03 May 2008

A quart low

So late this morning both Lovuhmylife Seraphim and I went down to the shopping center next to Lovett's Hardware, where a little 'carnival' of sorts was taking place. A fundraiser for the sugar refinery explosion back in February. Present in the parking lot was a Red Cross Bloodmobile. As promised, our plan was to part with another pint's worth of pulmonary payload.

But yours truly forgot to do something. I think they call it "eating." Okay, okay, so I slept in and skipped breakfast. For shame, Tal! Anyhoo, our agenda was for us to partake of lunch after we finished donating. That plan changed after we observed a little crisis in the Bloodmobile. A guy evidently went into a hypoglycemic shock of some kind, had some convulsions, and passed out. They were yelling and trying to bring him to. Yipe!

Now I've never had problems with giving blood. I fill that bag quickly, if I may toot my own vein. But all the times I've donated, it's been on a full stomach. I didn't want to chance passing out, or some other complication due to a lack of sustenance thus far today.

So we left and went to eat lunch (the Red Cross lady graciously took our completed forms and filed 'em away 'till we came back). And, after a nice and filling meal, we returned. When we stepped back into the Bloodmobile, who was there but our Congressman, John Barrow. He was there to Give The Gift Of Life, as well. (to his credit, he didn't create a media circus; it was just him, his daughter and an aide. She took a picture for the occasion, however he was otherwise just there like anyone else)

They took us into the little room where they prick the finger and ask those crazy questions, like "Have you had sex with anyone who visited Indonesia with a friend whose cousin came into contact 20 years ago with HIV?" There are a lot of "sex" questions. And much as I tried to brush 'em off with a light-hearted "If so, my wife would have some unpleasant things to say to me!", they had no sense of humor. C'mon, lighten up -- those questions are LAME -- i.e., if I patronized a brothel in Elbonia, and conducted business with a prostitute who had the AIDS virus, would I admit it?!?!?!

Those questions - at least two dozen before I lost count - they ask in a rat-a-tat manner which called to mind those stupid and pointless "car inspections" you had to have done each year back in Arkansas. My side of the conversation consisted of the lyrics to The Human Beinz 1967 hit "Nobody But Me."

Okay, the worst part over with (I, for one, find that the finger-prick for the initial blood iron test more painful than the actual needle in the elbow to fill the bag!), I made my way for the next open 'bed.' At the same time, my wife was finished with her Grand Prick-quisition and took a bed adjacent to mine.

Now there's one huge difference between Seraphim and myself when it comes to what I'll call "accessibility" ... For me - *poit!* - a vein pops up like that whack-a-mole game and it takes a blathering retard to miss with the needle. Sera, on the other hand, is like a friggin' turnip. I remember the devil of a time the nurse had trying to find a blood vessel when we each got poked for the marriage license blood test.

I have to say, those Red Cross people on duty this afternoon were good. Got her on the first try.
We filled our bags, got our little bandages and were sent on our way with "nab" crackers and our choice of fruit punch or apple juice ("Due to a mixup in Urology, no apple juice will be served today.") . I took fruit punch and the wife chose apple juice.

On the way back we picked up a couple of DVDs at Movie Gallery, and now we're home.

I'm always happy to give blood. Aside from knowing my precious fluids can save some lives and help out some of the people in this area who are still in need of blood from the refinery tragedy, I also like the fact that every bit of what I give is going to those who need it. No "overhead" to service ... it all goes to help my neighbors. And, as I've said, the karma factor always applies.

If you're healthy and able, and can do so without fainting or some other complication(s), you should consider doing the same.

Oh, and as for Rep. Barrow ... he was turned away, unable to donate blood because he traveled outside the country recently (he was in Afghanistan, I believe). Well, that sucks! As I see it, though, he gets credit for attendance.

Ciao for niao.

--Talmadge "56 more days 'till I can do this again" Gleck

PS - Why does my left arm look like a three-week-old banana? (just kidding)

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