In a meeting in Costa Mesa one Saturday morning we were talking about the lengths we were willing to go to get sober. Old Russ, 40 years on the program, raised his hand and said "I remember the lengths that I would go to get drunk"! He began to talk in his very deep voice relating that during the last stages of his drinking he had chronic diarrhea and was in a local gas station restroom. While sitting there in contemplation of his day the first stages of the shakes hit. He started to think about how much money he had and did he have enough for a short dog. He recalled that he had two quarters, two dimes and two pennies, .72 cents. He only needed .69 cents for a short dog. As he rose he grabbed his trousers and the pockets turned inside out, he heard the change hit the floor and then he heard two splashes. He began to pray that it was the two pennies, but when he picked up the money he found that it was the two dimes that had taken the plunge into the toilet. As he looked down into the bowl he began to say to himself, "No Way, I won't put my hand into that for twenty cents". Just as he finished the shakes hit him again only harder and for a longer duration. He looked back down into the bowl and once again exclalimed"I WON'T PUT MY HAND IN THERE FOR NO TWENTY CENTS"! Again the shakes hit him hard, he knew that he wouldn't be able to hustle the twenty cents before he was in real bad shape. He looked back on more time into the bowl and said "I won't put my hand in there for twenty cents", at which time he grabbed one of the quarters and threw it into the bowl saying"but I will for 45 cents"!
When the laughter stopped he said, "that's how far I was willing to go to get drunk, I've been willing to go a lot farther for my sobriety, how about you"?