Circling the Drain

I had a tooth extracted this morning, something I haven’t experienced since my teens, when they took out my lower wisdom teeth (I still have the upper ones, but only because they took out two smaller teeth, one on each side, to make room for them).

During my semiannual cleaning two weeks ago the dental tech discovered the gum had receded around the last molar on my lower left jaw, and that a pocket of infection was beginning to form under it. She called in the dentist, who said without question the tooth had to go. I made an appointment for this morning.

I shouldn’t have lost a minute of sleep over it, but I did, and went to my appointment this morning with reluctance and dread. The dentist reassured me. It’s no big deal, it’s not going to progress to other teeth, I’m not going the way of Harvey Weinstein in prison, physically and dentally rotting away.


I mourn my lost tooth. I’m 74, and if losing a molar after 50-plus years of excellent dental health isn’t a sign things are beginning to wind down, I don’t know what is.

The only way out of the miasma I’m in is a session or two of retail therapy. I need a new Stetson. I lust after a new Seiko. Wish me luck selling this idea to Donna, okay?

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