Today started with an interview at a temporary staffing agency. Since I haven't found a 'real' job yet, I figured I'd better do something while I wait and continue to look. My interviewer and I discussed my job history, skills, etc. Then the testing began. Arithmetic, simple logic, spelling - basic things. Then several proficiency tests for a few different computer programs, followed by two typing tests. I made it through all of this only to be confronted with the inevitable please-go-pee-in-this-cup-right-now drug test. I wasn't worried about drugs in my system [this week], but rather more my ability to, um, produce a sample on the spot. Thankfully it all worked out.

Unfortunately, all legal identifying documents save my driver's license are still up in Seattle, so I needed to go to the Social Security Office 12 blocks away to get official verification. I really wouldn't have minded the moderate walk, but at that particular time there was a wickedly cold, driving rain, and I had neither hood nor umbrella. But of course, underneath my coddled whinyness, I am of good Scandinavian stock and made it there and back again not much worse for the wear. Side note: The SS office boasted quite an interesting (read: sketchy) crowd monitored closely by a husky security guard and large-ish photographs of Pres. Bush and Vice Pres. Cheney.

Later in the afternoon I accompanied Jesse and his dad to the Red Cross to donate blood. I've never done it before, and figured this would be a good time to start. They had an appointment for a somewhat longer Double Red Cell donation procedure, and got started while I waited for someone to start the screening questionnaire with me. When I was finally called I quickly ran into some problems because of my travels overseas. In the end, none of the places I've been recently prevented me from donating, but the resulting controversy and confusion did keep me from starting the actual bloodletting until 1 hour and 45 minutes after I arrived. I mean, come on. Really? It was inefficient, and therefore quite aggravating.

So there I was, iodine soaked arm pumping out sweet life nectar into an attached plastic baggie. Every five seconds, I dutifully squeezed the rubbery foam toy in my left hand, as I'd been instructed to. The nurse asked me periodically how I was feeling and told me to let her know if I felt uncomfortable at any point. But I was doing fine, I was a champ. I was a First Time Blood Donor. And all of a sudden the room was going black. "Uhh, I'm not feeling very good..." People sprang into action - lowered my head, raised my feet, placed a damp cloth on my brow, etc. I think I only gave 1/3 or 1/2 of the amount they were looking for, and it took 10 or 15 minutes for the nausea and dizziness to subside, and then I had to sit and have some crackers and juice. Lame- all that and I failed to complete the mission! I think they can use what I gave for random tests or studies or something, but that's all.

Overall it was an unusual, if anticlimactic, day- with rather more bodily fluids involved than I should like to encounter on a regular basis.


lj said…
hi! if you saw my post about being able to do math, that was from my episode of taking tests at a temp agency that day. i forgot that 8y + y =9y. i'm awesome! are you? how was your b'day? happy belated!!!!!
Anonymous said…
perhaps you should write something...

John said…
It's all right. I used to always pass out or throw up every time I gave blood when I was a kid. Now I don't do that any more. I just cry.

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