Back in January, I flunked out of platelet donation, when my veins were too skinny for the one-needle machine. I tried again this morning, dropping by the American Red Cross center behind Senora’s. The staff was really nice, and we jumped through all the absurd medical hoops together: “Mister Young, sir, are you male or female?” the phlebotomist asked me during the computerized interview, looking as apologetic as I’ve ever seen a phlebotomist look (not very.) I looked startled, and almost dropped my Georgia O’Keeffe mug, which would have spilled Red Zinger all over my sensible shoes.
Anyhow, with all the questions out of the way, they put me on the two-arm machine, this time, and they gave me the Elite Phlebotomist Team, the ones with their own roll-y carts with their names on them: “Hazel’s cart DO NOT TOUCH!”, one Elite Phlebotomist per arm, and the whole thing went very smoothly this time. It was a lot harder than I remember it being, though — I got pretty cold (though they were really nice with the blankets), and the anticoagulant made my lips tingle a lot (though they fed me Tums), but overall it was just… harder than I remember it being five years ago.
I did it on an empty stomach, though. I think I’ll try ONE more time after some breakfast, and see if that helps. On the plus side, you get bandages on each forearm, which is a societally-approved way to get that hawt, hawt duelling armbands look.