Convential wisdom holds that when one has a fear, one must face it, thereby conquering it and becoming a more perfect person. So, as part of my ongoing quest for perfection, I decided to sell some blood. At work, because they don’t take too much and they pay pretty well (more than a hundred dollars for five 10ml tubes if you have the right genotype).
Those of you who have known me for a while can already see the flaw in this plan. The thing is, I have low blood pressure (corpse hands!) and I freak out very easily. To illustrate, an example from my shameful past:
At my high school, every senior had to get up in assembly and give a speech. The subject matter was open, but was typically something along the lines of Life Experiences. Except that these were all wealthy, coddled children of Marin County, and they hadn’t actually had any life experiences, So you got a variety of related topics, such as The Time I Met Poor People and Injuries I Have Had. One of the latter was a young man who decided to describe the time he got hit in the face by a softball, and the amount of bleeding that ensued (I believe the term “buckets” was used). I was sitting on the end of the third bleacher up and I started to feel dizzy. “But no,” I thought, “I can’t put my head down. That would be too embarassing.”
The next thing I remember is looking up at the underside of the bleachers and wondering where my glasses went. I turned my head to find one of my friends holding my feet up in the air and a teacher asking me if I knew my name. I had scored a direct hit on the top of my head, which might have been bad if I hadn’t already been unconcious.
What I’m saying is, I have a history. But can a person really be a prisoner of her fears and biology her entire life? (Yes.)
Given that I have taken the time to tell this story, no points for figuring out what happened ten and a half tubes into my ritual bloodletting. The nice lady had to take the needle out pretty quickly because I was twitching. To be fair, I did warn her. Anyway, the experience wasn’t a total loss– I got apple juice and some rice crispy treats and fifty dollars for the shoe fund. And really, don’t you think conciousness is way overrated?