Before I announce the results of my Labtest Contest, I have to admit that I wasn’t thrilled with my decision to give away my sweet hat.  I even took to my Facebook page, urging friends to vote so that- should they win- they could then turn around and hand my the hat as a Christmas gift.

As it turns out, that isn’t necessary!  I am keeping the hat. 

Any other time, this would be the good news of this particular blog post, but that is overshadowed by the surprisingly vital number of t-cells from last month’s doctor’s visit: 662!  That is the highest they’ve ever been since my HIV diagnosis in 1987.  It really is a great cap to a year that, health-wise, was light years ahead of last year, which saw some medical tomfoolery that included weeks of colds on and off, and a holiday hospital stay due to an adverse reaction to hemophilia medication.

“Hey Shawn, that’s great and all, but why do you get to keep the fucking hat?”

Great question, collective subconscious.

Well, the closest guess was from an unlikely source in the form of an anonymous Commenter (“Anonymous Coward”, but they signed in under the email “”) that posted:

"666! *devil horns*


This act of cyberterrorism makes any of the Wiki-Leaks antics pale in comparison, because in winning the Labtest Contest, thus giving me the excuse to keep the hat, Satan has thrown a trusted competition into turmoil.  I’m not sure if anyone will step forward to guess next time, knowing that a promised prize can be snatched away so easily.  I’m sure there are many that are wondering whether I posted that, having known the results before I announced the contest..

No way, that totally wasn’t me. For real.  I did laugh when the post came in, and the reason why I was begging for guesses on Facebook was in the hopes that Satan would be taken down.  It wasn’t until no one came close that I realized that, in winning the Jesus hat, Satan himself was giving me the greatest Christmas present of all... my own hat, and the cover to claim it.

Actually, good health is the best present of all.  I’m really thankful for all these t-cells, which give me the energy I need to go out and educate with Gwenn and just enjoy life. I really do get a kick out of all of you guessing on my t-cells- in my youth, as a newly diagnosed kid and then teenager with HIV, I feared those test results like you wouldn’t believe, and hated nothing more than getting labwork done.  I joke around a lot, but I don’t lose sight of the journey it’s taken to get here.

And I really love here.

Positively Yours,


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