Drive To The Blood Drive!

The Tekko panel videos coming out along the next two weeks (How To Avoid Bad Writing Part 6 comes out tomorrow and the next day we have the full hour long panel if you don’t want to watch it in parts).


So with all that going on, I figured we could talk about something else. Let’s talk about the life saving art of giving blood. Now I’m a little ashamed of the fact that I am unable to donate blood because of Enetophobia.

Yeah, a fear of pins and needles. Also could be called Trypanophobia, Belenophobia, etc. depending on the particular type. Either way it equates to a fear of needles. I don’t fear many things, but spiders and needles are two things I do fear.

Maybe this, too…y’know, if I woke up to it in my face.

Maybe this, too…y’know, if I woke up to it in my face.

But my wonderful wife enjoys giving blood. Once she donates she almost can’t wait for the next chance to donate. Well she hasn’t really had the opportunity to give blood because of our schedules in the past year or so.

But at work there was a donation run and we went in and she dropped a pint or two in their hands. They told her the next time she would be eligible to donate was February 14th. We opened our schedule for the next day off after that date and scheduled her an appointment at one of the local hospitals, 2:30pm.

Well, unfortunately my wife came down with an infection a week before the donation period and she called to reschedule it. It was now the end of March, plenty of time to heal.

Also plenty of time to catch a cold, two days before the donation time. They told her they’d just have to pitch her blood anyway, so let’s shoot for April, instead.

And there we were at Tekko. The Tuesday after Tekkoshocon we were scheduled to head to the hospital at 2:30pm so the wife can donate blood.

Tekko’s over, we get Monday to rest, and Tuesday afternoon we go into the Hospital.

Now let me take a moment to tell you a little story about this hospital.

Please, don't?

Please, don’t?

A few years ago I shredded my ankle in a fight. It was a bloody fracas, a bar room brawl with knives and clubs and baseball bats covered in nails. Actually it was a sparring match in a dojo, but that’s beside the point.

Point is I went to this Hospital, we’ll call it…screw it we’ll call it what it is: St. Clair Hospital. Apparently their banners say it is rated #2 hospital in the country or some crap like that.

Well I went in there using an old cane to support myself because I only had one functioning leg. I checked in and they told me to hobble to the end of the hall and wait in the waiting room.

Yeah…hobble. They didn’t offer me a wheelchair and just kind of glared at me until I stood up and hopped out of the room. So I hobbled to the end of the hall and found an empty seat in the packed waiting room.

Three hours later a nurse finally comes out and says my name. Now it’s back down the hall. After I hobble to the door he looks at me and says, “Do you…need a wheelchair?”

“Yeah, that’s be nice, actually.”

“Okay…go sit back down and I’ll get you one.”

…seriously. At least he actually came over to my seat and helped me get in the chair when he brought it out.

So he takes me back into the radiology department, and they tell me to climb onto this high table and brace my leg on it. They take a few x-rays and tell me they’ll be out once the x-rays are developed.

Now I’m no expert on x-rays, but it was another three hours before anyone came out. They gave me a pair of crutches and some kind of plastic thing that they called an air-cast. They told me to suck it up and sleep it off, it wasn’t broken so I should be able to walk fine in a day or two.

Wouldn’t even give me a work excuse for Monday (I had hurt it on Friday and gone to the Hospital on Saturday when I realized it was more serious than the sprained ankle I had thought it was).

Sunday evening I get a call telling me they were wrong, someone reviewed the x-rays and said the ankle was totally shredded. I need to make an immediate appointment with an orthopedic if I ever wanted to walk again.

Skip ahead seven years and I’m back at this terrible hospital so my wife can donate blood. We pull up to the parking lot and see a fancy sign…


Parking Rates: 
0 - 2 hours:  $2.00
2 - 4 hours:  $3.00
Greater than 4 hours: $4.00
Lost tickets will be charged the full $4.00 rate.

Yeah…I know of some places that pay people to donate blood. Not St. Clair Hospital, though. You want to save someone’s life? Better bring your pocket book, bitches!

So we go in and walk up to the front counter. The wife had talked to three different people from Central Blood Bank to schedule this appoint. She was finally healthy enough to donate blood, again!

We had been told to just go to the hospital and that ‘we would be able to find it once we got there’. Unnecessarily vague, but okay. We walked up to the information desk and told them my wife had a 2:30 appointment to donate blood.

This was the look I was given.

This was the look I was given.

Yeah, apparently the blood bank only operates there on Saturdays and like one Friday a month, maybe two. They called around and nobody had any idea what we were talking about. No blood drive today. No idea why three employees of the blood bank told us to go there at 2:30pm on a Tuesday; there had never been a blood donation drive on a Tuesday as long as any of the four people at the front desk had worked there.

Now I’m perturbed. I’m going to get charged $2.00 to be told that blood bank employees are idiots? Great! I love this hospital even more than before.

Now, to their credit they told me that you don’t get charged for parking less than 20 minutes. And when we pulled up to the gate to leave the guard just hit the switch to let us out.

I should have known the blood bank employees were off their rockers when the nurse in charge of the blood donation drive that we did manage to be part of remarked that she couldn’t tell the difference between a pigeon and a goose, “I don’t know anything about birds, I just know they’re scary.”

Lives depend on these people? Yeah…check please, I’m done!



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