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"On His Way"
Horace R. (Popsy) M., New York City.
(p. 375, 1st edition.)
Popsy entered A.A. in September
He was described as a charming
Virginia gentleman. His wife, Sandy, had been a nurse. They
lived in a fashionable home on exclusive Sutton Place in
According to his story he
was drinking heavily by the age of fifteen and sixteen.
Then he decided to leave school. The next few years were
spent in civil engineering work, travel, sports, and idleness,
and he seemed not to have serious difficulties because of
By the time he married and
sailed for France during World War I, alcohol had begun
to play a big part in his life. Soon he knew he was an alcoholic,
but would admit it to no one.
Sometime after he was divorced
from his first wife, he stopped being a social drinker and
became a periodic drunkard, with sprees lasting from three
days to three weeks, and the dry intervals lasting from
three weeks to four months.
He married again by the
age of thirty-five and had a beautiful home. He had a kind
understanding, lovely wife; a partnership in a firm he had
helped to found years before; a more than comfortable income;
many luxuries and friends; opportunity to follow his interests
and hobbies; a love of his work; pride in his success; great
health; optimism; and hope.
But he had a growing, gnawing
fear about his drinking. Soon he slipped to the bottom,
sleeping in cheap hotels, flop houses, police stations and
once in a doorway. (Since they appear to have been a wealthy
family, this may have been because his wife had kicked him
out, or he didn't quite make it home due to his condition.)
He was sent many times to
the alcoholic ward of a hospital. Sometimes he could pull
himself together and work, but not for long. He became helpless,
When he finally found A.A.,
he found that his intelligence, instead of drawing him further
away from spiritual faith brought him closer to it. He was
finally able to see that God could do an eminently more
capable job of running the universe than he. At last he
believed he was on his way.
It was Popsy and his wife
who took Marty M. ("Women Suffer Too") to her first meeting,
on April 15, 1939. His sister-in-law had given the manuscript
of the Big Book to Dr. Tiebout. Marty was a patient of Dr.
Tiebout at Blythewood. Dr. Tiebout handed her a card with
an address and told her to take the five o'clock train into
New York, grab a cab, and go to the address on the card.
These people would take her to a meeting. Marty was astounded
to find this charming older couple, in this elegant home.
Sandy put Marty immediately at ease. They had also invited
for dinner a handsome, curly black-haired, blue-eyed young
A.A. Irish man named Brian as Marty's escort for the evening.
They had an elegant dinner, after which the four of them
caught the subway to Brooklyn across the East River.