Source: “Breaking Bad” and Jesse’s Ego
I’m fresh off another book-signing earlier today. I was.reviewing previous.blog posts and came across this one.
I have completed the movie script entitled “The Unhappy Hour” and am nearly done converting the movie script into a comic-book script. My partner, Stephen Craig, and I, are going to create a comic book and need an artist to handle the artwork piece. Ideally the person lives in the Red Wing, MN area but with the magic of online communications, it’s not a requirement. Payment terms are negotiable.
Interested candidates should email me at email@example.com or text me at 651-764-2223 with a link to your website and/or files with examples of your completed artwork and if published or used in a commercial enterprise, please provide details.
After watching a documentary about the darker aspects of Alcoholics Anonymous, “13th Step”, and taking into account my own experiences with AA, I am no longer sold on that organization’s 12-step program as the best way to cure a drinking problem. In “13th Step”, a former AA member named Monica Richardson explores the numerous problems with the organization formed in 1935 by Dr. Bob Smith and Bill Watson (I won’t get into the debate about whether they or three other people who helped these two should be considered the true founders of AA). In general, although well meaning, AA isn’t for all people trying to get or remain sober because of:
- a highly religious doctrine
- Group-based recovery method (not good if you’re extremely shy or depressed)
- Courts’ practice of forcing some violent and sexual predators to attend AA meetings unbeknownst to most or all of the AA chapter’s members
- Danger that some longtime AA members will sexually and/or financially prey on newbies
- The low (5 to 10%) recovery rate of its members
I’m not saying AA can’t work for you but one, especially young females, need to be wary of joining a local AA chapter. If you join AA, seriously consider using it in conjunction with other treatment methods. Also, and I’m biased because I wrote it, but “Overcome Any Personal Obstacle, including Alcoholism, by Understanding Your Ego” is a God-inspired creation that I truly believe it can help anyone with any kind of addiction, especially alcohol or drugs. More info at http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/leewriter. Or you can order a copy (printed or ePub) on Amazon.
Okay, here we go. Five alternatives to Alcoholics Anonymous
- SMART — uses a cognitive, behavioral psychology approach to recovery, meets in groups, both in person and online. There are four major points: 1) enhancing and maintaining motivation to stop drinking; 2) coping with urges; 3) managin g thoughts, feelings and behaviors (problem solving); 4) lifestyle balance. Unlike AA, SMART recognizes the need for some in recovery to use appropriate medication to treat medical conditions such as depression, insomnia, etc. The pros: it’s based on proven psychological, scientific methods, it’s free and everyone is accepted, there is empathy from other members, and as stated previously, appropriate medications are acceptable. The major drawbacks are their meeting groups aren’t as widespread as AA’s, the meeting facilitators aren’t professional and there’s little spiritual support.
- The Sinclair Method — opiate-blocker-based program that uses medications such as naltrexone to help problem drinkers reduce cravings for alcohol. Those trying to stop drinking essentially drink themselves sober. By taking the opiate-blocker an hour before they consume alcohol, the medication negates the euphoric feelings normally produced by alcohol. Eventually the problem drinker stops wanting to drink because they no longer receive the positive reinforcement from alcohol. It’s got an 80% success rate and is popular approach in Scandinavian countries such as Finland and it is fairly common in the U.K. The reason it’s not more prevalent in the U.S. is that goes against grain of abstinence approach espoused by 12-step programs such as AA’s.
- Declinol — herbal medication with major ingredient being Diadzin, derived from the Kudzu Root that has been used the Chinese for over 1,000 years to cure craving for alcohol. It also has a well-balanced blend of nutrients to replace the nutrients that many problem drinkers have a deficiency of due to their drinking. The Journal of Addiction Research & Recovery reports that every participant reported a lower score on their post AUDIT scores after taking the drug. Numerous positive product reviews can be found on Amazon.
- Moderation Management — this program is NOT for chronic drinkers or recovered alcoholics trying to maintain abstinence. It is designed for those who have experienced mild to moderate alcohol-related problems. The goal is for program participants to drink in moderation and to achieve a more balanced, improved lifestyle. Suggested reading is a book entitled “Moderate Drinking: The Moderation Management Guide For People Who Want to Reduce Their Drinking and Take Control Now!” by PhD. named Marc Frederick Kern.
