I think I read somewhere, some magazine for modern women probably, that the best way to not break new year’s resolutions was not to make any. On the other hand, maybe I just made that up right then. Whatever.
Despite the obviously sound advice, I did make up a small list which included the dependable classics, “watch less tv” and “be more motivated”. There was also “learn to drive” (third year in a row, never fulfilled or even attempted), “cook meat and fish” and (possibly related) “give blood”. So far I have accomplished two, but only really one, if you count the fact that it’s been non-ratings tv for the last couple of months. Let’s see what happens when I get back from my forthcoming overseas jaunt and new seasons of everything are back on.
Anyway. One afternoon, I finished work early and walked into the city, taking a route I knew would lead me past the blood bank. Stepped inside, filled in a form which asked quite a lot of personal questions about intimate details, received a sticker in the shape of a drop of blood which said “my first for life”, and got told to sit in the waiting room and drink several cups of water.
After a screening session with an engaging elderly nurse who asked all the questions in the form I had filled in 20 minutes earlier, I was sent ’round back (“follow the blue line on the floor”). There I was put in a comfy chair with hydraulic pump action, my blood pressure taken (120/80), and a very large needle inserted into the crook of my arm. Such a large needle that the attending nurse thought that my vein wouldn’t be big enough to take it.
Fortunately it was maybe some kind of first blood donor initiation joke, because after a bit of fist clenching and the like, the vein popped up. Needle goes in – it looks like when Keanu’s just been reborn in The Matrix and has all these tubes sticking out of him.
470mls later, I get ushered into the cafeteria where the nice lady on duty comes up and asks if I want a milkshake. Chocolate-banana, please. Before you can say “whizz whizz”, here it is. And a plate. Help yourself to the lavish spread: DIY hotdogs with little gherkins and pickled onions. And for dessert, a bowl of blood plums donated by the stone fruit growers of Australia, savvy in the ways of cross promotions.
In ten weeks I get to go back and have another half litre of blood pumped out of me. This time I believe I shall have a strawberry-banana milkshake.
- – -
before i had a “blog”, i used to write a sporadically updated letter on the front page of my website. this is one of them. i am consolidating it into these archives, because i can.