The Legend of Joe and Charlie - Page 2

By Kristen McGuiness 11/15/11
An AA friendship that started 30 years ago led to a clear, concise interpretation of the Big Book. So who were the men behind the movement?
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According to DeLuca, “Their impact really is phenomenal. One of the organizers for a recent AA conference told me that AA quietly considers Joe and Charlie to have had the most significant impact on AA in the last 30 years."

For Felicia, the impact of hearing two old Southern man talk about a book that was written well before her time still resonates in her life today. “I guess just hearing how I can relate to people who are so different from me always brings me back to that singleness of purpose,” she says. “It helps me to remember that we are alcoholics, just trying to get well. And for me, my wellness has been found in the Big Book. I am extremely grateful for that, and for the people like Joe and Charlie who are able to really illuminate that and still keep their humor about them.”

AA quietly considers Joe and Charlie to have had the most significant impact on AA in the last 30 years.

It doesn’t hurt that Joe and Charlie are incredibly amusing (you won’t hear a lot of speakers cracking jokes about the lacks of cows talking about their sexual problems). ”They’re funny,” Peter says. “They have this folksy charm that helps the medicine go down, which has always been what I love about AA. We can talk about these serious matters and still laugh at ourselves.”

Kristen McGuiness is a freelance writer and regular contributor to The Fix who wrote previously about the 13th step and dreaming about drinking, among many other topics. She is the author of 51/50: The Magical Adventures of a Single Life

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