Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Spies, Cries, and Dentist Guys

by Julie Coulter Bellon

**Disclaimer** This blog contains some ickiness. If you are squeamish, please proceed at your own risk.

One of my favorite television shows, Alias, is about a very strong woman who is a spy. Unfortunately, in one of the episodes, she is captured and is being tortured by having her back teeth ripped out with pliers. To her credit, she doesn’t give up any information, but I cringed when I saw it.

I would make a horrible spy.

As soon as that guy started coming for me with the pliers I would give up any information I had.

In a heartbeat.

I think there are some dentists, however, that took lessons from the torture dude. I recently met one.

One of my back teeth started becoming very sensitive to cold a couple of weeks ago. Not horribly sensitive, but I noticed a little ache. Then it got worse. Pretty soon, both cold and hot made it hurt and I wasn’t able to chew on that side. But the pain wasn’t that bad, so I bore with it. For over a week. On a Friday, when I could no longer eat or drink, or even have my tongue touch the tooth, I caved and called the dentist. Unfortunately, he couldn’t fit me in until Monday morning. So I suffered through the weekend (it was a great weight loss program though. Not eating and barely drinking lukewarm water for an entire weekend, I mean.). Monday morning I was in the dentist’s chair and he came in smiling.

That should have been my first clue.

"How are we today?" he asks. "Horrible," I say. I proceed to tell him my tale of woe and he leans me back in the chair. Still smiling. Getting out his pointy instruments, he touches my sore tooth with them. I grip the arms of the chair, but amazingly, I don’t scream out in pain, only shoot daggers of death at the dentist with my eyes. "Sensitive to cold?" he asks, still smiling. "Yes," I assure him.

As if he doesn’t believe me, he gets a shot of cold water and shoots it directly on the tooth. This time I sat straight up in the chair clutching my mouth because it felt like he’d just plunged a dagger into my head and my brains had exploded all over the office. "That one hurt, did it?" he asks. I couldn’t speak by this point because I was moaning in pain, trying not to let him see me dissolve into a mass of tears on the spot. "On a scale of one to ten, with natural childbirth being ten, how painful would you say that was?" he asks, still smiling.

I wanted to hurt him. Badly.

He then tells me I need a root canal and that quite possibly the infection has gone through my tooth’s roots into my bone. He even drew me a picture. And sent me to a specialist because it was so bad.

Before I left, he asked me if I ever based any of the characters in my books after real people. I smiled and said, you never know, but as I looked at him I was imagining the evil torture guy pulling teeth out of the heroine’s mouth, and how she suddenly pulls her hands free of the ropes and subdues him, before escaping. Maybe after she subdues him in a really awesome, kick butt sort of way, she could ask, "on a scale of one to ten, with natural childbirth being ten, how painful would you say that was?" before she left.

Wouldn’t that be an awesome beginning to a book?

(And just so you know, I really do love my dentist. Honest.)


At 4/19/2007 4:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Too funny, Julie! Sorry you had to go through all that. Will we see the evil dentist in one of your next books?

At 4/19/2007 5:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would have told that dentist that I've had plenty of dental work that hurt more than natural childbirth, which I've done twice. The post-surgical pain after my gall bladder was worse, too. And that time I broke my ankle.

Hope you get that tooth patched up and feeling better in less time than most labors. Too bad you won't get any cute, cuddly baby at the end of this ordeal.

At 4/19/2007 5:33 PM, Blogger Julie Coulter Bellon said...

Yeah, I was really sorry I didn't get a cute cuddly baby out of it. Instead I got a large bill for a lot of cold hard cash. :(

I honestly do think that I might base a character in my next book off of my dentist. That would be funny!

At 4/19/2007 7:32 PM, Blogger G. Parker said...

reminds me of True Lies...You probably haven't seen it, but theres a great scene where Swartsinager (I ain't spelling it...sorry) has been shot full of truth serum and the torturer is ready to start pulling remind me of that. My hubby asks if you ever saw Marathon Man with Dustin Hoffman...ugh!!!
Hope you get it taken care of soon!!

At 4/19/2007 11:44 PM, Blogger Annette Lyon said...

Julie--this was priceless!!!

Model your next villain after him, definitely. Then NAME him after him HAHAHAAAAA!!!!

My worst dentist didn't seem to care that the shot hadn't taken effect yet. "Not numb? Oh well, I'm running behind schedule." And he'd start drilling. ACK!!!! Yeah. We switched dentists pretty quick after that. The psycho.

At 4/20/2007 1:58 PM, Blogger Julie Coulter Bellon said...

I've never seen Marathon Man. Sorry! :(

Annette, I'm telling you, some of these guys just enjoy their jobs a little too much. Seriously. :)

And I did get the tooth taken care of. All is well and I can now eat, drink, and be merry with the rest of you!

At 4/20/2007 3:44 PM, Blogger Marnie Pehrson said...

Did you know that dentists have the highest suicide rate of any medical-related professional? Probably because they're the only people we actually pay to torture us. Guilt... pure and simple... guilt.

Seriously, its true. My dad (a dentist) often quoted that statistic. Amazingly enough he's a gentle man with a calming influence. He retired a couple years ago, and I sorely miss having him for my dentist. The alternative is painful for my teeth and my pocket book.

But I'm not the only one lamenting. People used to drive from other states to have him work on their teeth, he was that good. It also didn't hurt that he never got out of the 1970's with his pricing. :)


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