Tooth Stranger Than Fiction

teethI present you with compelling proof that not everything I wrote in Black Chalk is fiction. I apologise for quoting myself, and it’s not a habit I intend to form, but here, from page 172 (hardback):

“Have you noticed how the dentist always arranges the most painful procedures to take place at two thirty? Ha, tooth hurty! Starts drilling at tooth hurty two.”

Today, I’m about to have a bridge put in my mouth. To do this, the dentist has to form two crowns either side to hold the bridge in place, which means he has to shave down two of my teeth with something… I don’t know what exactly, something terrifying. (Someone actually just started drilling next door as I typed these words.)

Meanwhile novocaine doesn’t work very powerfully on me. I need to have perhaps a dozen injections in my gum before it numbs. (We discovered this last time I went as I screamed out in agony. Dentist: “Oh, you can feel that?”)

Plus, I’m scared of needles on account of the fact that I was an anaemic child who suffered from nosebleeds every few days and therefore had to have needles shoved into my young arm on a weekly basis.

So when I phoned the dentist to arrange this thrilling procedure, when do you think was the one time-slot available?

“The only time we can do this week, Mr Yates, is tooth-hurty.”

I took it.

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