I’m giving blood today. Anyone want to go with me?

I'm going to look just like this later today. I'm even wearing a yellow shirt...

I’m going to look just like this later today. I’m even wearing a yellow shirt…

Yesterday, I got a call from the Red Cross saying the requisite 16 weeks have passed since I last donated double red cells (after giving whole blood, you only have to wait 8 weeks), so it’s time to give again.

As usual, they were eager for my blood. When the lady on the phone suggested Wednesday, and I said neither Wednesday nor Thursday was good, and they didn’t have any slots that fit my schedule on Friday, so how about next week… she jumped in with “How about tomorrow?”

So I’ll be down at the Red Cross HQ on Bull Street at 5:30 today, preparing to donate through the Alyx process.

Before we got off the phone, though, the lady asked if I had any friends or family who could also come along with me and give.

They’ve asked me that before. It’s always sounded sort of odd. It makes recruiting someone to give blood sound as casual as, “Hey, wanna grab a beer after work?”

But it must work sometimes, or else they wouldn’t keep doing it. So I’ll try it.

Anybody want to go down to the Red Cross with me this evening and give blood? My treat…

17 thoughts on “I’m giving blood today. Anyone want to go with me?

  1. Brad Warthen Post author

    And no, I don’t know whether you have to have an appointment. I suspect not, if you’re giving whole blood — there are far fewer slots for Alyx, which is a more elaborate process involving a special machine.

    But if you want to join me, I’ll quickly find out for you…

  2. Brad Warthen Post author

    OK, I went ahead and found out for you, for as Jack Aubrey would say, there’s not a moment to be lost! Quick’s the word and sharp’s the action! Etc. And Stephen Maturin would say you’ll feel much better after. Nothing like a good bleeding, to rectify the gross humours.

    They DO accept walk-ins, but prefer appointments. So call either 1-800-REDCROSS or 803-779-2400 to set your appointment. You can probably schedule it for about the same time as mine, if you give whole blood. And you’ll be out earlier than I am. I once took only five minutes from start to finish to give a pint of whole. What I do takes at least half an hour.

  3. Silence

    Double Red Cell Donors –
    If you are male, you must:
    •Be healthy
    •Be at least 17 years old in most states
    •Be at least 5’1″
    Don’t want any dwarf blood contaminating the blood supply…

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      I feel kind of like Bluto here: “Who’s with me? Let’s GO! Come on! Heyyyyy…”

      Then, when nobody follows him, he comes back and says, “What the f___ happened to the Delta I used to know? Where’s the spirit?…”

      After all, was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?

  4. Brad Warthen Post author

    OK, I did it, and I didn’t see ANY of y’all there. But I’m glad Kathryn was with me in spirit.

    Speaking of which, Kathryn should enjoy this…

    I don’t know whether it was just a coincidence or not, but I felt pretty drained, so to speak, after my donation. To the point that I really wasn’t on top of my game mentally.

    I fell into a conversation with a young man I know from seeing at breakfast at the Cap City Club — he was giving whole blood — and he wanted to talk about strong mayor. He was challenging the need for such a change (this is one part Kathryn will like), and for my part, I just… had trouble… thinking of all my usual… answers (which is another part I thought she’d like). So I was kinda like, yeah, man, whatever… I was sort of in Jesse Pinkman mode.

    I need to go get some iron pills, get my red cells back up, recover my mad skills, yo? Because this won’t do…

          1. Brad Warthen Post author


            We recently discovered that two (and possibly three) of my grandchildren have celiac disease. And they almost certainly got it from our side of the family.

            I’ve never been tested for it, because I’m allergic to wheat anyway, so I never thought it relevant. But now I’ve learned that there’s a whole lot besides wheat that people with this condition should avoid.

            One of them is barley.

            So… I have yet another reason NOT to get tested and find out I have the disease.

            In the meantime, I tend to drink Budweiser, because at least a lot of that is rice.

  5. DanM


    You really should be tested. Untreated Celiac Disease can cause a number of health problems. You can read about it on any number of websites. This link from the Mayo Clinic is a good start:


    Our daughter was diagnosed as having Celiac Disease in 1982 through the “gold standard” test – a biopsy of the small intestine. Celiac was not as well known then as it is now. There are now blood tests that can serve as “screening tests,” but the biopsy is still the definitive test for diagnosing Celiac Disease. The only treatment is to avoid eating anything with the protein gluten from wheat, rye, and barley. You should at least get the blood test done.

    The only Budweiser beer certified to be gluten free is Red Bridge. See the following link.


    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Thanks, Dan.

      I know this sounds really stupid and immature, but my diet is so severely limited now, on account of my many allergies, that I just don’t have the heart to find out I have to limit it much, much further.

      I just don’t feel up to the additional hassle…

Comments are closed.