Lou Gehrig said he was the luckiest man on the face of the earth, and I feel much the same way. I have the freedom and resources to make this website, rally people, and create events. Other people don't have that luxury. So, let's get me a kidney, and then let's fight for them.


I got a kidney. Mom my became my donor. She the most selfless woman I know and she’s my hero.

I had a dream when I was diagnosed that this could be a place for other people to connect… it didn’t end up being that but I’m not done. I’m still getting back to normal… or rather; A new Normal. It’s not easy but it’s a hell of a lot easier than when I couldn’t walk or go up stairs.

I’m keeping this site mostly the way it was as a reminder to myself mostly but to others as well… I made it. So can you.

As I find out who I am now and discover the small changes in my mind and body I’m going to be thinking of how to connect more people. I have no idea what form it will take. But know this… I am COMMITTED to making this world better for those of us who have to struggle with this.


Imagine wood glue.

Now open up your leg at the knee and pour a couple of bottles in there.

Keep going.

Top it off with another bottle for good measure. Imagine it running down the inside of your legs. Your legs become heavier. It pools in your feet and ankles; it becomes what can only be described as a sad, viscous excuse for a leg. It feels foreign, alien but alas, you still have to use your feet to get around. Welcome to just one unfortunate aspect of Kidney failure.

My Current Kidney Function (17%)
Your Kidney Function (Probably)

My name is Zach. I’m 33. And I found out in April of 2015 that I have an autoimmune disorder that attacks my kidneys to such a degree that I need to get a kidney transplant. Pretty jarring.

I might have told you I didn’t react emotionally when the doctor gave me the news. But I did. It just wasn’t what you’d expect.

I would imagine most people cry. I didn’t cry. I didn’t even want to. I wanted to be better. Immediately.

I had to do something to stave the feeling that I was broken. How do you come to terms with that? I had to make something happen that would make this situation better in that moment. The gears started turning.


There are reasons I choose stories and music but – at the end of the day – what I really want is twofold: To be well and for more people to educate themselves about either becoming a living donor or getting that information out there such that the living donor pool grows. In short, this is how myself and thousands of other end stage renal disease patients will get to live longer.

They often tell you that becoming a living donor is “life giving”. I think someone can read that and blaze right over it, or dismiss it as trite. Yes, A living donor will give me more life on this planet there are no two ways about it but how can I communicate that to you. How can I convince you that it really does work?

There are thousands of people walking around with kidneys donated from living donors living their lives, working, contributing in places they may not have been able to if that gift wasn’t given.

Every 14 minutes someone is added to the kidney transplant list. That’s people per episode of Game of Thrones you watch!

How much is this going to cost? That was the first question.

I didn’t have any answers. But I did have one thought swirling around in my head.

A children’s story about a kidney. What? Yeah. Well I guess that’s how my mind works. Stay with me here.

As I started to think and brainstorm with friends, we came up with Cal. A kidney who quits his job in search of a better job. One he doesn’t suck at. But… how does that raise money. I don’t know. I still don’t know. If nothing else, I can provide you with a story and hope that you connect with it in some way.

You know when you can’t get that one idea out of your head? That became Cal. and Cal became a webcomic.

At this point, I’d spent two weeks in the hospital. The bills were also piling up. I’d only told a few people about being in the hospital. I needed to tell more people.

Telling people individually, even friends, became exhausting. I needed to just say it. Out loud.

So I said it. Out Loud. "I need a Kidney"

Within a matter of two days I had writers, artists, musicians, web hosting. All donated. All out of the kindness of their hearts. You are here, now, because a community came together in a time of need and helped create something. To help me.

Local magazines, podcasts, and the Fox 2 News came to interview me about Cal and my approach to this. As a result other outlets contacted me, websites, bigger blogs, the American Transplant Foundation. I was blown away.

All of that is what finally brought tears. When I realized what mere words on screen and a couple people sharing a link around had done. I started welling up. It had gotten me one step closer to finding a kidney. but it doesn’t stop there…

How can I help?

  1. Spread the word.
  2. Share, share, share. Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, or carrier pigeon.
  3. Read the comic.
  4. Tell your friends. Like, actually tell them.
  5. Download the album.
  6. Donate some money. Help me pay down those medical bills.

In the end, I want to be whole again. I want to feel like I can live my life again. I want to ride my bike again. I want to enjoy a cocktail with dinner again. But more than that…  I want to inspire more people that this is a real need. A need that goes unspoken for whatever reason, but a real need nonetheless. Consider living donation so that people like me can get some extra years in and hopefully do some good.

All said and done, I’m lucky. Lou Gehrig said he was the luckiest man on the face of the earth and I feel much the same way. I have a great job with a fantastic company who is working with me through all of this, I’m surrounded by an amazing group of friends and a tireless community of help, and finally, I have the freedom and resources to make this website, rally people, and create events. Other people don’t have these luxuries. So, let’s get me a kidney and then let’s fight for them. Let’s make sure they can get the what they need to live longer as well.

Let’s make this less scary, together.