Son, Be a Dentist
I get a phone call from the dentist's office about once a year for my annual checkup. Basically the conversation that follows is the caller (the dentist's receptionist) somehow persuades the callee (some sad sap-Yours Truly in this case) to come into a pristine office to potentially get every single tooth in your mouth ripped out of from their roots and pay for the privilege for this to occur. What should, in any other circumstances, be bone-chilling words, are rendered nice and perfectly normal by courteous women in the employ of my dentist. I have a thing for dental nurses. I think we all kind of do. There's something about a gorgeous woman who can get away with hacking into our mouths with machetes that turn normal folks like you or I into masochist of the highest order, like a modern day Leopold Ritter von Sacher-Masoch, who likes nothing more than being bound/ tortured/ humiliated in a dentist's chair.
'Mr. Heazlewood, would next Thursday be a good time for your appointment?,' asks the receptionist sweetly.
'Yes. Yes it would. Will you be pulling out all of my cavity-ridden teeth? I don't know if my jaw can handle it.'
'Don't worry sir this is just a routine checkup.'
Thursday comes along. I find my feet walking towards the dentist's office against my better judgement. Run you fool! cries the self-preservation part of my brain, we can still catch a plane to Honduras! I know that the fear is unjustified. There is not going to be an elderly German by the name of Szell-der Weise Engel- who is going to operate on me, sans anaesthetics, and ask me 'Is it safe? Is it safe?' throughout the whole procedure.
Pretty soon I find myself strapped in a chair. There is the oral hygienist, who's job it is to hack away my diseased gums, and an assistant to suck blood and saliva from my mouth and to cauterise any wounds that may be inflicted during the procedure. After some pleasantries and a promise that I'll stop giggling every time anyone says "oral" the ladies descend upon me.
A while later the oral (snigger) hygienist, who has been stabbing into my mouth with really sharp metal objects asks me if I grind my teeth. 'Grrndd mrugh teergghh?', I ask with a mouth full of weird objects.
'Mm,' says the oral hygienist, 'I can see that you've been grinding your teeth for some time. Maybe you do it in your sleep.'
Ever since I left the dentist's office, spitting blood but smelling minty, I've noticed that I do grind my plaque-encrusted teeth when confronted by an idiot. And this can happen as many as eight or nine times a day.
Person: Do you guys have Heineken on tap? (He is standing right in front of the beer taps, of which there are only two)
Me: Nope. Just Carlton and Beck's.
Person: So, no Heineken then?
Grind, Grind, Grind
Me: (after delivery guy has left) Hey! I specifically asked for no pineapple!
Grind, Grind, Grind
Filling out forms-
Me: This is so frickin' confusing. Grind, grind. "Sign not on the dotted line if thou hasn't had a heart condition in't the last three moons"? Grind. What the grind heck does grind that mean?
Not only do I have to adhere to a strict regimen of flossing once a day but now I find that I have to calm myself down and count till ten or something every time I'm confronted with a situation. For the sake of my teeth I need to control my inner rage bubbling just under the surface.