Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Two By Two, Hands of Blue

This morning, I head to the Dentist of Doom to get two fillings.

I'm not too concerned about the dentist himself; he speaks like an evening jazz DJ, calming and reassuring. It's the assistants that kind of have me worried. When I went for a cleaning a few weeks ago, one of them flossed me like she was wielding a giant chainsaw.

I'm nervous in general because I've never had fillings before. (This is what comes of not having been to the dentist in three years. Huzzah for finally having insurance.) I hear that fillings aren't supposed to hurt, but I've also heard that they can go badly. I had my wisdom teeth pulled in high school, one of which decided at the last moment that I was its best friend in all the world and we were inseparable. It took a dozen shots of novocaine and my former dentist's foot braced against my jaw to pull it out.

The new dentist had me fill out a three-page form, one question being about negative dental experiences, which I described in three-part harmony with full orchestration. (I also checked the box that said, "Yes, I have seen a shrink. Now please pick my teeth." Um, weird.)

This visit will be different, I keep telling myself. Mainly because I'm not having teeth pulled. But here's what's going through my head anyway:

When I walk through the door, everything will appear normal... until the assistant checks me in. Then she will stand up, a giant black cape unfurling behind her, and plastic Dracula teeth grinning at me from the depths of her cackling mouth.

She'll guide me through the door to the back, above which the words, "Abandon hope, all ye who enter here" will be emblazoned. It may or may not burst into flames as I pass through.

At the dental station, once I'm firmly strapped into the ever-reclining chair, ten spotlights will shine into my eyes at once as the dentist interrogates me about the last couple of weeks. Have I been flossing since I was last in? Have I been eating well? Does my shrink know how terrible my teeth are?


And then come out the gloves. Two by two, hands of blue will pry open my jaws, forcibly holding me down as my limbs flail spastically in all directions. While filling my mouth with cement, the dentist will exclaim, "Why look! We've missed some of your other rotting teeth! Let's just fill ALL OF THEM!"

His laugh will roll like thunder above my cries of terror.

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