- SOS (Secular Organization for Sobriety or Save Our Selves) — developed by James Christopher, an ex-AA member who did not agree with the overtly religious nature of AA. The Suggested Guidelines in their program are centered around the Sobriety Priority, which is to maintain abstinence no matter what. Each member is responsible for their own decisions on whether to use or not. They believe abstinence is possible without using supernatural or superstitious means.
That’s it. Five alternatives to AA to becoming and staying sober. Or five methods you can use in conjunction with 12-step programs to achieve a sober lifestyle. The key to making any of these programs work for you is that you’ve to admit you have a problem and you have truly, deep down want to give up alcohol. And as you’ll see if you purchase my book, another vital step is getting control of your ego-generated pride. Your pride will fight your recovery efforts every step of the way but you can win the battle with your ego and with your addiction to alcohol. Good luck to everyone.
NOTE: To see my YouTube video on the five best AA alternatives, go to https://youtu.be/yFoWVic-ymg. The only problem is that this video covers only the roughly second half of the content. The software I used to record the content had a five-minute time limit so I had to record two videos and when I tried to upload the first video, I got an error message on YouTube saying it was a duplicate.
In the introductory blog, we laid out the layout of our proposed miniature-course. Now it’s time to look at what the humorous message boards between holes might/will look like.
Between 1st green and 2nd tee:
“Did you hear the Minnesota Twins signed Chewbacca to a minor-league contract? If he does well and makes it to the Majors, he might be Wookie of the Year.”
Between 2nd green and 3rd tee:
“In miniature golf, you don’t want to boldly go where no golfer has gone before.”
Between 3rd green and 4th tee:
“Captain, miniature golf is totally illogical…and more fun than a barrel of Vulcan monkeys.”
Between 4th green and 5th tee:
“Holy black, mysterious holes, Batman, there’s danger ahead. Batman: Not to worry, Boy Wonder. I’m wholly prepared to navigate the perils of deep space. Grab onto my Bat Cape, if you must, but hands off the Bat Belt.”
Between #5 green and #6 tee:
“Captain, I can’t change the laws of physics. But I may be able to help you with your putting stroke.”
Between #6 green and #7 tee:
“As the Irish Jedi Knights like to say, ‘May the farce be with you’.”
Between #7 green and #8 tee:
“Houston, we have a problem. I can’t find my ball.”
Between #8 green and #9 tee:
“It was horrible. The giant alien did a complete cavity search. I had two cavities and one chipped tooth.”
Stephen Craig and I have designed a space-themed nine-hole miniature-golf course that we are soliciting bids for. Our course is going to be named Lee & Stephen’s Dancing with the Pars Miniature-Golf Experience. Our original 18-hole course design was simply too extravagant and would have required too much money. And we discovered that our planned site, the former Red Wing Pottery Mall, has only enough available space for nine holes. So we will start with nine holes and add another nearby nine holes if the business is as profitable as our projections indicate.
Here is the the proposed design:
Hole #1: “Jump to Really, Really Fast Speed” — par 4, dogleg left with metal (or hard plastic) replicas of asteroids taking up 95% of the fairway; on the right edge of the fairway is a ramp that leads up to an elevated plateau and then a ramp that drops sharply is on the other side (sign that reads “Really, Really Fast Speed Launcher”. Balls coming off the ramp speed down fairway, strike a wood embankment that deflects the ball towards and eventually onto the green. Tee shots that don’t go onto ramp forces player to bank 2nd shot off the left-hand board to get around the asteroid belt. Their 3rd shot can be hit off the same wooden embankment that the “Really, Really Fast Speed Launcher” leads directly to but the angle won’t be perfect so their 3rd shot will likely not end up on the half-moon shaped green.
Plaque between green and tee #2 reads “Did you hear the Minnesota Twins signed Chewbacca to a minor-league contract? If he does well and makes it to the Majors, he might be Wookie of the Year.”
Hole #2: “Planet Pinball Wizard” — par 3 with small opening leading to a gauntlet of the eight planets (between 1’ and 2’ high) plus Pluto. The metal/hard plastic planets are set up to that a shot hitting the right edge of Earth will ricochet across and hit Mars, Venus, Mercury, Uranus, Neptune, Jupiter, Saturn, and Pluto before rolling up onto a perfectly circular green. Two “black hole” hazards guard the green. Shots hit into either sand trap are penalized one stroke and played as they lie.
Plaque between green and tee #3 reads “Captain, a round of miniature golf is utterly illogical…and more fun than a barrel of Vulcan monkeys.”
