Some Things Are Worse Than Mouth Pain  

I've spent a great deal of time in the dentist's chair. Maybe it's my penchant for power napping right after snacking on a full sleeve of Oreo's, or the merciless way in which I bite down on Jolly Ranchers because I like how it makes my teeth stick together, but my oral bed has been made for quite some time now (TWSS?). After several pulled wisdom teeth, a couple of root canals, filled cavities, and even a little gum surgery, I'm used to having my mouth and my wallet violated in all sorts of voluntary ways. The bulk of this work has actually taken place in the past two years, and the main reason I don't shart myself every time someone turns on a high-pitched drill-sounding device in my presence is because I've got such a great dentist. She's calm, gentle, soft-spoken, and easy on the eyes. She isn't stingy with the Novocain and will always 'script me some lovely narcotics with which to further avoid reality.

However, I didn't always have it so good. I used to not even care if my dentists were male or female, a mistake I once paid for dearly. The last male dentist I ever had, who shall henceforth be referred to as Dr. M (as in Motherfucker), started off well enough. I was pleased with how quickly he brought me in to handle a cavity that had developed on the back of my front teeth, seriously threatening my grill.

A few minutes after the chubby, numbing sensation had taken over the front of my face, Dr. M returned to get started on me. "This should only take half an hour or so" he said, a smug look of self-assurance hiding somewhere beneath his perfect smile. He then geared up -- mask and gloves -- but when he leaned over me I couldn't shake the feeling that something was out of place. In a flash it became frighteningly obvious; the surgical mask had been placed in such a way that it was only covering his mouth. Dr. M's big fat nostrils were now breathing who-knows-what right into my wide open facehole, not to mention all the incidental nicks and scrapes he was opening up with the drill across my gum line. In my mind I envisioned a constant stream of germs and assorted particulates being ejaculated from his nose and settling into my exposed gum tissue. And then, with the Gods conspiring against me, things got even worse.

At first glance it didn't seem like anything of size or consequence whatsoever. A little flake, but a noticeable one nonetheless, of snot was dangerously close to the edge of his left nostril. It clung for dear life onto one of his nose hairs, wildly flapping back and forth with each breath like a towel that had been hung out to dry in a storm. By this point I would have sworn it to be the size of a towel, too. It was all I could look at. He may have very well drilled directly into my brain stem, but I was too focused on willing that little bastard to hold on. Just a few more minutes I thought. Don't let go big guy -- you can do it!

But it couldn't. Like the Rock Biter from The Neverending Story, it just wasn't strong enough to hold on. Only instead of having its friends swept away by the nothing, it shot straight into my mouth. I gagged something fierce. Dr. M pulled back and I sat up, wondering if anyone would blame me for throwing up all over his expensive dental equipment. "Whoa-ho there! You need some suction?" he asked. "No, yoo da sucthun!" was the best I could retort through dead lips and tongue. I considered other, more harsh phrases such as "duh-ee affhoe" or "peef of sitt cweep," but ultimately decided it better to hold off on the insults until he was finished putting sharp instruments inside me.

To make matters worse, in the final moments of the appointment he stepped away for a few minutes to take a call. When he returned he ran gauze over my teeth to check the bite and ensure there weren't any sharp spots needing to be buffed down. After he gave the all clear, I looked over in enough time to see that the hand he had just pulled from my mouth was un-gloved. As in my tongue now knew the taste of the bare, hairy-knuckled hand that he was probably holding the phone with moments earlier. I looked at him in a confused, squinty way and asked "Did yoo jush puh yo un-gwoved hand in mah mouf?"

His response floored me, "Yeah, but only for a second," he said with a smile. A SMILE. Motherfucker. Not just motherfucker, but real slow and angry, like MUUUUTHAFUCKAHHH. I wanted to punch him in his stupid leaky nose. Instead, I told his receptionist that I couldn't find my Visa and to just bill me. A bill which I sent back without payment, save a pair of rubber gloves and the words "I would have paid this if Dr. Knuckle Hair knew how to use these" scrawled across it. In the end I'm happy to report that he never even sent me to collections for the unpaid amount, but above and beyond that I'm even happier to report that that son of a bitch didn't leave any diseases in my mouth. Unless of course you consider reverse gender bias to be some kind of newfangled, ridiculously awesome disease of obviousness.

