"We are excited to present you with your New York Blood Center Gallon Club ID Card. It’s one way we can recognize and thank you for your loyal participation as a blood donor and support of patients in our community. We encourage you to use this card as the preferred form of identification when you donate blood.”
The letter closed with a reminder that one is eligible to donate every 56 days and they looked forward to “serving” me soon.
I don’t know about you, but the whole idea of a gallon of anything that isn’t gas and going to be leeched from my body pints at a time is pretty disturbing. Using a gallon as the unit of measure simply sounds excessive, or greedy even (a friend of mine says “gross”).Their website now depicts several different cards that designate bloodletting status. For example, I was sent a white card, which means I’ve given somewhere between 1 and 4 gallons. A red card means you’ve donated less than 1; a gold is somewhere between 5 and 9, and a black is over 10. But what’s the point? It’s not like anyone sees these cards. In fact, donation centers now place “privacy screens” around where you fill out the questionnaires because, you know, someone might want to know if you’ve had unprotected sex with a needle-user. More than once. In Austria.
Evidently, gone are the days when one was actually paid for a donation. Gone are the days of free cholesterol and glucose-level screenings. Gone are the days of a receiving a sticker or pin that says BE NICE TO ME, I GAVE BLOOD. Now we are sent letters with souped-up donation cards and the reminder that we can give more, and soon.
And here I thought if I reached a gallon—which would take over a year even if I gave every 8 weeks, and I don’t—I might get, I don’t know, maybe a box of donuts.
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