Monday, July 28, 2014


My dentist (Dr. Leon Wachtel) is an artiste.  I went to see him today because I (thought I) had broken off a crown Saturday night biting through some very tough crust on a microwaved leftover pizza.  At least that's what it looked like to me when I gazed in the mirror at the scrubby little stub where my tooth had once been.  

I called his office first thing this morning and asked for an ASAP appointment.  I was told he could see me at 2:20 this afternoon.  So I went, with some misgivings.  Those concerned the price of a new crown.  (I apparently had swallowed and  . . . digested . . . the old one and it was nowhere . . . to . . . be . . . found.)

After some chat he looked in my mouth and said "Oh, that wasn't a crown, it was just a composite.  I'm going to just build you a new tooth."  

I said "you mean I don't need a crown?"  (Idiot!)

He said "well, you can have one if you want one."

I quickly said "no, no, no, that's okay."

I had told him I needed it quickly because I was expecting a call any time from Michael McConaughey's people asking me to double for him in his next movie.  I tried out my "all right . . . all right . . . all right" line but no one seemed impressed.

To make a long story short, he built me a composite tooth which looks and feels just like the old one and I am good to go.

It's great to have a good dentist, even if he doesn't get my humor sometimes.

Oh, he said my mouth is full of tartar and I need to schedule a cleaning.  That's now set for September.

Rain update: it's been raining hard all around us today but only a few light sprinkles here.


Phil Perisich said...

I am not sure what a composite tooth is but last I heard a new crown is $900 and my prices are always behind times.

Catalyst/Taylor said...

It is built up of material in the dentist's office, shaped and polished and the price is much less than that for a new crown.

Lowandslow said...

A good dentist is like a good doctor / mechanic / plumber / etc....if you find one, don't ever let him/her go.

joeh said...

Scott is right on about that.
I think you probably could stand in for Michael McConaughey...Matthew McConaughey...not so much!

Tom Cochrun said...

Yea on the Michael McConaughey vibe. Must have been your elation over getting off without a new crown that confused your mind, that or you are watching films none of the rest of us are seeing.

Jager said...

My dentist is a 2nd generation dental artist, his dad made the stainless steel teeth for the big guy in the old Bond movie and countless sets of vampire fangs over the years plus sets of decayed hillbilly teeth we've all seen in films.

I had two front teeth knocked playing hockey in high school and have had the bridge replaced countless times. The missing teeth affected my other teeth and I've spent thousands getting repairs over the years. My dentist took a look and said let's fix you up for once and for all. Two implants and a titanium mounted bridge later it all works, it looks good, feels good and it works. I damn near had a heart attack at the price but....

Catalyst/Taylor said...

Michael, Matthew . . whatever!

Stephen Hayes said...

A good dentist is a treasure. I've been with mine for over twenty-five years.

Denturist said...

It's important that every doctor completes his/her task on time. And in this is the best example that the crown was implanted on time. I loved this short story and it stands as an inspiration for me.