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Annie C., "Annie the Cop Fighter"
C., New York City.
(p. 514 in 2nd edition.)
Annie came to A.A. in
April of 1947, at the age of sixty-seven. She was a "scrub
lady," poor, and uneducated. She lived in a tenement house
on First Avenue.
Her husband had left her,
taking the children with him. At one point he invited
her to move back with him and she did. She says that by
then the oldest boy was married, and the youngest was
studying to become a policeman. "Brother!"
She had her first drink
at age 31. She fought with police and was frequently arrested
for being drunk and disorderly. She cleaned rooms in a
hotel, but got drunk on an occupant's liquor and fell
asleep on his bed. She got fired. At one point she was
drinking with the boys on the Bowery.
At her first meeting she
met Nancy F. ("The Independent Blonde") who reports "She
laughed and said 'You're jealous of me because I've had
a few drinks and you can't have any.'" Nancy replied,
"You're so right."
She had a slip, after
which she went to High Watch Farm. When she returned Nancy
suggested she take the fifth step, either with Dr. Silkworth
or with a priest. She chose to do it with a priest. (The
priest was probably also an A.A. member.)
She and the priest met
at Nancy's apartment. Nancy made coffee and suggested
that Annie attend the meeting on 58th Street when they
were finished, then left. When Annie arrived at the meeting
she seemed clearly relieved. Even though Nancy had told
her this was not a confession, she was just to tell him
her story, she did make a confession. She told the priest:
"Father, I'll tell you everything, but don't ask me how
She was a very simple,
uninhibited woman. She cursed a lot when she spoke, but
then would look at a priest in the audience say, "Excuse
me, Father, but I'm trying to be careful."
Nancy was a hairdresser,
and when Annie came to the beauty shop she would charge
her a dollar "because I never wanted her to think I just
gave her anything because she was very proud." Annie later
went to another beauty shop and when they charged her
six dollars she said, "Hell, I can get it done for a buck
up on Park Avenue."
She is said to have had
the time of her life in A.A. She had nothing, but she
was sober, and she was having a ball. She was happy as
Annie died when she was