Wisdom Teeth Saga: The Surgery Itself (Take One)

Alternate Title: When Things Get Gross


After feeling fairly certain that the first oral surgeon I consulted would kill me and hide my body in the break room mini-fridge, the next surgeon I saw was actually a bigwig at a local military hospital who works out of the dentist’s office in my work building one or two evenings a week. He inspired much more confidence. The office itself? Less so.

Mistake Number Two: Good surgeon does not equate competent office.

October of 2013. I decided to have my surgery on the Thursday before Columbus Day weekend so I’d use one less day of PTO. Sadly, my birthday was Columbus Day.

The dentist’s office quoted me a price for the surgery, I got it scheduled, and away we went.

On the day of the surgery, my mom and aunt drove down, and my mom would stay with me for a day or two. Because even though I was turning 27, I was still a giant baby.


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Wisdom Teeth Saga: The First Consultation

As promised, the true story of the removal of my first three wisdom teeth. Broken down into pieces so I can get them out more easily. Just like the teeth themselves.

August of 2013. After taking an x-ray, my new dentist told me that–contrary to what I’d previously been told–I had wisdom teeth. And they were a mess. “Ratchet,” I believe the kids would say.

Mistake Number One: Not having my wisdom teeth out sooner. When I was a teenager, I had a dentist tell me I actually didn’t have wisdom teeth. When another dentist side-eyed this assertion and tried to send me to an oral surgeon for a better x-ray, I was like, “I don’t wanna!” And my parents said, “…Okay.” (This is also why I never got braces. This is also not a good parenting strategy. THANKS GUYS.)

This allowed my wisdom teeth to grow. To settle in and put down roots.

Roots = bad.

My first consultation was with a surgeon who had extremely hooded eyelids. This concerned me, since I could not see his eyeballs. Also, he seemed to be outright arguing with his nursing staff while I was in the office. Then they heavily pressured me–with lots of huffing and scowling–into paying $400 out-of-pocket for a special x-ray.

The special x-ray machine turned out to be in the break room, so I had my head scanned while surrounded by purses and lunches. Part of the consultation also then took place in the break room, interrupted when one of the nurses came in to tell the surgeon he had a call and to hand him a fistful of change. He proceeded to rant about how much he did not like the person who had called and how he wasn’t going to call them back.

I left feeling almost certain I was going to die.




Bus People: The Boner Grabber

Enjoy this Paint version of the Boner Grabber.

Enjoy this Paint version of the Boner Grabber.

Monday evening, I caught my normal bus home. I sat down in the back, between a small child and a guy in his early thirties. Initially, I was pretty distracted by a super cute guy down the aisle, working on his Sudoku puzzle. Did he have a ring? Did he look single? What do single guys look like? They should wear a button. Eventually, I noticed that the dude to my left kept reaching his hand towards his crotch.

I like to think that if I was on public transit, and some guy was jerking the gherkin through his pants, I’d stand up and loudly call attention to him–complete with cell phone video to put on YouTube to bring the public shaming full circle. “HEY EVERYBODY, THIS GUY IS MASTERBATING ON A PUBLIC BUS. LET’S CALL HIS MOTHER.”

But… I just couldn’t be sure. He would reach and pull at his pants. Then stop. Then grab and rub up near his groin. Then stop. Maybe he had an itch. Maybe he had crabs. Like Medusa, I didn’t want to look directly at him.

I thought about moving, but then the little girl who was crawling all over the next seat, staring up at me with big curious eyes, would be right in his line of sight.

Eventually, he got up and moved to the seat across from me. And I realized–definite boner. Not a very impressive boner, but noticeable nonetheless. However, now he was using one hand to hold on to the pole (the bus pole) and the other arm to shield himself from view. Maybe my furtive side-eye was effective? Maybe he was trying to do some weird dominant stare-down thing? Who knows.

Beware. Beware the Boner Grabber.

Don’t Let Your Wisdom Teeth Be Puttin’ Down Roots

All right blog, you are evidence why I am definitely not ready to have a child. I created you. I brought you into this world. And after weeks of quasi-enthusiasm and all the good intentions, I abandoned you.
I do not want to be a blog-abandoner, neglectful of this product of mine own creation. Dr. Frankenstein wasn’t all, “IT LIVES! Now I’m gonna’ go to Panera. Laters!”
Since I’m having my very last wisdom tooth out in just over a week (I promise to post while on Percocet), I thought that soon it would be time to tell the the tale of the removal of my first three wisdom teeth. Yes, I did try to have them all out at once. The surgery just went SO POORLY that the surgeon said, “You know what? We just have to stop. The surgery needs to be No Longer Happening Right Now. We’ll go back for that last one.”
The story involves vomiting blood and is not for the faint of heart. Like my wisdom teeth, I’ll break it down into pieces for you. Stay tuned.

Conversations with my Mother: “If I had a child…”

I was going through some old emails, and found a conversation with my mother that I had typed up to send to a friend to share in my bafflement.

Mom and I had just watched a news segment about renting toys for children.

Mom: I don’t like that idea. If I had a child-
Ctina: Mom, you did have a child.
Mom: No, I mean if I had a CHILD-
Ctina: Mom. You DID have a child.
Mom: No, you don’t count.
Ctina: But I was a child at one point.
Mom: No, you don’t count. You’re HUGE. I mean a CHILD.



Tales from the Panty Bar: My Last Day

Five years spent working in a popular lingerie store digs into my memory like ill-fitting underwire into a ribcage.

Five years spent working in a popular lingerie store digs into my memory like ill-fitting underwire into a ribcage.

Quitting in a storm of blazing glory is every disgruntled employee’s dream. Unfortunately, when I had my last day at Lingerie Store, I wasn’t certain if it was my last day. I was moving to D.C. without a job lined up, and I couldn’t be sure if I would need to transfer stores. So as much as I wanted to light my bridges on fire and watch them burn, I couldn’t.

If only I could send a note back to 2011, it would say, “Yell at the man with the stained brown women’s underwear.”

On my last day, I was working the cash register. I believe it was a weekday, so things were fairly slow. At Lingerie Store, our return policy was to take back everything. EVERYTHING. (I had many thoughts on this topic. None of them good.) So this man, with his two teenage daughters in tow, approaches the register and puts down a bag, saying that he’d like to exchange these underwear. No, he doesn’t have a receipt.

I pull the underwear out of the bag. Firstly, they are old. They’re a style we haven’t had in a few years. Secondly, THEY ARE COVERED IN BROWN STREAKS. EVERYWHERE. Not just the inside. I… I just don’t even know how this could have occurred. Did someone run out of toilet paper? Did someone pour coffee right into the bag and then let it sit in the car for three years? No idea what I was looking at.

There was a moment–a moment that had the potential to be beautiful–where I laid out the stained underwear and looked the man dead in the eyes. This was it. The moment where I could have finally let a customer with a gross return just have it.

But I didn’t.

I did manage to say, “Do I even want to know what happened to these?” And he just shrugged, as his teenage daughters pranced around the store looking for the frilly pink underwear they wanted in exchange.

The only burning that took place was from the scalding water I used to wash my hands afterwards.