Our Matt Ryan was out with the Point Crew last week at a local blood drive, and it really got me thinking about how giving blood is something so simple that can help others so much. It's definitely something that takes some courage to do, though, especially if you have some of the same issues I do.

I hate needles. I have since I was a kid. Even now, if I have to get a shot of any kind I get a bit of anxiety. I really have to pep myself up, psych myself into it, and pray I don't accidentally see the actual needle. I don't even like watching them swab my arm first.

That being said, I have donated blood. Once. In college. It was for the annual blood drive Penn State does with Michigan State...the challenge of course, seeing which school can donate more. So in the spirit of competition, I rolled up my sleeve, and spent the better part of an hour on a bed...yeah, that's right, 10 minutes for most people, an hour for me.

Apparently, I have slow veins or something.

In any case, I didn't feel too bad afterwards. Free pizza and cookies, and unlimited 'orange drink'...for a college kid it was actually a great deal.

I got my donor card a few weeks later and found out I have type O+ blood, the most common type, according to the Red Cross. I should donate all the time...O's are the universal donor. Everyone can use my blood.

So since it's been a good 5 years since my last donation...I will try to step up my game and save a few lives this holiday season.

I invite you to join me, especially if you think you're too afraid to be able to handle it. Bring a friend, and don't think about anything but the lives you could be helping to save.

And plus, free cookies!

How often do you donate blood? Let us know below!