Teeth 2

If something got stuck in my teeth I think that I could be driven insane by it. I am not sure if I have gotten over the trauma of the orthodontist, and the bizarre tiny tortures my mouth endured for my formative years. when preparing my haphazardly engineered teeth for braces, the orthodontist’s assistant would put tiny rubber bands between them to stretch the spaces enough for the wires. The rubber bands felt like fibers, chunks of meat threaded through the gumline. They could not be sucked out and they would make my entire jaw ache with the pressure of its own immobility.

My face was sore from the age of ten to about fourteen, when I refused the sensible aftercare of my retainer and my teeth grew in rebellion back to a shadow of their original configuration. This was dumb but also gave my teeth some character, an attitude, a pride in its imperfection, which then spread over to my entire being. My teeth are now not quite as white as they were, but they serve me well, which is not bad as I head into the half century mark.

My good dental hygiene plays a role, and when there is anything stuck in my teeth, I consider it a state of emergency. Every meal isn’t completed until my teeth are gently cleaned afterwards. It’s a form of dessert, the brushing and flossing, which sounds austere and monastic but it is actually refreshing. I have to do this because if there is something in my molars, a tender thread of spinach or kale reaching up to tickle the back of my throat, a hard bit of bacon wedged in the cracks, protein particles of dubious origin reminding me constantly that I haven’t been a good custodian of my mouth, I will lose my mind.

It has to do with the pain of orthodontics haunting me orally and also I had a really bad thing in my teeth last year. I had a terrible fruit fly infestation, which crippled me socially, as I could not entertain anyone while I was hosting literally millions of adult flies and larvae. I slapped flies on my arm and would actually catch two of them, in the middle of fly sex, one inseminating the other as they flew slow and heavy in the air above me, their flight path slowed by the intimacy of the act. One fly managed to swoop into my nostril and down into my lungs and I could do nothing but inhale it further to stop feeling it bang against my throat.

I felt something in my teeth, but I didn’t have time to brush and floss so I left it. I thought, I will take care of this in a little while. I don’t need to deal with this now. I felt the little thing there, but I didn’t do anything. The particle dislodged itself and floated around my mouth for a time, but then went back into the space between my teeth. I felt it and finally I caught it with my tongue and put it on my finger for a brief inspection, one of those quick checks where you deduce what it is before swallowing it. It was a fruit fly.

3 thoughts on “Teeth 2

  1. I really wish I hadn’t read this one. I am now infested with the dreaded fruit fly stuck in your teeth story. Sometimes your life is like a Stephen King novel. I would say more but I have to go floss now.
    Ok, I’m back. No. wait…I should floss some more! But even though I may have fruit fly nightmares tonight, I still enjoy your writing and will try to keep up with your blog like I used to. I work at the Bridge Pavilion (a gift shop for the Golden Gate Bridge), and am exhausted after serving people from all over the world for eight hours. But I like it. I wish you could be here for the 75th anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge, all of San Francisco is going nuts over it. Whenever you make it back to SF I hope I can go see you!!

  2. is that like finding a firm, black pubic hair in your tempura?? if my bamboo basket had been filled with cock rather than soba, it could have been a buffet. but, it was a rural setting removed from fellatio. snorting fruit flies — is that like a k-hole?

    thanks so much.

  3. I had an overbite as a child, but we were poor, so my dad took me to an orthodontist school. I had four teeth pulled, and they pushed the rest of my teeth back HARD into my face. After four years, when the braces were removed, I basically looked like I had no teeth, because they were pushed so far back. My nose bent to one side. My chin (already small before) was now seriously recessed. I looked weirder than before the braces.

    Here’s something I learned recently: Having my teeth pushed so far back gave me obstructive sleep apnea. I always wondered why dark circles appeared under my eyes after the braces were on. It was because I kept waking up during the night, when I’d stop breathing during sleep. Constantly interrupted sleep left me tired and depressed. Instinctively, I’d always felt something had gone wrong with me after the braces, but I never understood why, until recently.

    Now the apnea is so bad, if I fall asleep on my back, my throat closes up with aloud noise and I awaken.

    I wish they had left me alone. I had no problem with the overbite.

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