Friday, March 03, 2006

And if you stroke it, it turns into a suitcase

A moment of silence please, in sympathy with our good friend Randall, whose wisdom teeth have erupted this week as is their wont, without warning or provocation, causing alarm and despondency among the innocent civilian population of Missouri. Perhaps we should rename them muslim teeth.

I know from bitter experience precisely what lies ahead for poor Randall, having had mine out just last year. I only did it to get my dentist to shut up. From the very second he caught sight of them he became a man obsessed, showing every sign of viewing their possession as a deliberate provocation, or perhaps a disgusting perversion akin to child molestation. And so my hitherto blameless back four had to go.

I’m told that this is pretty much par for the course among American dentists, and not just for the whacking fee they charge, but (if the flying-spittle-flecked harangues were any guide) out of a genuine cult-like fervour to eliminate wisdom teeth wherever they might be found. It’s possible that the American Dental Association is building some sort of underground lair out of them or something, but more likely they’re just a key ingredient in Titleist™ golf balls.

I sometimes wonder why I succumbed. In the end, it wasn’t worth the hassle of arguing with an ex-navy dentist while he had both Popeye-sized forearms in my mouth up to the elbow with a drill. When my doctor tried a similar line on my foreskin, on the other hand, she met rock. I don’t care what nonsense they trot out about splits, impacted glands, and HIV virus retention, no-one is going to wave a knife near my knob, period.

And circumcision is just as much a secular sacred cow in the States as the War on Wisdom. I don’t know how on Earth the Yanks managed to talk themselves into it in the first place, but there we are. Did a certain ethnic group disproportionately represented in the medical profession and with particular expertise in the practice con the dim-bulb goyim with health scares so they could earn a little extra cash? No, that’s just crazy talk. Whatever the reason, so deep rooted is the cultural norm now that you have to tell incredulous nurses several times over, very slowly, read-my-lips fashion, that No, thank you very much, we don’t want him circumcised, no, no he won’t get AIDS, and no, it is possible to shower properly with a foreskin, so no – I said NO! take another step and I’ll twat you with a chair you glassy-eyed bitch now put that scalpel down and FUCK OFF!

Regular readers will know that we Terribles are on countdown for child #4, due in July. We discovered last week that it’s a boy. I can see already that I’m going to be beating the snip-happy bastards off with a baseball bat…

Some wisdom teeth, yesterday. Aren’t you glad I didn’t go with the circumcision pic? I certainly am.


Desargues said...

Are those your mighty molars, Ivan? Maybe you should take a larger picture of them, and place it somewhere high up on your blog. Disprove once and for all that piece of rampant mythology about the Brits and their teeth.

The War on Wisdom (my, they really have a penchant for wars on abstract nouns!) and the continued existence of phrases like "too clever by half" make me worry about the prospects of a sharp intellect thriving in America. Gotta be on acount of some misguided adherence to the literal truth of that Biblical adage, "Beati pauperes spiritu : quoniam ipsorum est regnum cælorum." (Mt. 5.3)

Tony said...

No, thank you very much, we don’t want him circumcised, no, no he won’t get AIDS, and no, it is possible to shower properly with a foreskin, so no – I said NO! take another step and I’ll twat you with a chair you glassy-eyed bitch now put that scalpel down and FUCK OFF!

I've used reason with people, making arguments that any human with a brain should be able to comprehend. Unfortunately, We Americans don't get it. Whenever I get around to having kids, I'm sure I'll use logic. When that inevitably fails, I'm quoting you.

As for why it started, it was a combination of factors, really. Mostly it was to "cure" masturbation. All the attendant physical pain was wonderful to late 18th century Americans. It also "cured" epilepsy and paralysis and a whole other range of diseases. It still does, don't you know?

Clearly, our scientific wisdom has a giant blind spot that we're nursing as long as we can.

Eliot Bridge said...

...a certain ethnic group...

Are you trying to lure Hutton's friends over here?

Desargues, are you saying Americans say "too clever by half"? They don't say it when I'm listening. Which is for the best, because then I'd have to shoot them. And what's with the Latin? English was good enough for Jesus. There's no need to get fancy. "Too clever by half", indeed.

Gorilla Bananas said...

I blame dentists for the toe-sucking fad that many humans have taken up.

Desargues said...

Tony now confirms my suspicion. The War on the Foreskin is just another battle in the war on skin, one of whose hapless victims was Janet Jackson (I guess she should have died in the War on Awful Music instead).

Sorry for the Latin quote, Eliot. Thing is, I couldn't remember the English phrase; I only have a copy of the Vulgate with me--the rest of my fine collection of Bibles is kept hostage by my ex-wife (not that she reads them or something). It's the best I could do. But I'm sure that the fine readership of this blog won't be stopped by that.

Speaking of the fluent English Jesus must have spoken, I'm reminded of a really nice book by Umberto Eco, 'The Quest for the Perfect Language in European Culture.' He says around the early 17th century, with the emergence of the first nation states, linguistic nationalism was on the rise, so scholars in the West were frantically arguing that their own respective idioms were the true inheritors of the original language of all humanity. Few things more amusing than seeing a Dutch linguist argue that Jesus must have spoken Flemish, since it's so obviously perfect.

Soon enough, they came to realise their mistake--except for the Germans, again, who thought Indo-European languages ought to be properly called 'Indogermanisch', on account of the semantic purity of their Teutonic tongue. But we all know about the Germans...

R. Sherman said...

Ivan, thanks for the good thoughts. Re: Foreskins. Consider the geopolitical ramifications of the American custom. Why do you think we support the nation of Israel?

(While I was traveling there 20+ years ago, I witnessed a ritual circumcision. It took place in a restaurant. One of the 13 male witnesses was an IDF soldier who turned green and had to exit stage right during the process.)


Ivan the Terrible said...

Hi Des: That's the poor in spirit, not the poor in brains. The latter just daytime television. And don't get us started on the Germans again, dammit!

Welcome Tony! Yes, quote me with my blessing - all in a good cause, eh? Masturbation and epilepsy are new ones on me. Do let me know if you've noticed any less jacking off in the States...

Hi Eliot: not Hutton's friends particularly - just thought I'd try luring in general, just to make a change from all that cajoling. But circumcision is such a utterly dumb idea that I can't imagine why anyone would promote it so relentlessly unless they were making money off of it. Just be glad that there aren't a high percentage of Amazonian Indians in the medical profession, or we'd all have bloody soup-plates in our lips.

I'm not sure we can pin toe-sucking on dentists, GB. Surely our first port of call must be whatever simultaneously damaged these people's brains and taste buds. My money's on pot noodles.

And finally, Randall, you're welcome - get well soon. And if I'm ever in an Israeli restaurant, remind me to give the bombay mix a miss.

Foot Eater said...

I don't know if it's really all that bad. I asked a Jewish friend how he felt about it and he said it was no skin off his nose.

Sal said...

errr, yeah. interesting to see your experience of american dentists is my experience of english dentists.

i bailed from a 200 year old dentist in oz who told me i just MUST have all my wisdom teeth out, as soon as the first one started hurting.

the next was an australian-trained dentist (not traditional-trained), who said: well, leave them till they come out. all your teeth move around a lot, even day to day. 99% chance your teeth will move along so your wisdom teeth fit, and then you've got 4 spare teeth if you lose any later.

and you know?

he was bang on.

Ivan the Terrible said...

Foot Eater - that was terrible. Pick a window, you're leaving.

Sal - good for you, and long may they last. Just don't ever let an American dentist get you drunk. They're only after one thing...