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Longreads pick: Blood, sweat and fears

I felt a little guilty about pushing my colleague John Sanford to confront his blood phobia as part of a story he was writing for Stanford Medicine magazine. I feel fine about it now, though. While writing it, John overcame the phobia! And the story turned out very well too. In fact, it was recently singled out by long-form journalism curator Longreads as a story worth reading.

Here's how it starts:

I awoke close to midnight. It was the middle of August, in 1992, and the windows were open in the room of the Paris hostel where I was staying. The air was warm and still. My chest felt moist with — sweat? I touched the substance with an index finger and pressed it to my thumb. It felt tacky. Blood!

(That's John in the photo, by the way. Yes, he's holding a test tube of blood.)

Previously: New issue of Stanford Medicine magazine asks, What do we know about blood? and Programmed to fear spiders?
Photo by Erin Kunkel

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