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Lost And Confound

I went to an oral surgeon today. Yeah, don't ask. I will say that this wasn't the visit where they actually do the work, this was the one where they tell you how much the subsequent visit is going to cost. What a great racket, dentistry. At least kidnappers have to go through the trouble of cutting letters out of newspaper to make a ransom note; oral surgeons just tap your teeth with a miniature pick for thirty seconds and then demand a suitcase full of unmarked hundred dollar bills if you ever see your bicuspids again. As a kid I got 50¢ for each tooth that fell out; now I have to pony up a grand for each one I wanna keep.

Anyway, I also had to fill out a bunch of forms. One was a seemingly standard questionnaire, will all sorts of predictable queries like "How often do you brush?" and "Do hot or cold beverages cause you discomfort." But the penultimate question struck me as a bit odd. I read -- I kid you not -- "How would you feel about losing your teeth?"

Ummm, why do you ask? Is that likely? Is this so you can plan what "collection strategy" your goons will employ if I miss a payment? Or maybe, if someone answers "No biggie," they let Mycroft the intern handle that patient's bridgework.

Honestly, I had no idea what to write? "That would be a bummer" just didn't seem to do the question justice. Ultimately I left it blank, though not before considering "Relieved that I would no longer have to answer questions this stupid."

Posted on September 06, 2006 to Storytelling