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Art Noble

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Member Since: Aug, 2007

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By Art Noble
Saturday, August 25, 2007

Not rated by the Author.

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Have you ever been to a dentist?

This is not a story about wisdom. It is about the extraction of a wisdom tooth. Mine. But, no one would read a story titled, “My Wisdom Tooth Extraction.” Wisdom is a better title. One could say having it pulled was wise, as far as wisdom goes in this story. And, this gives me something to do while the Novocain wears off.

One should begin at the beginning, and the beginning is anywhere I want it. The story could start, . . . “I was born with four, fully developed wisdom teeth . . .” but that is another beginning. Or, it could start with the oral surgeon’s knee firmly planted on my chest, wrestling with my tooth as an angler with a giant marlin. I’m very smart you know,
and once had the oversized wisdom teeth to prove it.

Perhaps, entering the surgeon’s office is the best. His staff of bureaucratic Stepford drones, shoved a stack of form at me with a dull pencil stub, and demanded them back immediately. I wrote with wood covered graphite as fast as possible, rather than face them to request another pencil. Shortly after I passed them back through the opening in the riveted iron enclosure the surgical assistant appeared. Igor’s hunch was less obvious than it was in the movie, but still discernable to the untrained eye.

I was led into a dimly lighted room where the surgeon performed the exam under a very hot, closely placed flood lamp. He poked around with a rusty ice pick, occasionally tapping it with a meat mallet to check for sensitivity. X-Rays were required. The nurse had me strip naked to lay on the icy cold X-Ray table. She giggled at my discomfort. At least, I think it was my discomfort? Oh well. The antiquated machine arced and sparked as it rotated around my head. The nurse took the lead shield out of my mouth – I had wished it were elsewhere – and led me back to the examining room after I dressed.

In a few minutes, I was led down a flight of cobbled steps, candles lighting the way. I should have known something was not quite right, but you know me. When we reached the bottom of the steps, we turned left to enter the chamber, pardon, surgical procedure room. I was a little startled by the Iron Maiden, but not too worried until placed in the slatted operating chair, wrists and ankles manacled tightly to its arms and legs. It was then I noticed the various sets of chains, pulleys and attachments bolted into the hewn stone walls.

Using a multi-pronged hypodermic with bent tips, he injected some substance he called Novocaine in front of and behind my errant tooth. Waiting only a moment, Igor grabbed the supraotic grapnel (also, euphemistically called an “eyebrow pack”) and firmly placed it over my eyebrows, the hooks over my eyes , pulling my head back with the chain hoist. This restrained my head so the surgeon could pull the tooth from a non-moving substrate.

Once in place, the surgeon cut away two or three inches of gum in order to have clear access to the tooth. He then took the bent pliers with the ratchet lock, and began ratchet-ing down on the tooth. Once locked, the struggle began. Twisting, and turning Using the trampolines on either side of the chair, he would fly into the air over me, firmly gripping the pliers at all times. Becoming bored with the fight, he started twisting, turning and going into various contorted positions while air borne. I would have rated his performance at 8.55, had he not landed on my chest with his knee at the end, then gave a hard yank to finally extract the wasted beastie. Six point three is the best I can do after that.

After the bleeding stopped, maybe a pint or so, and I was too weak to do anything, they unlocked the manacles and let me out of the chair. I stumbled up the cobbled steps and wound up at the cash register where my credit card was maxed out.
And that is how it was. . . almost.

I was ordered to eat soft food following the two minute surgery that actually took three twists and two gentle turns with a slight tug to remove the beastie. In order to self-justify the massive, homemade malted milkshakes with gobs of chocolate syrup and raw eggs, I had to make up this story about the loveliest people in the business. And there you have it.

PS The greatest inconvenience was weight gain due to milkshake consumption. XXX

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Reviewed by Tami Ryan 10/27/2007
Great story! (and terrific use of similies too!)

Welcome to AuthorsDen - albeit a wee bit late. It's good to have you here, my friend!

Reviewed by Vivian DeSoto 8/31/2007
Loved it, great story! I have a similar story and a similar experience -- all true! Good laugh. That's exactly how I felt going into the dentist office that fateful day. Let 'em rot, I say!

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