” with lies by omission. (See pigeon)
Enabler – 1) anyone who does not immediately cut off all relations with a person who develops an addiction problem, even when they sure as hell don’t need any enabling from anyone; 2) a non-alcoholic who has doubts about the efficacy of the 12-step program. (humanspirit)
“Everything happens for a reason” – a phrase meaning all events are deterministic, not probabilistic. Thus, random chance does not exist and profits to a casino from gaming are the result of magic. Similarly, actuarial tables are of no real value to the life insurance industry. (Commonsense)
“fake it ’til you make it” – often used slogan, meaning that a person should pretend to believe the AA dogma, until they are fully brainwashed and indoctrinated.
Fourteenth-stepping – the act of talking a person out of continuing their participation in AA; 2) de-programming a person who has been brainwashed by AA. (see Zero-stepping) (Martha)
Glock, Lance – a convicted sexual deviant, and a 13th-stepper who runs the Johnson Sober Living House in Covina, California.
God™ – an omnipotent and omniscient being who has a fetish for keeping alcoholics sober for twenty-four hour stretches; but who did not care about them before they attended AA, and will drop them if they stop working the 12-steps. See higher power.
Godbotting – quoting the ‘Big Book’ of AA to settle arguments or disputes, as though it is infallible holy scripture.
Godpuppettry – the act of speaking for God, as though He were a sock puppet, and explaining how He intervened in your life to save you from alcoholic despair.
Granfalloonacy – creating a closed society of nutjobs who think they have a shared purpose of sobriety that no outsiders understand, but whose association is nothing more than a crazy religion.
Granfalloonatic – an AA who has bought into the dogma.
Greeter – the initiator of the love bombing process. A greeter welcomes all newcomers, much like that annoying person who stands at the entrance of Wal-Mart. Assigning a person “greeter” has an additional purpose making the greeter feel as though they are an important part of the group, which solidifies their emotional attachment to AA. (See Love Bombing).
Grimreapaphobia – the fear among AAs that they will die if they leave AA.
Grinnace – a cross between a grin and a grimace; the forced smile one gets when listening to old-timer John’s rambling drunkalog for the five-hundredth time, or the mindless uttering and advice from a ‘Big Book’ thumping sponsor, or the incessant chants and slogans heard in and around meetings.
Group of Drunks (G.O.D.) – a proxy god for one to use until he/she is fully indoctrinated into believing in the AA God™. A person who questions the existence of a Higher Power™, is led to accept the AA group (group of drunks) itself as a god, once they admit their powerlessness. (See God™)
Higher Power – God™, or a proxy god such as a tree or a doorknob. (see God™)
Humility – an arrogant refusal to believe that anyone who questions stepper dogma might just have a point; assumption of the right to shout down people who disagree with you; boastfulness about your length of sobriety and spirituality; insufferable attitude of smugness and superiority, esp towards newcomers. (humanspirit)
Huxley, Aldous — writer, philosopher, thinker of high regard who almost certainly obtained LSD from the same source as Bill Wilson (see — Wilson, Bill) but almost certainly had little — if any — contact with him (often quoted as labeling Wilson “one of the greatest social architects of the 20th century” without a shred of evidence supporting the validity of said quotation by Susan Cheever [see Cheever, Susan above] & AAWS [ibid]. (Speedy)
Imislund, Clancy – leader of California’s The Pacific Group. (see Pacific Group)
Insanity – doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting different results. This applies to everything except failed AA and 12-step treatment, in which case you need to “keep coming back.”
“It’s Free” – often used argument that the fact that AA charges no membership fees makes it a valid program.
“It was meant to happen” – post hoc explanation of God’s logic, often heard in AA share sessions, on why He would allow such things as a DUI arrest or a death, to happen. (see Godpuppettry) (AndyM)
Kook Factor – the subjective degree of an AA’s craziness, as measured in such things as slogans, ad hominem attacks and delusion.
Lester, Greg – aka, “Truthseeker”, is a sometimes sober, occasionally meth-addled AA and attorney from Asuza, California; defense attorney for Lance Glock, and infrequent contributor the comment section of this blog. (See Glock, Lance)
“Living life on life’s terms” – a phrase meaning one should spend the greater part of each day in either AA meetings or AA service work instead of unproductive activities such as family, work or school. (Commonsense)
Lohanonymity – the type of anonymity practiced by celebrities such as Lindsay Lohan and Charlie Sheen, who publicize their affiliation with AA in order to manipulate public opinion, typically after a public meltdown or indiscretion, and before being sentenced by a judge.
Love Bombing – a deliberate showering of affection and attention toward a new person in AA. A common tactic among cults for lowering the defenses of prospective member. (See Pigeon)
Meditation – a technique to rid the mind of any individual thought or rational thinking. (See Prayer)
Mondotuna – aka, “JD”; aka, “cableguy”; aka, “Mr Guestperson.” An internet troll and former moderator of the Lifering forum, Mondotuna is a closet AA who uses alternate names to slander individuals and forms of recovery other than AA.
Moral Re-Armament (MRA) – revised name of The Oxford Group. See The Oxford Group.
