Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Dentist

My dentist is probably the coolest dentist ever. Not only does Dr. Ken Garcia have an immaculate, modern office and a TV for every patient, but he is also a surfer and a musician, with long flowing hair and a Jimi Hendrix plaque on the wall by reception. And he's just the nicest guy. I’ve never had an unpleasant experience in his office, and was just in today having my teeth cleaned. All good.

But what is it about sitting in the dentist’s chair—even though I have been blessed with good teeth and the coolest dentist ever—that makes me squirm and sweat? It’s not even the scraping of the dental tools, I don’t think. There’s just something about lying on my back, with a ridiculous paper bib on and the dental hygenist’s hands in my mouth, that makes me feel completely helpless and triggers a primal sense of uneasiness. From the dark recesses of my brain comes the thought: this person could help me, but then again she could just as easily kill me.

If you turn out to
be an evil dentist, I

will probably bite.


  1. I laughed at your mention of the Jimi Hendrix "plaque" in a dentist's office - imagining that, just as cathedrals preserve relics of the saints such as Saint Paul's fingernails or Saint Mark's femur, it might be a secret fad among dentists to display dental remnants of the rich and famous... Johnny Cash's bicuspid or the crown that James Dean once wore on his six-year molar.

  2. David S, unintended punning on my part! I wasn't thinking of dental plaque when I wrote it--it's really one of those wooden plaques with burnt-looking edges and a picture affixed to the front, kind of like a summer camp art project--but that is too funny. Dentists could collect some pretty creepy stuff if they wanted to...