The Curse of Less Than Zero (O-)

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Grover's picture
Grover
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The Curse of Less Than Zero (O-)

I've got less than zero. I've had less than zero all my life. In fact, I was born with less than zero. I've tried giving it away, but it always comes back. You'd think that something like this - oh so negative - would be difficult to give away, but anyone can take it. In fact, the more dire the emergency, the more valuable it becomes.

I'm talking about blood. I'm O negative along with about 7% of the population. Anyone can use my blood if needed, but I can only take blood from another O negative donor. That's the curse. Last week, I was informed that I was about to donate my 150th pint. That's a quart shy of 19 gallons. It went pretty much like the other 149 times - noneventful.

To find out more, go to http://www.redcrossblood.org. You can even find a convenient location and make an appointment. Once there, they check you in and give you a pamphlet to read. Then, they give you a mini exam and ask you to answer questions (in private on a computer) about your history and medications. If you meet their requirements, you sign a form and get escorted to a donation chair. They then sanitize your arm, stick a needle in and out flows the blood. (If you're squeamish about needles, you don't need to look.) Afterwards, you walk over to the post donation area to drink some juice and eat some cookies.

I'm not posting this to toot my own horn. The phlebotomist told me that only about 1/7 of the O negative people actually donate. She didn't know if that was regularly donate or have ever donated. If you have the same cursed blood type and haven't donated, you really should consider doing so. We universal donors need to rely on others with the same type. If you don't know your blood type, this is a good way to find out. As long as you meet their minimum requirements, they'll gladly take any type of blood.

When you go, tell them Grover sent you.

Grover

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Grover
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Number 151

I just got back from donating my 151st pint - uneventful as the others. The staff told me that during summer, the regular donors aren't as likely to be available. This is one of the busiest travel weekends and unfortunately has a larger than usual share of accidents.

The red cross will take anyone's blood as long as it is deemed safe. They have stringent rules to keep the blood supply safe (as you would hope.) As long as you meet the criteria, you are eligible. If you have any questions, go to their website http://www.redcrossblood.org.

If you don't know your blood type, you can donate a pint and they'll tell you. Believe me, it will come back.

Grover

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Grover
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Number 152

I just donated my 152nd pint today. That is 19 gallons. The donation itself was uneventful, but I did something different this time. I had lots of green beans in the garden and picked just under 30 lbs (3 plastic grocery bags) to give to the people at the Red Cross. The volunteer at the front desk told me she lived in an apartment complex with low income seniors. She asked me if she could share a bag with them. I said, "that would be great."

Word spread quickly and the other 2 bags were quickly divvied up. Seems like everyone had a story from their youth about green beans. The phlebotomist (self described "blood sucker") told me how she would pick beans with her grandmother. I could see her waltzing down memory lane. I enjoyed watching.

If you haven't given blood to the Red Cross, please consider doing so. Your gift is the life blood of the community (literally.)

Grover

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Grover
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Number 153

I just donated my 153rd pint today. The donation was uneventful. The Red Cross is trying to streamline their process and make the donator screening questions available on the web. It should be available by year end. The questions can be answered any time within a day of the donation. That should shave about 10 minutes out of the office process.

If you haven't given blood to the Red Cross, please consider doing so. They'll take all blood types, but their favorite color is red.

Grover

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Grover
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Number 154

This is getting tedious. Listen really hard and you'll hear the sound of one hand clapping. Believe it or not, January is "National Volunteer Blood Donor Month." I don't know why they singled out January. Blood is needed throughout the year. I liken it to the ubiquitous mattress sales - hurry! Sale ends Sunday! When aren't mattresses on sale?

The Red Cross is trying to keep a safe and adequate blood supply at all times. They need donors who are willing to part with a pint, but they need to minimize the risk of collecting infected blood. They have determined that certain behaviors, travel histories, and medical prescriptions aren't conducive to a safe blood supply. They haven't gotten the questions on a web page yet. The volunteer at the donation center didn't know when it was scheduled to be done. Meanwhile, here is a FAQ that helps to answer questions of eligibility - http://www.redcrossblood.org/donating-blood/eligibility-requirements/eli.... If you have specific questions concerning your eligibility, you can call 1-800-RedCross. A phone volunteer will be happy to answer (or find an answer.)

I wish I could do it all myself, but I can't. Please help.

Grover

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Number 170

I just donated my 170th pint to the Red Cross. I still have the accursed O-. My attempts to give it all away have been totally unsuccessful. It keeps coming back.

Remember that if you're cursed like me, you can only take blood for an operation or emergency from an O- donor. Why not do something for the rest of us?

I hit a personal milestone at 168 pints. That was exactly half an oil barrel of blood. Woo Hoo! I doubt that I'll be around to completely fill the other half, but I'll keep working on it.

Grover

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Number 171

My goal is to give away my weight. One way or the other, I'll reach that goal. Either I keep giving blood, or starvation will be so rampant that my weight will drop significantly enough that I'll reach it that way. [cue the cackling morbid laughter.]

