Eat, Drink, Blog / Gypsy's Musings

What’s analogous to a Root Canal? The Perils of Aging


My grandmother a month before she passed, meeting her great grandson for the first time.

By the time my grandmother was my age, she had no teeth. I mean, I’m guessing. I remember the horrors of being a child in my grandparents’ home in western Illinois. They were, so, well, old! They kept their teeth in these weird containers, like a snow globe you dare not shake. In fact, I now realize they weren’t actually “old”. Back in the day, they were probably mid-40s, i.e. MY AGE!!!

Okay, I’m getting emotional. And not for the right reasons. Both my grandparents have passed, and thanks to fluoride and modern dentistry, people don’t uniformly lose their teeth anymore. In fact, we hold on to them… till death do us part.

Seriously! Our teeth last longer than our marriages. Which is fine, but…

I’m into BDSM. Maybe I’ve mentioned it.

But even in my most submissive state, I do not want to be subject to the whims of the dentist. In fact, I hate my dentist. Yet I diligently visit him (invariably a “him”… are there women dentists? I do not know!) every six months. I once joked to my dentist that he really should offer me a Xanax every time I walk through the door. He didn’t joke back that NY State no longer allowed dentists to prescribe narcotics.

Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot.

I practically burst an embolism every time I walk through the dentist’s door. It’s not just because I fear the dentist. I have had a traumatic experience. I suffer from PTDD. That is, Post Traumatic Dentist Disorder.

When I was young—read: when my teeth were nubile!—I was subjected to a botched root canal. I’m pretty sure this is why today I am a self-proclaimed atheist. You see, no one who has survived a botched root canal can believe in a Biblical hell. It’s just impossible, as what you’ve suffered is by far the worst thing imaginable. And without hell, there can be no Heaven. Hence, atheist!

This was a dental incursion of apocalyptic proportions. It was a disaster. Without going into the graphic details, this is how bad it was: The dentist comped me a bridge after having had to pull the tooth. That’s how terrified he was I’d sue him!

But I digress…

I have a molar with a deep filling. It is really causing me a lot of problems. I know it’s not quite at the root canal stage (it can still tolerate heat, but it has zero tolerance for cold), but I’m thinking better safe than sorry. I should probably be preemptive and get the damn root canal now rather than suffer through another horrifying adventure that ranks me up there with the survivors of Guantanamo.

But here’s what I’m thinking. I want a root canal about as much as I want…

What? Water boarding. Hell, no! I’d take water boarding over a root canal any day.

Anal rape? BTDT. I already mentioned that I’m a card carrying member of the BDSM community. Dicks in my ass don’t scare me!

So what’s my euphemism? How do I explain to the world just how terrified I am about getting another root canal that I desperately need? I’m at a loss.

It almost makes me wish for my grandmother’s day. Almost.

Did I mention my father (a few bridges, but most teeth in tact) flosses six times a day? I’d rather buy stock in Polident. Yes, I want a root canal about as much as I want a root canal!

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