Mark Masserant
I began writing articles for recovery magazines in January of 2016. My work has appeared in I Love Recovery Café, Step 12 Magazine, InRecovery Magazine, Sober Nation and Recovery illustrated, as well as other websites. I love to add humor when writing about my thinking problems and memorable experiences in recovery, and to share some of the little miracles that kept me on the path. I also am a poet and a stained glass artist, working primarily with lamp shades. I attend meetings regularly, am married and live near Ann Arbor, Michigan. I’ve been continuously clean and sober since March 14th, 1987, and am active in my recovery. I hope I never forget to be grateful for my second chance at life.

Pink Elephants, But No Snakes in My Boots ((A little tango with denial) – Mark Masserant

Yikes! It was the third time this week, and it was still Tuesday. “Dude, you’d better get off the booze.” It didn’t matter where Dishonest John went—it followed him everywhere. Dammit, at least his bowling team was supposed to be on his side, wasn’t it? Sheesh! He pointed at a few nearby barflies in protest. “Whoa, now! What about them?” His familiar Budweiser accent boomed, rattling the establishment’s stemware. “Get off my back! I ain’t that bad!” After the outburst, he snatched his bottle and slipped back into his comfort zone directly across from the barmaid and his blurry reflection in the tavern mirror. “… Ain’t that bad…,” he grumbled to anyone who would listen. Meanwhile, legions of dipsomaniacs who populate bars and easy chairs everywhere are singing the same old tune. Many will succumb to despair if they don’t cease their deadly dance with denial. Twelve Step Recovery shops… Continue reading

Somebody Else: From Wannabe to Spinach to Kryptonite to Recovery – By Mark Masserant

Wannabe  I always wanted to be somebody else, right out of the chute. The notion sprouted in my head when I was a young boy—I wished I was my cousin. The one who lived on a farm with umpteen brothers and sisters, and tons of farm animals, too. Fun and excitement were routine at his house; the lucky bum had it made.  All I had was two crummy sisters and a mongrel dog that liked to hug my leg. At least the dang mutt was happy. I had even loftier goals as second grade approached—I dreamt of being the kid that all the girls adored. I don’t know what I would’ve done with all of them, but that’s who I wanted to be. A little Don Juan with Elvis Presley eyes and moves and a Mickey Mouse lunchbox. I wouldn’t have to pull pony tails and dash away to get… Continue reading

Not Your Classic 12th Step Call; Grrr-Attitude Problem – By Mark Masserant 

Some are sicker than others and Crazy Paul’s first name was a heads-up for the newcomers in the rooms. No other warnings were necessary—as soon as they listened to him babble for a couple of minutes, they knew his tip didn’t go to the top. Crazy attended meetings in our neck of the woods while he sweated out another court date, the by-product of the latest of a handful of DUI’s he collected around the Midwest. The prior cases he picked up forced him into a few geographics, but they produced the same results. Accordingly, wherever he went, there he was—geography wasn’t the problem. He swore it was a conspiracy, of course. They were all after him.  Hence, his travelling drunk-driving show had swerved into our town, seeking refuge. To nobody’s surprise, he infracted again and spent a grueling night in our county jail, or the “Hooterville Hotel” as he… Continue reading

The Great Right Now – By Mark Masserant

  Outside noisy. Inside empty-Chinese proverb “Welcome to the Here and Now,” he said, then winked and sipped his coffee, awaiting my response. The sage but puzzling remark was followed by a mischievous grin and eyes so penetrating they unmasked me. The Whiz sensed we were talking long-distance—I was trying to see through the cloud of me and my ten thousand things while he spoke with a simplicity too abstract for me to grasp. I didn’t know it and couldn’t help it, but it was all me, me and more of me. That was the problem—this self-obsessed junior grasshopper wasn’t all there. “What the hell is he talking about? The Here and Now?  Is this another Timothy Leary moment?” I wondered, alluding to the wacky LSD pioneer from the Sixties. It was philosophical gibberish to me—something from a bumper sticker on a makeshift Socrates dummy at a psychedelic toga party,… Continue reading

Detox My Socks Off – Mark Masserant

  An unforgettable week on pins and needles unfolded while I waited for a bed in a Detox unit after my last drunk, but I rode it out. Things at my house were a little brittle. The treatment center I went to was filled to capacity, so I was returned home after my evaluation until space became available. They gave me a heartfelt ‘Hang in there!’ and a handshake to go, along with a fistful of pamphlets. My wife didn’t say a word. ‘Just my luck,’ I thought as I wandered off into the darkness of the night and my life. “We’re so sorry—it shouldn’t be long. Four or five days at the most,” they assured me. Still, it was no sure thing I’d make it back once I hit the bricks. “Remember– call if you need help,” they offered, but that was unlikely—I knew me. What’s worse, they forgot to… Continue reading