Posted by: jamesthethickheaded | July 15, 2009

Summertime… and the living is…

Okay. Mid summer strikes…as usual… and I’m wondering where the summer’s gone. Already darling daughter’s talking about when she’ll be headed back to Hotlanta. But it’s still cool as May here, reasonably dry… and about the best weather I can remember. Corn, tomatoes, cantelopes and all have been great! Have caught a few lightning bugs, helped a few toads up the curb, and even seen a great summer movie or two.

But summer is for…

Oral surgery! Tomorrow my head will hopefully be conked out as I start down the road of my patron saint in losing a few body parts (teeth).

“Hey… yeah… but at least I did it for…”
“But it’s the general idea…”
“Ideas… rationalism… irrationalism in your case. Hmmm… you’re just not gittin’ the nous thing man.”

Okay… see where this leads? Small things never stay that way.

Anyway, my little white pearly dudes were damaged by my Orthodonist back-in-the-day and my bod now thinks they’re some sort of bacteria that needs to be attacked.

“Thanks bod’…. we’ll talk later.”

Two guys going down for the count. One will be replaced with an implant, the other…. deep sixed and forgotten. Note for the tooth fairy is already written:

“Please leave either a free vacation home (nearby with no mortgage or maintenance), or a failed bank with one of those lottery tickets for some bailout money. Doesn’t have to fit under the pillow. And don’t forget: A water well for the thirsty folks in Africa…. ’cause now all those starving folks in India are driving their Boxsters to the Krispy Kreme. Oh.. and you can have the dog if you want him. Really. Call it a deal sweetener. No kidding. Okay, could you like instead… just drop in at 6:00 a.m on Saturday’s and let him out.”

My college roomie’s an oral surgeon in Memphis and trying his best to steer me from afar. But kind of like a backseat driver… it works only so well. Mostly, I like his Dr. Feelgood advice… but guys here in town seem to say, “Oh you won’t feel anything… maybe just a little pressure.”

“Pressure”. Yeah I get it. Rings a bell. Like all the way back to the hospital’s birthing class when I asked the nurse to translate “pressure” in terms of what it meant in delivery…. “Like do we mean pain ?” The room went so quiet you could have heard a pin drop in China. She answered, “Well…. yes.” Hands began shooting up all over the place… and the next week it was no mistaking why we met the anesthesiologist. My roomie’ had of course trained doing his bit in anesthesia at the… yes, I kid you not… “The Presley Shock Trauma Unit”.  And no… they never hear any jokes, wear sunglasses and leisure suits, swing guitars on their hip… or any of the fun things you’d expect. Just a random gun shot victim here or self-clobberizer there. But somehow if you play your card right, it leads to singing offers from Vegas…

Where was I… not Vegas f’sure. Anyway… as I was getting on to ask about how will it go…

“We’ll just use a local or two here.”
“Only a local? Seriously? “
“What I said. Maybe two. You’ll be done in twenty minutes… it’s hardly…”
“Hey doc… you got any other choices? I’m not good with pressure… I’m kicking salesmen out of my office all the time…”

Might as well have bee talking to the moon. Ralph… Alice… what do they know? Then I heard:

“Me… I’m just not good with watching all those implements going in… the look on some guy’s face… you shaking your head… the whole “whoops” thing… or the occassional “Damn!”… I mean… needles, cutting… pretty soon we’re talking blood… even mine…”
“Well… we’ve got gas…”
“Try some beano, man. No,  I’m talking…”
“I meant laughing gas.”

And then there’s this pause like I’m supposed to know he’s just armed a nuclear weapon and put the button in front of me. Only this is me we’re talking about here, and I’m still thinking we’re talking pain, I have no idea what’s just happend. All I can think is that the best the guy can do is talk about is some sitcom laugh track.

“You mean you’re just gonna tell some jokes? Like… how’s that gonna work?”

