“Happiness is your dentist telling you it won’t hurt and then having him catch his hand in the drill.”

Not only has fall unofficially begun on Cape Cod but so has chartered bus season. On my way to the dentist this morning, my reason for the lateness of the hour, I saw four buses filled with what I used to say were old folks but now I think of as my contemporaries. I have no idea what is on their itineraries as we don’t travel in the same circles, but I do see the buses parked at a variety of motels on Route 28, mostly in Yarmouth. They’ll fill restaurants and motels during the week, the slow part of this shoulder season. It’s a good thing.

I hated the dentist when I was a kid. The one my father took me to was a sadist who used neither novocaine nor gas. The dentist was really old and had been my father’s dentist. I swear he pressed a foot pedal to keep his drill spinning. It was always painful, and tears would silently run down my cheek. I would grasp the arms of the chair with all my strength, and I swear I left indentations of my fingers on the undersides of the arms. That put me off dentists for years unless I had a toothache. It was only when I needed to have them perfect for Peace Corps that I forced myself to go. The dentist, who was near school, was basically painless as long as I didn’t look at the novocaine needle. My father nicely agreed to pay the bill as I had rotted my teeth on his time. After that it would be my responsibility. I go to the dentist every six months to have my teeth cleaned. He is the same dentist I started with in 1972, and I don’t mind him at all though that novocaine needle still looks so long I don’t know why it doesn’t reach through my cheek. Today my hygienist told me I do a good job with the brushing and flossing. I should have gotten a star.

I stopped at a farm star on my way home and also at the store for a few groceries. I got some native tomatoes and honey crisp apples at the stand and rolls and lettuce at the store. I’m thinking a BLT for lunch.

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18 Comments on ““Happiness is your dentist telling you it won’t hurt and then having him catch his hand in the drill.””

  1. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I had a sadist dentist, too. He was my mother’s when she was a kid and I still don’t know why she sent us to him if she thought he was awful. He was not the only dentist in town. He was not even the only cheap dentist in town.
    It put me off dentists for a very long time to the detriment of my teeth, sadly. Half my teeth aren’t mine and half of the half that are are mostly reconstructed.
    I love my present dentist, though. If Medicare doesn’t pay for him, I will still go there. He listens and he does not judge me for my dentist paranoia. 🙂

    Today started out sunny and warm but it has turned grey and there’s a cold breeze blowing in the windows. Very fall-like. No buses full of old people around here. Nothing worth taking a bus trip to see. 🙂

    I ordered a Russian ushanka and it came. It’s coyote fur and it fits nicely. So I ordered a snowblower to go with it. Winter will probably be balmy with no appreciable accumulation of the dreaded white stuff because I’M READY! 😀

    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      My father’s dentist did the same thing to me. I would only go to a dentist from about the seventh grade until I had almost graduated from college and needed my teeth fixed before I went overseas if I had a toothache.

      I am so good now about going. I have a dental insurance which pays for the 2 cleanings a year and a bit of any work done.
      It is cloudy and getting chilly herts as well. I shut the windows in here as I was feeling the breeze.

      I have a white ushanka with a Russian soldier emblem on the front. It is a part of my hat collection.

      Have a great evening!

  2. Hedley Says:

    By rumor, Mr. im6 is now enjoying the limited happiness associated with “Happy Valley” My guess is that somewhere in deepest Texas all the doors are locked as the very lovely Sarah Lancashire (she of Tango fame) locks horns with the incredibly naughty Tommy.

    Meanwhile up in Toronto “Love and Mercy” , the bio pic of one Brian Wilson is playing to rave reviews – the BBC gave it 5 stars and yelled fab-gear.

    Its friggin freezing here and I needed a jacket to walk today. I am taking the Prince to see the Tigers on Sunday and Verlander is pitching, I wonder if I should mention that I saw the photos with Kate Upton ?

    • katry Says:

      MDH,
      No, I wouldn’t mention you saw Kate’s photos.

      I sometimes do marathon sessions of a program for the purpose of catching up. Most are programs I DVR and have 5 or 6 recorded.

      Cold here too but not jacket chilly. Well maybe it could be but I haven’t been out pond, just trips from the house to the car to wherever to the car. We did do the dump at 3:00, and it seemed okay, no wind off the tundra.

  3. olof1 Says:

    I’ve always had the best dentists in the world 🙂 The first one always played with me for quite some time before he did anything else. After when he had finished the job he always gave me a dinky toys car. Oh how I wish I had saved them because today those are worth a fortune 🙂

    Only one was a bit distraught and sometimes drilled in my tongues or once in the wrong tooth 🙂 She was usually more interested in gossiping witrh the nurse than to actually check what she was doing 🙂 I’ve never used anything like novocaine or gas and that has to do with that first dentist I think.

