Truly Bad Films

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Bleeding for Charity

At least once a year I give blood to the Red Cross. Blood is my way of supporting them. I'm not usually that big on giving them money. They made a pazillion dollars on Hurricane Katrina and since they define their role as "emergency responders" I'm not sure how they intend to use all that cash for people who are still in trouble. But already I wander from my topic.

I've been giving blood for many years now, and the hoops you have to leap for the privilege get smaller and higher all the time. Over the last couple of years they've tightened contols on how much iron you need in your blood in order to give. For women in particular this is a problem because in a natural cycle, there are some days of the month when iron is especially low in a perfectly healthy woman.

The last time I went to donate I was turned down. The Red Cross nurse told me that they prefer to come to a women's college later in the month, because before the 15th everyone is bleeding and the iron levels are so bottomed out that the nurses can't accept many donors. But then she laid the bomb on me - she told me how to cheat the test!

What?!? I couldn't believe it. Cheat on my Red Cross blood test?!? It didn't seem ethical. Or maybe I mean healthy. Or right. Or something. But no. Apparently it's fine. They expect women to cheat on the iron test, because the new rules are so strict that a lot of women who aren't supplementing with iron can't pass it.

So, here's the secret y'all. This is how to cheat the Red Cross blood donor iron test. Take an iron tab and a Vitamin C with breakfast and, if you have time, do the same before lunch. Do NOT take it with caffiene or tea. Caffiene and tannin block absorption. Then maybe you don't have to worry about what day of the month it is. (I love the hospitality at the end of the ritual. You cannot leave until you eat a cookie! EAT A COOKIE!!! Your life depends on it!!!)

I'm going over in a few minutes to donate, and, yes I have done my test cheating supplementation. I hope they have pizza.


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