Okay, so I’m skeptical. Folks tell me it will knock me out, send me to La-La-Land. But if that’s for real, why don’t they call it “La-La-Land Gas” ? I mean…how am I supposed to know that laughing is sleeping? Kind of sounds like it got its name from… “They’ll be telling you it will knock you out, that it will kill the pain… but boy… your bod’s gonna just laugh at that idea.”

So I’m a big baby. Duh. Do we have to prove our manhood all the time? Yes, I had my wisdom teeth out – four all at once – long, long ago. Not a good precedent.  That was then, this is now.  And that wasn’t a choice. But to their credit… those guys had me out before I could count back from 20 to 19. They hit me with everything at once: gas, truth serum, Mr. T, Leon Spinks… and the good Lord knows what else… probably the cartoon hammer. I say bring it on! I mean…. let’s not be too worried about long-term side effects, nosirree. If we’re talking painkillers for like… real pain… we can just worry about the long term later.

Then my old roomie emails me to ask what my “pain management plan” is. I told him I was interested, but I didn’t know I was supposed to have one. So he sends me to his website. What I want to tell you now… is never, ever go to a doc’s website. There is “more better data” and then there’s all this stuff you don’t want to know. I got the later. Even watched the videos. Lots of stuff mostly about what can go wrong. Let’s just say that I called to suggest he really ought to take those things off. … ’cause it’s not really good for business. I mean they have some guy listing every possible thing … how many different ways you could end up dead, maimed, dismembered, and in permanent pain. Wow. I guess the lawyers  make them put that there….but my eyes got as big as Buckwheat’s. The fact is that if my guys do have a pain management plan… they aren’t talking. All I hear is about milkshakes and pressure.

So I guess my plan is to say, “Ow. Who’s idea was this?” Seems like the idea came from a committee. I’ve never seen more docs in my life.  And I’m a guy whose dentist used to tell him, “Greatest teeth in my practice.” Okay… so he retired. Now I’m seeing dentists, periodontists, and oral surgeons. Everybody wants in on this puppy. I know the economy’s slowed down a bit and the addition on the house… well… the carpenter doesn’t know where the next job might be… so the bathroom remodel job somehow morphed into an indoor pool off the bedroom.. and that won’t be finished until 2012.

“The bottom’s tiles are coming from Italy.”

All of which leaves me thinking I’d be better off with a stimulus myself. An upper not a downer. ‘Course somehow that seems to run the system in the opposite direction, and I’m sure the doc doesn’t want some guy he’s just caused a lot of pain running around his office and all those “sharp pointy things” hyped up on meds. But it’s beginning to look like a far better idea than any of those crack brained economists can come up with. I’d even give my eye teeth to have a stimulus yesterday… when it would do me some good, but instead… I’ll give some other teeth  tomorrow. My luck.

Anyway, the point of this rambling is if you’re not busy, please pray for me and the whole medical team… not to mention their carpenters, bankers, accountants, video producers and lawyers. I’m hoping this is really no big deal… though yesterday’s elevator ride didn’t help when “Daebo” suggested, “Hmmm. I’m not gonna sugar coat it, man… you’re not going to like it.” Gee… thanks Daebo. Maybe I should start taking the steps? Anyway… thank you. I’ m gonna have to look into fixing the Buckwheat-eye problem, too… but for now, that’s gonna have to wait.


  1. Good luck tomorrow. Let us know if the tooth fairy comes through with the vacation home.

  2. Kyrie Elesion! I’m not gonna pray for you! I’m gonna pray for YOUR WIFE!

    Seriously, you’ll be fine. Lay in some bags of frozen peas and corn. They mold to the side of your face better than ice packs. Just don’t eat them once you’re done using them. Ya know?

  3. Thanks so much…both! Good idea Athanasia! Very… very clever!

  4. Anesthesia never did THAT to me. 🙂 I have 16 teeth left because I can never afford crowns when I need them. The last time I went for a cleaning I asked if I could get half off since I only have half my teeth. The hygienist looked at me like I was trailer park trash for some reason. Good luck… but I’m living testimony you’ll survive.

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