    Chartered bus season is over here now, they come all spring and summer to watch the historical buildings, ruins and tombs. But those tourists I like, the crane torits however is a pain in the a.. 🙂

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      I really like my dentist. He and I have been together over 40 years. It was just after he opened his office that I started seeing him.

      We all have those sorts of toys, the ones we regret we didn’t save.

      My teeth are quite sensitive so not having a numb mouth is pretty painful. Neil, my dentist, checks to make sure I don’t feel any pain.

      I don’t mine the bus tourists. They give the after-summer economy a boost. The summer tourists are like your crane tourists, and I get frustrated by August.

      Have a wonderful evening!

  4. jacobsinaq Says:

    I had a great dentist growing up he was in the mall and I was always excited to go to the dentist because he was in the mall.

    • katry Says:

      jacob,
      Yours is the first dentist I have ever heard with an office in a mall. I would have been pretty excited were my dentist there. I’d head to the book store first after convincing my mother of how awful the experience was and how I need a treat.

  5. Coleen Says:

    Hated my dentist as a kid. He was excellent in terms of his work, but he had the bedside manner of a cobra…I am encouraged by the postings of my KTCC bretheren who have found the dentist of their dreams…perhaps I will, too, somday… 🙂

    • katry Says:

      Coleen,
      If you ever move to the cape, I have the dentist for you. Other than that I wish I could help you.

      Maybe you’ll have to flash your teeth around to a few different dentists before you find your dream dentist.

  6. flyboybob Says:

    Like you my parent’s dentist would sing the song ‘It Only Hurts For A Little While’ as he drilled away. No novicane or laughing gas for kids back then along with no fluoride in the water supply to protect the teeth. I remember the controversy over fluoridation. By putting fluoride in the water it has kept my kids teeth cavity free. Back in the 60s it was condemned as a communist plot by the opponents. Flouradation of the water supply is under attack again. This time it’s from the parents of kids who suffer from autism. The parents can’t decide if autisim is caused by fluoride or childhood vaccinations neither of which ideas are backed up with any scientific evidence.

    Dentistry is one of the best professions. Decay begins with amalgam fillings which soon break down requiring even larger restorations. Eventually they are replaced by a series of crowns followed by root canals. Eventually the root canal fails and the teeth are replaced by bridges. Finally the only choice is dentures or implants if you are among the one percent of wealthy people. A couple of implants cost as much as a compact new car.

    I have put several dentist’s kids through college over the years.

    A cool front came through this morning bringing cooler temperatures and some rain. Yesterday we had a high of 101 degrees bad today hit about 85. The Canadian cold air is coming tomorrow with a high of 70 degrees.

    • katry Says:

      Bob,
      If I hadn’t gone into the Peace Corps, I don’t know how long I might have gone without seeing the dentist, but once I had finished all the dental work, I have been really good. I see the dentist every six months. I had a tooth pulled a couple of months ago, but it was a wisdom tooth which few of us still have after this long. Now I still have one left.

      I had to have fillings from when I was a kid replaced. They could be seen as they had turned dark. My two front teeth looked awful. Now they look good.

      I have a couple of caps. Both were the rest of a fall which damaged the two teeth, two front teeth.

      I haven’t had the history you have had with my teeth. My caps didn’t require root canals, and I don’t have a bridge. Only the two front caps are the fake teeth.

      101˚ this time of year is horrible. This is when it should be cooling off. My sister from Colorado called and they’re expecting 33˚ and maybe some rain/snow mix. Even for them it is early. They usually get snow in October.

      Tonight is warmish and today was lovely. 70˚ is usually perfect for me.

  7. Jay Bird Says:

    Ow, Kat, you bring back the bad old days! My dentist was our next-door neighbor. Nice guy, but never used novocaine for fillings. I guess it was an extra charge, and my mother told him to skip it. I started novocaine with my first extraction and it was wonderful! No flouride in our water either, Bob. Same results.

    Now I’m on a “dental plan” which is accepted by a limited number of DDS, mostly in dingy offices near the Greyhound station. Rotating dentists. Some have been great, others not so much. But it is cheap.

    I admire dentists. Their days are endless lines of people with bad teeth, they have to be really smart medically, and must have incredible manual dexterity. It’s a job that’s done by hand!

    • katry Says:

      Jay,
      I adore my current (40+ years) dentist , and I think anyone willing to put a hand in so many mouths needs to be commended. The worst thing is a toothache. I know because I suffered for a whole weekend with one.

      I too am on a dental plan but it doesn’t restrict my choice of a dentist.

      I still have the worst memories of the pain inflicted by that dentist not using novocaine. He ruined it for me, and I avoided the dentist at all costs until I was forced to get my teeth filled and fixed.

      Now kids are brought to the dentist early, and many dentists are especially for kids. My parents were of the generation that you went to doctors and dentists only if something was wrong. Luckily our generation was able to change that tradition.


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