The Truth about the Pain of Wisdom 2/6/99

Dear Mr. Steele

I had a wisdom tooth pulled two days ago and the truth is I'm miserable. So there. Beat that.


Holy Crap, do I know how that feels (see The Truth about The Dentist).

I found the intense agony of having a wisdom tooth extracted to be highly underrated. The first night was the worst. Those pain-killers started wearing off and Ow turned into OW turned into <repeated expletives deleted for our more Sensitive Readers> (as if I had any of those).

Root Canal was a day in the park. With a dog. And a frisbee. A sunny day ... 72 degrees exactly with a slight breeze. And they were shooting photographs for the next Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue and Elle McPhearson really liked my dog. Root Canal was that fun.

But wisdom teeth ... it was as though it took my body three full days to realize just how much it hurt and let me know about it. I'd fall into a drug-induced sleep thinking, 'This will begin to feel better tomorrow.' And it just ... kept ... not.

What really sucked about wisdom teeth was not smoking (I'm still not smoking by the way) (er ... still not smoking cigarettes) (cigars aren't bad for you are they?) But it wasn't even just the not smoking -- it was the cruel way the dentist informed me that I wouldn't be smoking. There is a way to do this and a way not to do this. Allow me to illustrate.

DENTIST: I know you think smoking makes you cool Dirtwad -- but for the next week you're not going to be nearly as cool. Deal with it.


You see a funny thing happens to us as human beings when we're in pain for four days: we get irritable. Really, it's true. And an equally funny thing happens when you stop smoking: you get irritable. Combine these two happy events into one package, and we go beyond funny. It was downright hysterical, is what it was. A Laugh Riot. It was Richard Pryor-funny. I laughed and I laughed and I laughed.

I so badly wanted to drive to my dentist's house and explain to him my Very Funny Joke. And then I wanted to explain it to his wife, his kids, his parents, former classmates, his dog and cats ... anyone who might think it was as funny as I did. Fortunately, the actual pain kept us all safe from bodily harm and/or incarceration.

I'm sure he thinks he's gotten the last laugh. No way. My next cleaning -- as per George Carlin -- I'm gonna eat an entire box of Oreos. Without milk.

Wanna dance with me Doc? Allright-then. Let's Dance.