Saturday, February 23, 2008


"I hope you have dental insurance."

Who would have thunk that a simple sentence would come back to haunt me, and as soon as it did even.

One of my favorite candies growing up was "Bottlecaps." And if you dont know what these are, or if you do not like them, then I dont know how we can be friends. Bottlecaps are incredible pieces of sugary goodness flavored like soda pop. You have your typical candy flavors of orange, strawberry, and grape, but what makes these candies so awesome is root beer and cola. Simply yummy.
Well it had been awhile since I had some, so I picked up a box at the store one day and got re-hooked. Maybe more like addicted. And in the following two weeks, I consumed roughly a dozen theatre size boxes of them. Addicted indeed.

Now, flash back to about two years ago. Blanca and I went to the beach, the first and only time in our relationship that we ever did so. We were in the water, playing in the waves, and a mighty big one was heading towards us. Nothing dangerous, just a big one to have fun with.
She was standing in front of me, as as the wave approached, she jumped up into the air. Unfortunately for me, her head smacked into my chin, cracking my teeth together, chipping one of the front ones.
For two years I lived with the chipped tooth, not really thinking anything of it. Not really thinking if I should be eating this or that, just going about my normal eating habits. Perhaps that was a mistake. Perhaps my eating habits had nothing to do with what was about to happen.

Flash back even further than the beach incident. Go back, maybe three or four years. Honestly, I forget exactly when, but thats the rough time frame.
I went to the dentist to have some work done. The guy was super nice, and after the first appointment with him, I would have been thrilled if he stayed my regular dentist forever. That was not to be the case, and my opinion of him was about to change.
After one of the follow up appointments I got home to notice, upon smiling at myself in the mirror, that my two front teeth had been filed down. Without my consent. Without even talking to me first. The guy just took it upon himself to do it. If he had done a decent job, I wouldnt have had issue, but he kinda filed em too far and not exactly evenly. In the process, my right front tooth ended up damaged. The same tooth that would become chipped in the Pacific.
Did I complain to the dentist about his shoddy, unapproved, work? Well, I would have except that I went to my next appointment only to find that the entire office had packed up and left. No, seriously, they were gone and nobody knew where they went to. Oh well.

So, we start with bad dental work, we continue to a chipped tooth at the beach, and we continue even more to an addiction to the sugary bliss of Bottlecaps. But where does it all lead?
Well, two Fridays ago, Im laying in bed and I bit down onto something and, that chipped part of my tooth finally broke away. In all honesty, its not a huge missing piece, but its a divot and to me its huge. And because it exists, I tend not to smile as much. And if Im talking to someone I just know theyre staring right at it. It has made me even more self conscious than I already was. And now I fear food and have started to shy away from certain things scared I might mess it up some more. I hope I wont be like this forever.

One final flash back. This time to the sixth grade. Yeah, that far back. Were all on the grass playing field hockey and I was running behind a kid after the ball and he went to take a shot and the follow through of his stick smacked me in the side of the head, causing two different injuries - a deviated septum and a, for lack of a proper term, misaligned jaw.
Because of the jaw injury, Ive always been reluctant to take pictures, or even to look people straight on. Thats why even when I do take pictures, youll rarely see me smile. So for those of you that have wondered why I always look so "pissed off" there ya go.

So now I have a misaligned jaw, a tooth with a divot, and I appear to be guilty of the original and most serious of the seven deadly sins... vanity. Oh well, one down, six to go.

Until next time...

-- DBW --

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