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Jan 26, 2011

Thoughts on the Third Step

My experience with the Third Step started with a decision to take the advice of my sponsor and the people in the group. They were in touch with a higher power than I was, since they were sober and I wasn’t. So in those days it was a matter of going to meetings, sharing, hanging out afterwards, going to social events, getting a sponsor, working the steps, and so on — in short, following the suggestions of the program. (more…)

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Jan 16, 2011

Help Me Research “Peaceful Places”

I am working on a new project for Menasha Ridge Press, who published my 60 Hikes book. The book is called Peaceful Places – Portland. They’ve already got titles in the series on San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York.

So here’s what I seek from readers: suggestions of peaceful places around Portland. The categories are Day/Overnight, Enchanting Walks, Historic Sites, Museums/Galleries, Outdoor Habitats, Parks and Gardens, Quiet Tables, Reading Rooms, Scenic Vistas, Shops and Services, Spiritual Enclaves, and Urban Surprises.

So email me some ideas, or post them as comments here, and if you tell me something I don’t know, and it makes the book, I’ll thank you in the Acknowledgements and enter your name in a drawing for a signed book.

Thanks!

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Jan 11, 2011

Why can’t we let go?

Written to a sponsee:

“The reason you can’t let go of your behaviors and resentments is that they serve a purpose and give you apparent, short-term relief, coupled with a type and level of pain that you are used to, can manage to some extent, and which you have begun to think of as your birthright. Or birthwrong. In the long term you know this isn’t working, but in the short term you have no idea how you can change from a familiar pain to something unknown. That’s where faith comes in; it can act as the bridge beyond all the “yeah-buts” that your mind puts up in defense of the ego — which, ironically, is the source of all your pain.

I say this because it’s true of every human being, not you in particular. Maybe not the Dalai Lama or Jesus.”

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Jan 03, 2011

New Year’s Resolution

(written to a friend)

You make some fine pledges, my friend, and bring me no small amount of joy — not just with your too-occasional writings but with the recent news of your pending arrival in P-town. They say we put our intentions out to the universe and it responds in its own time and way, and while I didn’t realize it would take 14 years and a job to get you out here — I thought perhaps a promise of golf and whiskey would have done the trick — I shall nonetheless be happy to entertain you. And be entertained by you. And wallow in your considerable presence.

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Dec 26, 2010

Portland Tribune Interview

I was interviewed for the “In Character” column in the Portland Tribune. Interesting experience; the guy actually writes the article “live,” right there at the breakfast table. Enjoy.

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