From the December 2017 magazine.

Deal me in

It wasn’t who won or lost, it was about the stories the old-timers told

I got sober at a clubhouse in the San Fernando Valley called The Nest. At the time, when you entered The Nest the main AA meeting room was to your left and an overflow area and the kitchen were immediately ahead. The “Half Measures” game room with a pool table and card table was to the right.

Most times of the day, if there wasn’t a meeting going on, several old-timers would be seated at the card table playing pinochle. I came from a pinochle-playing family and was immediately drawn to the game. I was an honorable kibitzer and I hoped I would be asked to play, but I was a newcomer and these were men and women with 10, 20, 30, or more years. I didn’t really expect to get to play.

-- Tom S

Cottonwood, Arizona, USA

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