Published on: 4/21/2012

Pouring my heart out to a dual-red donation at BloodCenter's Waukesha Donor Center early this morning got me thinking about National Donate Life Month and assorted other hemo-related topics. 

Besides the warm freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies to look forward to, BloodCenter has recently introduced an incentive program: Giving for Life. Something as simple as liking BloodCenter on facebook, following on Twitter, providing an email address... , or as complicated as hosting a blood drive, participating in a focus group, or volunteering, earns points toward shirts and other assorted gear. Heck, just writing about my blood donation today earns me 50 points, and the dual red itself: 300 points.

I've been on the Marrow Registry for years, but telling BloodCenter about it earned me 100 points. Does applying the orange dot to my driver's license let others know of my organ donation wishes? Probably not as well as signing up on the Wisconsin Donor Registry, where 1800 Wisconsin residents are waiting. Of the 24 categories on the reward points list, making my wishes known on the Donor Registry was the most rewarding thing for me, and I was rewarded 100 points for my efforts.

Shapeshifting directions a little bit... I'd like to mention yesterday was the 100th anniversary of Bram Stoker's death. Stoker, as everyone knows, created the vampire Count Dracula as author of the 1897 Gothic horror novel Dracula.

June 22 we'll be treated to the release of a strangely-titled vampire movie: Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. Yes, that is our 16th president slashing vampires with an axe, and no, that is not an Oscar nomination you're seeing. The first word in the movie's title, Abraham, also "Bram's" first name, isn't the only coincidence I have to report. 

Dark Shadows, a movie starring Johnny Depp is due out May 11th. When Depp was young he was obsessed with Barnabas Collins, the vampire, and wanted to be him. Now he will be, if briefly. Sadly, the 87 year old actor portraying Collins in the very poplar 1960s era gothic soap opera, Jonathan Frid, didn't live to see the premier. He passed away April 13th... Friday the 13th.