Hole #3: “Transcending Saturn (and its moons)” — par 4 with replica of Saturn and its moons taking up entire width of the fairway. To get past it, player must hit tee shot into one of two launching areas that have a spring-loaded launcher that looks like a tiny spaceship. Green resembles the surface of Earth’s moon.
Plaque between green and tee #4 reads “In miniature golf, you don’t want to go boldly where no miniature golfer has gone before.”
Hole #4: “Let’s Do Launch Real Soon” — par 5 that spirals upward from tee to green around a replica of a space shuttle on a launching pad. In between the rising, twisting fairways are two plateaus. If shot isn’t hit hard enough, ball comes back down to the player. If it’s hard too hard, it falls off the fairway into a net and shot must be replayed from point of contact. To get back down to the next hole, player can take either a metal slide or steps.
Plaque at the bottom, in between the stairs and slide, reads “Good luck. Hope you’re having an ‘out of this world’ experience.”
Hole #5: “Ancient Aliens” — par 3, features two pyramids, a sphinx and Stonehenge (all between 1’ and 2’ high) that stand between tee and green. A little green alien (plastic) sits in meditative position on top of each of the hazards. Player can either hit shot onto a ramp that winds around the obstacles or they can try to use banked fairway to go around them. Green is triangular with a cup that’s also a triangle. Gold lights projected up from the floor and converge at a height of ten feet to make the green resemble a small pyramid. Alternatively, canvas tent supported by metal poles form a three-dimensional pyramid with a door in the middle of the front of the green. Strobe lights add to the ancient-alien-pyramid vibe. “Walk Like An Egyptian” plays over speakers mounted on inside of the enclosed green.
Plaque between holes reads: “Holy black mysterious holes, Batman, there’s danger ahead. Batman; Don’t worry, Boy Wonder. I’m wholly prepared to navigate the perils of deep space with nary a false step. Take hold of my cape if you must but hands off the Bat Belt.”
Hole #6: “A Holy Hell of Holes to Test Your Holiness…or is that Wholesomeness?” — par 5, seventy-five yards long, double dogleg (left, then right). Players can take safer route and go around the minefield of black holes that stand in the middle of the fairway or gamble and aim for the WORMHOLE that stands in the midst of the black holes. Shots that fall into the black hole disappear into a hidden tube. Player penalized one stroke and must grab another ball from a rack that stands beside the hole. Shots that fall into the WORMHOLE go into a hidden tube that goes under the fairway almost all the way to the green. Ball pops out within a yard of the green. If player opts to go around the first set of obstacles, the second shot must go around another black-hole type hazard: a pit surrounded by a black shower curtain that encloses the pit. Inside there are funhouse mirrors, strobe lights, miniature dinosaurs, toy volcanoes and mist from dry ice. To escape the pit, player must avoid the dinosaurs and volcanoes and roll back up one of two ramps leading back onto the fairway. Speakers mounted on mirrors play either “Dark Side of the Moon” or “Break on Through to the Other Side”.
Plaque between holes: “As the Irish say, may the farce with you.”
Hole #7: “Giant-Sized BLT, Anyone?” — par 3, elevated tee with sharp drop off; undulating, banked fairway that allows player to curve around killer tomatoes sculpture and then a monster resembling the monster from “Alien” movie franchise.
Plaque between holes: “Houston, we have a problem. I can’t find my ball.”
Hole #8: “Sea What You’ve Done Now?” — par 4, waterfalls line both sides of the fairway; tiny Loch Ness-like monsters and sea turtles with flying saucers mounted on their backs float in the water, dry ice creates foggy vibe. “Swimming prohibited due to sea serpent infestation” sign on edge of water. A fountain with jellyfish and octopus figurines/sculptures guards the green on the left side.
Plaque between holes: “It was horrible. This eight-foot extraterrestrial did a cavity search. I had two cavities and one chipped tooth.”
Hole #9: “Psst, Buddy, Got a Light (Saber)?” — par 5 with space-themed video-game arcade machines — “Galaxian”, “Galaga”, “Star Wars” — scattered across the fairway. First obstacle is a painting of the Milky Way. After that: a gauntlet of lightsabers that rise and fall like tomahawks. To the right of the hole, almost to the green, a 50” flat-screen TV plays the music video by Dirty Monkey featuring the Stormtroopers.
We will soon be conducting a Kickstarter campaign. If you know someone who is looking to invest in a cutting-edge miniature-golf concept course, please refer them to our website. We hope to build a prototype of one or two holes for promotional purposes. Pictures of the prototypes will be posted on this site.
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