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February 21st, 2006


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12:15 pm - More Fun Than Pulling Teeth
The Marathon was a lot of fun, and I crashed for about 18 hours afterwards. I'm preparing a film-by-film writeup which will naturally only be about halfway done before I let it go, but I wanted to tell a wonderful tale of mid-Marathon madness. I'll try not to get into the truly gory details, as groovy as it would be, but I know some folks are gonna cringe when they read it. This is what we aim for.

Halfway through one of the afternoon films at the 24-hour marathon, I cracked my tooth in half. One of my lower canines on the right side. It's a problem tooth for me, much like its brother on the opposite side of my mouth (the one with the root canal and cap/bridge.) I think this tooth is a dead tooth, anyway. The nerves are long gone. I have weak teeth to begin with, thanks to Dad, and I am chagrined in the fact that no matter how much I brush the damn things, they decay easily. Frankly if I could afford it, I'd just get a set of dentures and say to hell with it. I feel old enough at 31 that I find comfort and solace in that thought, and besides, it's fun scaring people with removable teeth. But anyway.

The tooth cracked on a goddamn piece of Toblerone. I don't even think I was munching on a hazelnut or nougaty bit at that point, either. I just felt part of the tooth separate from the other part and then a little bit of pain in the gums. It would've happened eventually, regardless of the foodstuff, so there's no point in blaming the Toblerone. I felt around in my mouth a little and realized the cracked half was still kinda hanging on to the gum. I couldn't really get a good grip on it with my bare fingers, either (ever grip a tooth with two fingers? Feels like you're biting yourself) so I spent the rest of the film worrying it around with my tongue, trying to see if I could loosen it out.

(Here comes the gory part. Avert your eyes!)

Once there was a break, I went up to the concession stand and, with my empty Coke cup in hand, asked for a second cup, this one with water. I then salted the water with the popcorn salt in full view of the attendant, grabbed a few napkins, and then retired to the side stairwell. I iced up the gum around the tooth, grabbed the tooth chip with some wadded-up napkin, and pulled it right out. Then I rinsed a few times with the salt water until I stopped spitting red, and merrily went on my way. Later on I got a bottle of Tylenol and a teeny bottle of Listerine at the CVS across the street, and I felt fortunate for doing so, as it closed at 8:00. I didn't feel comfortable eating until well after midnight, though.

(Okay, it's stopped being gory now!)

The irony of the situation is that at the time, we were watching 12 MONKEYS. Tooth extraction plays a role in the third act. Thankfully mine wasn't as visceral as Bruce Willis', and I didn't have to use a knife I got after beating up a pimp, but still.

Everybody's got a Life List, one of those mental catalogs of goals achieved and goals left to achieve. Often we cross things off our Life List we didn't even know were listed in the first place. This means I can cross "Pulled a tooth in a movie theater" off my Life List without having listed it. And as an added bonus, I can now accurately and, with authority, tell you which films out of the 13 we saw this year were so bad that pulling teeth was not only a preferable option, but more fun besides.

(14 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:arielblue
Date:February 21st, 2006 06:18 pm (UTC)
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ugh. When I had a tooth fall apart a few months back, I was eating a piece of (not particularly chewy or tough) pizza at the time. At least with Toblerone you didn't have that moment of "fuck, is this a piece of nasty old pepperoni bone in my mouth?"
[User Picture]
From:antikythera
Date:February 21st, 2006 06:27 pm (UTC)
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When I broke my tooth, it was on a baseball. Then I got it fixed, and a year later I lost a fight with a scallion pancake at New Asia and the cap came off. The replacement cap is still there. *knock wood*
[User Picture]
From:derspatchel
Date:February 21st, 2006 06:30 pm (UTC)
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What were you doing eating a basebal-- oh, I get it.
[User Picture]
From:antikythera
Date:February 21st, 2006 06:34 pm (UTC)
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I know I don't quite fit the Canadian stereotype of tooth loss due to a steady diet of hockey pucks.
[User Picture]
From:derspatchel
Date:February 21st, 2006 06:54 pm (UTC)
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Well, you don't play goalie, do you? There you go.
[User Picture]
From:fancycwabs
Date:February 21st, 2006 06:44 pm (UTC)
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One broken tooth was on a piece of sausage, and the other was on one of those lollipops with a Starburst candy in the middle--then again the day after the crown was finished on a piece of chewing gum.
[User Picture]
From:plumtreeblossom
Date:February 21st, 2006 06:53 pm (UTC)
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Frank McCourt has a memorable tooth-loss-in-movie-theatre passage in Angela's Ashes. Young McCourt pulled out a rotten tooth on a piece of toffee. He couldn't go spit the blood out because it would have meant sacrificing the toffee. So he did his best to keep blood and toffee on separate sides of his mouth.
[User Picture]
From:derspatchel
Date:February 21st, 2006 07:17 pm (UTC)
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That's because he was POOR and DESTITUTE and IRISH and a piece of toffee cost him a YEAR'S WAGES or something, right? I think I remember that book.
[User Picture]
From:plumtreeblossom
Date:February 21st, 2006 08:17 pm (UTC)
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Yes, that's exactly it. I believe the movie was a Western, and the toffee was an unbelievably rare treat far a paar Irish baye froom th' lanes.
[User Picture]
From:byrneout
Date:February 21st, 2006 10:24 pm (UTC)
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I had a similar experience when touring Trinity College to look at the Book of Kells. Though in my case, it was a baby molar, and I wasn't so much worried about losing the toffee as I was about turning myself in for eating candy when all the signs clearly said "NO FOOD OR DRINK ALLOWED."

So I sucked the toffee until it dissolved around the tooth and just swallowed the blood any old how, then pretended the minute we exited the building that my tooth had fallen out then and there.

Later in the trip I buried the tooth at the Cliffs of Moher, so that [as my mom put it] there'd always be a piece of me in Ireland. [Shut up. I was 11.] I'm sure it washed out to sea with the first heavy rain, but I hope it freaked out a tourist first.
[User Picture]
From:plumtreeblossom
Date:February 21st, 2006 06:55 pm (UTC)
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Oh, and my own broken teeth -- both broke mysteriously in my sleep.
[User Picture]
From:minkrose
Date:February 21st, 2006 10:26 pm (UTC)
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sounds like you have a tendency to grind your teeth in your sleep.
A lot of people do and never realize it. My mother kept breaking crowns because she does it and now she has a protector-thingie. I think my sister was getting headaches due to it as well.

I seem to have escaped this fate. Not sure how but I have a very low tolerance for stress; I just shut down or I get physically ill.
[User Picture]
From:fancycwabs
Date:February 21st, 2006 08:41 pm (UTC)
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One more and we'll have a meme...
[User Picture]
From:heathbar27
Date:February 21st, 2006 10:04 pm (UTC)
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cringe! cringe! cringe! aie!

I have all my teeth. The one filling I have couldn't be put in until the dentist made the cavity BIGGER. ("You can let it get bigger on its own with pain, or you can let me drill it a little and fill it immediately while you're unconscious. Up to you.") I have no root canals, no caps, no bridges, no broken teeth.

For this, I will be constructing a small altar and offering a sacrifice in flames to the gods of whatever, and also saying a Hail Rob in your name, dude. For lo, you make me appreciate the good things.

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