Tuesday, 16 October 2012


Dear Reader,

Whilst munching through a pack of crisps the other day, something odd and unexpected happened. I bit down and encountered something rather more solid than crisp, which I was expecting to basically melt in the mouth. This object did not melt in the mouth, nor did it disintegrate after vigorous chewing. This object was solid. I was excited, had the crisp manufacturer left in the packet something that I could later sue them for?

The object, a little smaller than a fingernail, pointed at one end and thickening towards what I called the base, slightly off-white in colour and quite shiny might have been an artefact from another planet...

It looked like this.
...except it wasn't. At this point, to my horror, I realised that a crown on one of my teeth had vacated my mouth via the most obvious exit and was embedded in my crisps. Upon inspection, there was a gaping hole at the front of my mouth, which had a metal peg sticking out. Not the most attractive look. This could only mean one thing, I would have to go to the dentist.

I work with computers, if I was old enough I might have worked with this a long time ago:

Loving the valves and capacitors, where is the keyboard?
Things have changed:

Loving the blue, still can't find the keyboard though.
This has all happened in a short space of time, approximately seventy years. Let us do this again with dentists tools, some 19th century examples:

Old school.
And spin forward to today:

New school.
There is a problem here. I am pleased that the hammer-like object is no longer a part of the dentist arsenal, but aside from that, things maybe shinier, but they are basically the same. I am told that the "science" of dentistry began in 7000BC, at which point I am sure all that was available was hammers and chisels. Science, indeed.

There is a ton of nuclear-powered equipment driving around Mars at the moment looking for signs of live on the Red Planet, that is science. Accelerating sub-atomic particles to close to the speed of light to simulate conditions that occurred within seconds of the Big Bang, that is science. Reaching for a drill and some pliers to provide dental treatment is a bad mix of medieval torture and DIY. It needs to stop.

There is another issue as well. Nasal hair.

OK, not the prettiest but I have seen much worse.
Given the dentist is quite often looming over the patient / victim one gets a fairly extensive view of his or her nasal hair. Is it too much to be asked that it is trimmed from time to time?

One last thing. I am about halfway through some remedial work to fix the gaping hole left by my vacating crown. This involves taking moulds, much drilling, needles, pliers and all sorts of other nastiness. It also involves colour matching.

Why on earth does it take so long to match the colour of my teeth to one of the stock colours available? How many stock colours can there be? This always leads to a protracted debate between the dentist and dental nurse, with probably a second dentist popping in as well. This conversation happens directly above my prone self whilst I quietly choke to death on my own blood, spittle and the irritating hoover thing that is constantly sucking away at my cheek.

This is all too much. I am going to start hanging around dentists's conventions with a nasal hair trimmer and one of those colour charts you get at a DIY shop when you are buying paint. We know how many shades of grey there are, I wonder how many shades of tooth? As many as fifty?

More soon Dear Reader



  1. Same thing happened to my three year old. Not chips,but a piece of chicken. Bout had me falling out of my chair.

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