The Picture on Top

edited to say I’ve changed the picture, but I’ll leave the story

The picture on the banner is a picture of my windshield. My wife took it randomly a few years ago. I think it’s snow that has frozen to ice and then had more snow fall on top. The ice is cracked, and the windshield is showing through a little bit. I was scrolling through the pictures on my computer to find one to put up there. I never really think of that picture. I don’t know why she took it, and it just got loaded on to the computer with the rest that were on the camera at time. When I saw it, in this context, I knew I wanted to use it. I really like the way the banner cuts it kind of long and narrow.

Anyone who has heard my story has heard one of my more harrowing moments when I drove home from school extremely drunk, in a huge snow storm. I stopped at a gas station, called my sponsor (this was in the 1980s, no cell phones), told her I didn’t know where I was. She asked me what I saw around me, and I described this a little bit. I got quickly tired of that, hung up, went back to my car, and passed out. She sent someone from the program out to find me in the storm, guessing where I was from what I had described. I don’t know, maybe I gave some telling detail, or maybe I didn’t. I know that my car was quickly covered in snow, in an alley, between a gas station and dry cleaner or something, and that I was unconscious. I know that the guy she sent found me, and drove me back through the storm to her house where I kept her and several other AA folks up most of the night trying to escape her house and throw myself in a pond to drown.

Oy.

That is one time that the program and the people in it may quite literally have saved my life. And I have to tell that is not the last time I had a drink. I went to the hospital for the first time (before that, I had not been hospitalized for drinking YET), came out of the hospital and drank again. I also tell it that I remember, years ago, when George McGovern’s daughter Susan fell down drunk in the snow and froze to death. That could have been me.

So I really like that picture, and it seemed to have been taken for this blog. I couldn’t have staged it better. Every time I see it I remember. I think of myself in that car and out of that car and that it was not by my own doing that I made it through.

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