Friday, March 19, 2010

Oh So Negative

Our family belongs to a number of groups and associations who routinely do some kind of charity outreach activities. In addition to those groups, I have succumbed to peer pressure (Ha!) from my daughter so I give blood once in awhile so she will love me more. My kid is a certifiable vampire and LOVES to give blood and gives it as often as she can. She somehow becomes more energized when they start to drain her? People like her that hang around blood banks make me a tad nervous, so I always eat a bunch of garlic before these trips.

For me, I help out where I can. If I have time and the blood wagon is in the area, I will stop by and let them tap me like a keg. I am not afraid of giving blood, but sometimes the time required turns me off. Even if there is no line in front of you, it takes at least an hour to check blood iron, answer the obligatory lifestyle questions, and then that magic time on the gurney.

Given my personality, especially if I give blood at a High School or University location, I try to be fairly up-beat if it looks like a couple of the younger folk are first-timers and tense. I usually make a big deal out of what kind of ‘hand squeezy’ ball they try to give me. I prefer the foam ones in the shape of either the human brain or the world. Yes, I am sure there is a Freudian implication of some sort there – but at least it wasn’t a HEART!?

You can guess by the blog title that my blood is Type O Negative. With that type, In the world of blood, I am a ROCK STAR! Donors with O Negative blood represent only about 6% of the blood supply in the U.S. In an emergency, when there is no time to match blood, an O negative donor can donate to anyone. So that makes me fairly popular every 56 days by anybody with a rubber bag, a needle, and oh yeah - the obligatory end-game cookie!

If you have never given blood, I would encourage you to try it at least once. If altruism won’t convince you then maybe the little donor card they give you will. Somewhere in the Vampire accounting office, they keep statistics on how much blood you have donated. If at a later time in life, you need a blood transfusion, the blood bank will give you the same amount back free if you need it. It has been awhile since I checked but a unit of Red blood cells in many hospitals can be a whopping $200 or more. If a gallon of milk was priced in the same range it would set you back around $1600. (Ouch and Yuuch – all at the same time?) If you're still bloody interested, check out this link for some ‘Salient’ facts!

Ok, I know my 56 days must be up again, because this week alone I have received 3 phone calls from my various bloodsucker paparazzi. Once they bandage up my arm, I hope I will have the strength to carry on blogging. Oh don’t you fret … I’ll load up on garlic shrimp before I get tapped – I’ll be STRONG enough to make your browser cry - Whew!!

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