Grover

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Number 172

I had some fun with the phlebotomist today. I asked her to say, "The Lord" as she stuck the needle in my arm. Afterwards, she asked me why? I said, "so I could take the lord's name in vein." We both laughed about that.

Grover

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Number 173

Just finished most of the summer honey-duties. Got a call from the Red Cross that they have a shortage of blood. (When don't they have a shortage of blood?) In and out in about an hour. I'm one pint closer to my arbitrary goal.

Grover

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Number 174

I just gave number 174. While there, I always talk with the phlebotomists. One of them was in the process of closing on a house. She said, "I'm getting closer to my home." So this song started running through my head:

Grover

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Number 175

I overheard a good clean joke appropriate for a grade schooler while donating today. Q: What do you call the wife of a hippy? A: Misses Hippy. (Say it out loud if you don't get it. I guess it is a State of mind.)

Grover

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Number 176

I had to weigh myself this morning before going to give blood today since they ask for a current weight. My New Year's resolution was to drop 15 pounds. I'm happy to report that as of today, I only have 20 pounds to go.

Grover

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Number 177

I'm back down to about 15 pounds to go on my New Year's resolution. It got me thinking about the absurdity of starting the calendar year on January 1st (in winter.) It used to be that the new year began on April 1st. That made sense because that was when annual plant's life began and perennials started anew. When the official beginning of the year was changed to January 1st, some folks resisted the change and continued to celebrate the new year on April 1st. They were known as "April Fools." The original context of the word, "fool," was lost over time.

Since most New Year's resolutions fail, I'm going to stop making them. Instead, I'll make April Fool's resolutions. With the warmer weather and additional outdoor chores, I'm more likely to accomplish them. If I fail to keep them, I can always say, "April fools."

Grover

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LogansRun
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Thanks Grover

This is a worthy thread!  I give at least 3 times per year, but I'm a normal person and have A+ type.  

Cheers!

Grover's picture
Grover
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The Gift Of Life

Thanks LogansRun,

Keep up the good work! Like I've been told, "every pint counts." If you ever need blood, you can use some of mine. Unfortunately, I can't ask you to return the favor to me. Your blood would cause me serious problems, but there are other A+ and AB+ people out there that appreciate your donation. (If you were only as "Oh, so negative" as I am.)

The Red Cross starts calling me when I still have to wait another 2 weeks to be eligible to donate again. I don't like to commit to a schedule, so I generally just show up at the donation center shortly after I'm eligible. Sometimes, they're packed and I have to wait for an opening. They always find a way to fit me in. They're very accommodating that way. ;-)

Being a phlebotomist (blood sucker) is generally a thankless job. Whenever I have extra produce from the garden I bring it for them to share. I've been there so many times that most of the old timers know me and come to say hello (and see what I brought for them.) My asparagus is going crazy, so I brought in about 2 pounds yesterday. Not everyone is a fan of asparagus, but it got divvied up soon enough. A few have homes with gardens, but most of them live the apartment life - so fresh garden produce is a real treat. Besides, then I get treated like a king (a lower case king.) [Note: They treat everyone like royalty.]

Thanks again for donating blood, LogansRun. I wish more people would give it a try. It is literally the most valuable gift you can give.

Grover

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Grover
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Number 178

I got back home yesterday from visiting my folks. My e-mail was loaded with messages from Red Cross saying that they had a critical shortage of O negative blood. I went into the donation center without an appointment to find the largest crowd of donors I'd seen since shortly after 9/11. I waited over 3 hours for a turn. I had some pleasant visits with other donors.

Even though it was a very busy day, the staff remained professional and upbeat. Other than the wait, the donation went as smoothly as it usually does.

Grover

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Number 179

No runs. No drips. No errors.

Grover

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Number 180

The donation went as smoothly as normal. I've donated blood so many times that most of the staff know me. When they see me with a grocery bag, they know I've brought in goodies for them. I brought some chanterelle mushrooms that I found during a recent foray in the woods. Only 2 people knew what they were. The rest thought they might get poisoned by them. That's fine - more for those who can appreciate the bounty.

I finally fulfilled my New Year's Resolution (briefly) about a month and a half ago. To celebrate, I baked a pumpkin pie. Actually, it doesn't make sense to just bake one so I made 2. The smell of pumpkin pies baking fills the house with such a wonderful smell. The taste is even better! For me, pumpkin pie tastes the way being in love should feel.

The 2 pies disappeared in short order. I've found I can resist anything ... except temptation. It dawned on me that I made too many last year and that is what added unwanted girth to my midsection. It goes on much easier than it comes off. I decided that I wouldn't bake any except for Thanksgiving and New Year's Day. That way, I won't be tempted.

Grover

Greene's picture
Greene
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This is very commendable! I'm

This is very commendable! I'm proud , guys!

Greene's picture
Greene
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 14 2017
Posts: 10
This is very commendable! I'm

This is very commendable! I'm proud , guys!

Greene's picture
Greene
Status: Member (Offline)
Joined: Sep 14 2017
Posts: 10
This is very commendable! I'm

This is very commendable! I'm proud , guys!

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