Saturday, October 17, 2015

Is it safe?

Yesterday I went to the dentist. I rarely go to the dentist because I associate dentists with the Nazi dentist-torturer played by Laurence Olivier in Marathon Man. I can never forget him asking  Dustin Hoffman, over and over again, "is it safe?" 

Dustin Hoffman replies, "yes, it is safe." 

This does not seem to satisfy Herr Doctor. He asks again, "is it safe?"

Dustin Hoffman has no idea. So then he says, "no, it is not safe." 

The impeccable Nazi then persuades Dustin Hoffman to open his mouth, and he probes around, looking for a perfect cavity. He finds it.

The Nazi dentist sinks the dental pick deep into the cavity, inflicting obscene dental pain on Dustin Hoffman. 

After Hoffman calms down, the Nazi asks him again, "is it safe?" 

It goes on forever.

I practice obsessive dental hygiene because I fear Teutonic dental picks. But I am addicted to nicotine, I chew nicotine gum all the time, so yesterday, I finally broke down and I went to the dentist, because cavities were killing me. 

My dentist is a small, mean lady. She looks more like a lesbian on the warpath than a Nazi dental torturer as she lectures me, telling me that I need root canals. I tell her to just pull all my teeth out, and this pushes her buttons. She gets very angry with me. 

I do not care about her gender preferences, but it feels like she is discriminating against me for being a breeder. She actually told me, like she was rejecting the tyranny of patriarchal evolution itself, "you cannot order me," because I told her to just pull my teeth.

Apparently that is the wrong thing to say to a mean, lesbian dentist.

We argue. She insists that I should subject myself to excruciating root canals, rather than just yanking all my teeth out.

I have a friend, the VA pulled all his teeth for him, they gave him false teeth, and he tells me that they work great.

When he smiles, he has a dazzling, movie star smile.

This seems like a perfect solution for my dental phobia, it will resolve my issues with nicotine gum, and I will not have to wonder, "is it safe?" I, too, can have a dazzling, movie star smile.

To make a long story short, my dentist only pulled one tooth, and she filled some  cavities. I have to go back for more fillings, so it is not yet safe. She refuses to just yank all my teeth. I would go to a different dentist, but this dentist can competently extract a tooth like it is nobody's business. She is a superb dental surgeon.

I felt minimal pain during yesterday's procedure. She was generous with the topical anesthesia, and quick with the nerve block, so I felt only a dull pressure. No real pain. That requires expertise. If she is a breeder-hating lesbian, you would not know it when she administers pain killers or when she pulls teeth.

When she was in the middle of the extraction, I shuddered as the whine of the bone saw hit its crescendo and the screech was like nails on a chalkboard. I heard my molar crack, but I felt only dull pressure, even as I kept imagining an Austrian-accented, "is it safe?" 

When she showed me the tooth afterwards, I was amazed, because I felt no pain. She is a very good dentist.

I put up with her gender bullying because she pulls teeth great and she is generous with the anesthesia. Today, the day after, I am a bit sore. But a few Tylenol #3's with codeine, and I am fine. I can eat soup. I can brush my remaining teeth. 

How she can extract deep-rooted molars, and not bruise the hell out of my gums, I will never understand. But she does. She needs just one suture to close the wound, and it is self-absorbing. Excellent dentistry.

So I am keeping my mean lesbian dentist for now. I am getting fillings. But I draw the line at root canals. I would rather have every tooth in my face yanked. 

My Nazi lesbian dentist shakes her head, saying, "this is a misconception." But my friend has fake teeth, he eats what he wants, and he says that it is very convenient. I watched him eat corn on the cob. For him, it is safe. He has a dazzling, movie star smile.

The next time that I am back stateside, I will get the VA to pull my teeth. All of them. And I will return to visit my Nazi lesbian dentist one last time. 

Just to give her a dazzling, movie star smile and to tell her that yes, it is finally safe.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

modern dentistry is painless except for the small pain of the first anesthetic injection. Keep writing, I like reading your posts, and I amn hoping to see the essays of your time in the Rangers again. Mike.

10:47 AM, October 18, 2015  
Blogger Esteban Trujillo de Gutierrez said...

Coming up shortly, Mike. :)


8:37 AM, October 30, 2015  
Blogger STI Team said...

Way to read my mail, brother.

Yes... I should have watched Marathon Man when it's impact on my dental hygiene habit could have made a difference.


12:54 PM, February 11, 2017  

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