From the September 2009 magazine.

It Was a Dark and Stormy Night

A long-timer shares about his introduction to AA in New York City

I had my first experience with AA on a dark and stormy night in New York City at about 3 A.M. The bars had closed for the night, and I was trying to find the entrance to the subway in order to return to the rooming house where I lived in Brooklyn. I was very drunk, as usual, and couldn't find the entrance.

Suddenly, a fellow appeared--out of nowhere, it seemed. He was an entertainer in his late 20s (I was 22 at the time), and he was returning home. He took me home with him and sobered me up. Then he said he had a little quiz for me: It was from the pamphlet with 40 questions pertaining to problems with alcohol. I was in so much denial that I answered "yes" to only two questions.

-- JIM B.

Portland, Ore.

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