” (the) most important person in the room” – term for which AAs refer to a person attending their first AA meeting. (See Pigeon)
“my experience” – term used by AAs as an excuse to not comment, and to turn a blind-eye, on the abuse and manipulation that takes place within AA — as in, “all I can tell you is my experience”; a common technique AAs use to pretend what happens in AA does not happen.
Ninety-day Wonder – a pejorative used by old-timers to describe a new AA member who has swallowed the AA kool-aid, thinks he/she knows everything, and will not shut up.
Ninety in Ninety – the suggestion (see suggestion) that a person go to ninety meeting in their first ninety days, in which time a person is indoctrinated and brainwashed.
Normie – a pejorative used to denote those who are not alcoholics, including those who quit on their own, because they are not real alcoholics. Used as a way creating special society of AA members. (See Real Alcoholic) (ezez)
“not properly working the program” – the excuse used by AAs for the 95% of members who go back to drinking. (See Spontaneous Remission)
One Stepper – A person who quits drinking, but does not work the 12-steps. (See Dry Drunk)
Open Mindedness – believing without question everything told to you within AA about AA, addiction and human psychology; while completely dismissing any outside opinion or information. Newly recruited members are encouraged to look at AA with “an open mind.”
Orange – aka, “Agent Orange”, is the writer, researcher and publisher of the online book “The Orange Papers“. A person who lets facts and historical accuracy get in the way of what AAs know is really the truth. 2) da Debil
“Out There” – The world of constant fear and danger that exists outside the rooms of AA. Anyone who goes “back out there” is assumed to have returned to destructive drinking and faces certain death unless they return to the rooms in a suitably chastened and penitent state. (AndyM)
(The) Oxford Group – a cult-like Christan movement founded by Frank Buchman, from which AA and the 12-step movement is derived. See Buchman, Frank.
(The) Pacific Group – among the largest and craziest of AA groups, where the deluded followers learn from the teachings of their guru Clancy I. (see Imislund, Clancy; Bock, Jim)
Personal Inventory – a listing of a person’s weaknesses and character flaws. Unlike a normal inventory, which includes both credits and liabilities, the AA inventory only lists an individual’s faults. It is part of the programming process, and is used to humble, degrade and tear a person down.
Pigeon – often used slang term sponsors use to to refer to newcomers and their sponsees.
Prayer – a way of telling God™ that the shortcomings He imposed on you as part of His divine plan, are getting in the way of your sobriety, and you would like Him to remove them ASAP. (see Meditation)
Preddictionation – the divine foreordaining of a person’s alcohol addiction; the belief alcoholics are born that way.
Program Parrot – an AA who cannot think on his/her own, and simply regurgitates what they hear in from other AAs.
Prospect – a potential AA who targeted and recruited into the group. (See Pigeon)
“Pulling a Dick” – colloquialism used to describe an act of plagiarism, securities fraud, infidelity, hallucinogenic drug use, channeling ghosts with a ouija board, or any of the other stunts routinely done by Bill Wilson.
Pump and Dump – 1) a form of stock fraud that was practiced by AA founder, Bill Wilson; 2) a type of 13th-stepping (See Stockbroker and Thirteenth-stepping)
Rarely – 95% of the time. An adverb recited from the ‘Big Book’ at the beginning of every meeting: “”RARELY have we seen a person fail, who has thoroughly followed our path.” Used to give the illusion of the program’s effectiveness, when actual statistics show more than nine out of ten people fail.
Recovering – term used to denote a person in the AA program. It’s used in present tense, as someone who enters into treatment will always be in recovery. A loaded word which helps the stepper understand that there is no exit strategy, and once one is an alcoholic, they always will be; and if they don’t continue with the program, they will wind up in jail, an institution, or dead.
‘Real’ Alcoholic – A person who can only get sober in AA. See Dry drunk.
Religious – spiritual. (See Spiritual)
Rigorous Honesty – 1) dishonesty and manipulation; 2) telling a lie with your fingers crossed; 3) habitual lying. (See Truthiness)
Serenity – the consequence of repressing natural human feelings and emotions, such as anger; 2) a delusional feeling of well-being.
Serenity Hornet – an AA who gets angry at anyone who questions or mocks AA dogma, or who points out the lack of effectiveness in AA and 12-step programs. (See Serenity Rant)
Serenity Rant – a raging lecture and/or tantrum by an AA when a person questions the dogma; typically peppered with accusations of resentment and anger toward the person to whom the rant is directed.
Shaming Ritual – receiving a shiny new “24-hour chip” in front of the rest of an AA group. Occurs when a person drinks after a long-term period of sobriety. Regardless of how much they drank, or of how long they had remained sober before, their sobriety date begins again at day one. Upon receipt of the chip, the shamed individual is told to go back and work the steps again, only with more honesty.
Sheenglish – a special dialect used by former 12-stepper Charlie Sheen. (Tracy Rigdon)
Silkworthless – the opinion in AA of any advancement in medical research and treatment, because it deviates from “The Doctor’s Opinion” in the ‘Big Book’.