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19 Reasons to Live

  • Moooooog35  
    March 9, 2010 at 4:50 AM

    On a related note, have the genital warts on your tongue gone away yet?

  • Shannon  
    March 9, 2010 at 5:53 AM

    I guess it's safe to say the rock biter didn't have big, good, strong hands after all.

  • Jen O.  
    March 9, 2010 at 5:56 AM

    Really? Did you really do that? That's just awesome.

  • Logical Libby  
    March 9, 2010 at 6:31 AM

    Does your dentist work out of a van down by the river?

  • Jennifer  
    March 9, 2010 at 7:51 AM

    My stepdad finally found a dentist he was comfortable with after growing up with the dentist from hell. Apparently the guy never used anesthetic, and got off on inflicting pain on kids. He was later arrested.

    Unfortunately, the good dentist was struck and killed by lightning on a Florida beach.

    Remember that when you bite down on that next Jolly Rancher. A mighty redwood might fall on your dentist ... or something.

  • carissajade  
    March 9, 2010 at 8:07 AM

    Ummm ewwww. You should have sent more than just a pair of gloves. And in slightly related news, thanks to you- I will probably have the "dentist" song from little shop of horrors in my head for the rest of eternity.

  • Sarah  
    March 9, 2010 at 9:53 AM

    Just got back from the dentist. Mine's a guy. I winced a little bit because I got a chill, and he just went ahead and dosed me up with some more novacaine.
    I'm still drooling down the side of my face and talking like Dick Clark, but I feel no pain, dood.
    Also, look at you getting all slim over there ----->. You're doing really well!

  • James  
    March 9, 2010 at 10:01 AM

    I think I would have started crying over the booger. Sobbing like a little child.

  • Lizzle  
    March 9, 2010 at 11:09 AM

    A relative of mine works for a dentist, who is arguably the worst dentist ever. I didn't find that out until it was too late and my new dentist, (who is fantastic) referred to the old dentist's work as "Special" ... Being told that you have "special" dental work is not as amusing as you might imagine. Fortunately the new dentist knows how to fix "special" dentistry.

    On the upside, at least you gave that dentist the payment that was genuinely due.

  • Surprisingly Bright  
    March 9, 2010 at 12:31 PM

    FYI, if your ever in a pickle and your gentle lady dentist is unavailable, I highly recommend an Asian male. I love mine. He's also easy on the eyes with the most porcelain looking skin.

  • Amanda  
    March 9, 2010 at 2:12 PM

    Oh my god! I just puked a little in my mouth reading that....ew

  • Ed  
    March 9, 2010 at 5:27 PM

    Dentistry is a racket.

    At least he didn't ask you to remove your pants during the examination.

    They usually charge extra for that anyway.

  • mo.stoneskin  
    March 10, 2010 at 4:13 AM

    The thought of bare, hairy-knuckled hands being rammed in my mouth makes me feel really ill. And another reason to add to the list of why I won't go to the dentist.


    100 reasons! Woo!

  • Heather Rose  
    March 10, 2010 at 6:10 PM

    Gag. Gag. Gag. *icky wrinkly chin face*

  • Anonymous  
    March 11, 2010 at 11:01 AM

    I watched an episode of House in which the main sick dude had a case of bacterial vaginosis IN HIS MOUTH. His breath was less than minty fresh and every 10 minutes or so, he would spit up a mouthful of vaginal discharge.

    I thought of you.

  • just making my way  
    March 11, 2010 at 11:20 AM

    Man, I am SO sorry I stopped by here on my lunch break today. GAH!

  • Tgoette  
    March 11, 2010 at 10:00 PM

    Urp! So. Gross. I'm going to be sick. LOL! I was going to schedule an appt with the dentist. Now I think I will just live with the pain instead. Blehhhh!

  • Anonymous  
    April 1, 2010 at 2:19 PM

    That's it. No more swigging while reading your blog. My monitor is, again, trashed.


    I guess Dr. M abides by the 6-second rule?

    Unfortunately, I relate all too well to the hatred of all things dental. I wrote a little about this here: but it's nowhere near as good as your story.

    How did I survive before finding your blog? Subscribing!!

  • Johnny Virgil  
    April 8, 2010 at 3:20 PM

    How long ago was this again? Just wondering because you know it takes Hep C quite a while to become symptomatic. This guy sounds like a cross-contamination nightmare.

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