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Saturday, May 21, 2005

A victim of my own altruismThe HR department at work announced the Red Cross bloodmobile would be visiting our office/plant and in the spirit of giving and sacrifice I signed up.

I used to give all the time when I worked in Ft. Wayne. I even had the Gallon Award or whatever!

But I hadn't given since I started working in Huntington, over 11 years.

So Thursday at 2 I reported for giving.

The process has changed quite a bit, especially insofar as the question they ask you. Oh they still test you for anemia (didn't have it) and took my blood pressure (a cool 116/78). But all kinds of questions about had I ever had sex with people with AIDS or HIV and had I been to Africa recently (no to all).

Then it was out to the bus for the actual donation.

The chairs were comfy and the nurses nice (so I thought). Several friends already pumping away, so friendly insults and dire warnings were exchanged.

The needle insertion, always the worst part, lasted only a second and before I knew it my little donation bag was filling up.

I watched a couple other people begin the process as I gave and others finished up. The nurse chatted with me a moment about just what Our Sunday Visitor did. She had no clue.

I was finishing up just as she was starting the process on another co-worker. Consequently I think her attention was divided.

It was so divided that, when she took the clamp that usually goes on the tube leading from your arm to the bag, instead ofclamped the tube off to stop the flow, SHE CLAMPED ME ON MY ARM.

Here's what I said: "OUCH! OUCH! OUCHOUCHOUCH!!!!!!!!!"

She panicked and for a second had no clue what was wrong with me.

Me: "THE CLAMP YOU CLAMPED ME!!!!!"

Her"OH NO! I'm sorry! I'm so sorry!"

She quickly unclamped my arm and clamped the right thing. I had a prominent red pinch mark where the clamp had been.

I laughed hysterically, much to her relief, and she felt terrible, but I'm sure she was relieved, for if she had clamped a much less nice and altruistic person than myself, she might have gotten an earful.

So they gave me a t-shirt and a cookie, and I went back to work.

I immediately warned everyone in the office, watch out for the Red Cross ladies. They are dangerous with the clamps.

But I was glad I gave, anyway! I'll do it next time, too!

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