There was no way around it. I looked at my calendar page and saw the looming appointment inked into Wedsday’s square. “Dentist 2:00pm”. I saw it every day ever since the page was turned to “June”. I don’t really dread dentists as much as I used to as a kid. However, I don’t have that eager anticipation of glowing happiness and joy while pumping my fist and clicking my heels simultaneously shouting “woo-hoo”. No, I’m more real than that.
I didn’t really mind all that much that the appointment was coming up. It seemed like just a hiccup in my unbusy schedule. Besides, I like Dr. Adam Langan. No, he didn’t even know I would give him a free plug. Before Adam became Dr. Langan, I knew him as an intern/part time employee at the radio station. He was a high schooler. Now, he’s in his first year as a professional. He’s working to build up his practice and acquire patients. He’s been blessed with a cheerful chairside manner.
I don’t enjoy having somebody poking and scraping around inside my mouth. The technician is really nice. She likes to chat about her workouts and family life while cleaning my pearly whites. Maybe that’s a diversionary tactic?
It’s funny how the mind focuses on other kinds of teeth when you’re sitting in the waiting room. I thought about rodent teeth. Especially squirrel teeth. They never have to schedule trips to the dentist. Their teeth constantly grow, just like fingernails. The little critters must regularly gnaw on wood to keep them worn down to the proper length. The image of human teeth that grow like those of rodents emerged in my mind. Proper hygiene would probably consist of brush and gnaw. Dentistry would be practiced like hair styling. Every so often you’d go to the dentist to have your teeth trimmed or styled in the latest oral fashion statement. There would be designer gnawing appliances. Recycled hardwoods for environmentalists. Maybe some neon colored carbon fiber gnawing strips for hipsters. There might even be some sort of electronic motorized gadget for the geeks.
Animals have never had to worry or suffer with bad teeth. Have you ever seen a deer brush his teeth? Now that cats and dogs eat processed foods, veterinarians check for tooth decay in pets. Who came up with the idea that cat food should include sweeteners? Do you brush your pet’s teeth regularly?
I once read an article about sharks. Evidently they break their teeth quite frequently. It doesn’t bother them because a replacement tooth soon moves into place. Sort of like a domino effect. Why didn’t we evolve to have those sorts of teeth? Maybe it’s for the best. Can you imagine french kissing a mouth filled with razor sharp shark’s teeth? Heaven forbid!
I still wonder why homo sapiens evolved with such weak teeth. There have been discoveries of Cro-Magnon man and Neanderthals who suffered through primitive dentistry to fix decayed teeth. Imagine having the tribe’s medicine man extracting your molar. He would not have novacaine. Perhaps you might drink some sort of primitive alcoholic concoction. Still, ouch! Major ouch! You wouldn’t have much for preventative measures either. Clean your teeth with a stick and maybe rinse with some water. No Colgate, no Oral B.
I’m thankful to live in the modern age with relatively pain free dentistry and sanitary daily maintenance techniques. It certainly helps make kissing one’s lover even nicer.
The Blue Jay of Happiness doesn’t have any teeth.