Simple Program – a highly complicated set of ideas that requires a massive effort of intellectual contortion to accept. (humanspirit)
Slogabosity – the excessive use of AA slogans.
Sobriety – not just abstinence from drinking, but “a special state of Grace gained by working the Steps and maintaining absolute abstinence. It is characterized by feelings of Serenity and Gratitude. It is a state of living according to God’s will, not one’s own. It is sanity.” -from Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions.
“Some must die so that others may live” – a phrase meaning it is good that some people drink themselves to death, as this helps scare the shit out of those considering leaving AA. (Commonsense)
“Some people’s brain needs a good washing” – a shutdown slogan used by AAs when a newcomer points out the brainwashing techniques of AA.
Spiritual – religious. (See Religious)
Spiritual Awakening – the process of ridding oneself of all rational thought; 2) a really good belladonna trip (also works with mushrooms, angel dust and acid).
(The) Sponsorship Group – whacked out AA fundie group in Chatham, New Jersey; let by their even more whacked out guru, Jim Bock. (see Bock, Jim)
Spontaneous Remission Rate – the rate at which a person suffering from a disease will go into remission. The rate for alcoholism is approximately 5%, which happens to be (almost) the rate of remission for those who belong to AA. AA takes full credit for these cases as proof of its effectiveness, and discounts the remaining 95% by saying they do not properly work the program. (See “not properly working the program”)
(The) Spook Room – The room at Bill Wilson’s home where he and Lois set up a ouija board, and communicated with the spirit world.
Steptomaniac – People who are so insulated that when they try to engage anyone outside of AA, their lack of perspective forces them to unselfconsciously say shit. They say shit that only the truly brainwashed can understand; 2) People who have no idea how they sound to sober, critical thinkers. (Tracy Rigdon)
“stick with the winners” – AA slogan given to newcomers as advice on who to avoid in AA, with a “winner” being a person who has suspended his/her disbelief, and no longer questions the absurdity of the program. It helps in the not thinking process.
Stinkin’ Thinkin’; also, Stinking Thinking – 1) thinking; 2) a keen insight into the obvious; 3) any reasonable question of the AA dogma; 4) a blog.
Stockbroker – a huckster who was never licensed to sell stocks, never bought or sold a stock, never had a client, and was never an employee of a member of a stock exchange or any securities firm.
Suggestion – a piece of advice, typically given by an old-timer or an AA’s sponsor, framed as a false dichotomy – as in, “unless you want to die of drinking, I suggest you do what I say.”
Step Child – a person who grew up around a 12-step program, and has been brainwashed from birth to believe the dogma; 2) the product of thirteenth-stepping.
Steptitude – a mental state involving beliefs and feelings toward the teachings of AA. A person whose life is governed primarily by the ‘Big Book’ and his/her AA group, and who often preaches but rarely questions the dogma, is considered to have a high degree of steptitude.
Surrender – the relinquishment of your own thoughts, beliefs, values, goals, desires, ideas, self, and life to “The Program”. (msrobinmm)
Thatcher, Ebby – Bill Wilson’s mentor, commonly referred to as “Bill Wilson’s Sponsor”. Ebby helped lead Bill W to the same spiritual awakening that had sobered him up, before he subsequently drank himself to death.
Thirteenth-Stepping – The act of seducing new and vulnerable members of AA with manipulation and abuse of trust.
Tool’s Box – Helen Wynn’s vagina. See Wynn, Helen.
Toole, Michael – thief, former federal judge, and member of AA who used his membership in the fellowship as a reason to reduce his sentence, after pleading guilty to taking bribes and evading his taxes.
“too smart for the program” – a shutdown phrase for those who question the illogic or contradictions of AA. Derived from the slogan, “none are too dumb dumb for the program, but some are too smart.” There are variations of the slogan like, “well, you’re too smart for me” or “I thought I knew everything, too.”
“trust me” – “fuck you”
Truthiness – 1) truth that comes from the gut, not books; 2) the quality of preferring concepts or facts one wishes to be true, rather than concepts or facts known to be true. (See Rigorous Honesty)
Twelve Traditions – the guidelines which AA and all AA groups follow, unless it is inconvenient or not in their best interest, in which case they are blatantly ignored.
Two-hatter – An AA who also plays the role of a therapist or social worker, and uses his or her position to manipulate others into AA, and into believing the AA dogma; regardless of the fact this is blatant conflict of interest, and goes against AA’s own traditions. (see Twelve Traditions).
Up With People – the second craziest group to be spun off from The Oxford Group; a cult-like singing troupe of young, right-wing fundamentalists.
White-light Experience - Bill Wilson’s drug-induced, hallucinating encounter with God™, from which an entire spiritual recovery movement is based. (See Belladonna)
Wilson, Bill – founder of Alcoholics Anonymous
Wilson, Lois – Bill Wilson’s wife.
Wynn, Helen – (One of) Bill Wilson’s mistress(es), for who he left 10% of his estate.
X-Stepper – a person who has found their way out AA.
Zero-stepping – the act of talking someone out of going to AA in the first place. (see Fourteenth-stepping) (Martha)