With less than a week before I go to LA for a month of Idol rehearsals, I have to prioritize what I can get done before leaving. When I'm feeling dramatic I think, "On Sunday my life as I know it will be over until September." Funny how watching a Christian Slater movie marathon is creeping steadily up the ranks of my to-do list: The Legend of Billie Jean, Gleaming the Cube, Pump up the Volume, Heathers. Also: get my hair cut, have tea with Robin and Kelly, take the dog on many walks. And work, work, work so I'm prepared on Monday.
I finished a few grown up tasks like getting health insurance and reading a book on tax deductions. Sorry, skimming a book on tax deductions. It got less painful as I went and I started realizing that taxes are just a big game - not a cool or fun one, but a game nonetheless - and I just need to learn a few rules. Still, it wasn't bedtime reading. I sat in the library and sped read the important parts and took notes. Useful but a chore.
I also bought Groupons for Matthew and I to go to a dentist since we don't have dental insurance.
Our appointments were on Friday and I was, as usual, unconcerned. I have a history of being the MVP at the dentist, good teeth being one of my things. A lot of things don't come easily to me but strong teeth do so I tend to strut out of the dentist lobby with a new brush and travel-sized toothpaste, thinking I don't even need these friendly reminders. MY TEETH CLEAN THEMSELVES. My front two turn in but that's maybe not surprising since I haven't had braces since 1984. My childhood dentist Dr. Mills was so proud of the work he did on my teeth that year that he took white plaster before and after molds and displayed them in the glass case on the wall by the receptionist with the other overachievers. I associate the dentist with praise and new toys.
This might explain my reaction when my new dentist told me I had a cavity, my first cavity. I was a hundred percent ready to call bullshit on Dr. Javaheri but he got all high tech, took a photo of my cavity and displayed it on the giant flat screen television in the room so I could see it for myself. This was the opposite of Dr. Mills' glass case of pride. I was faced with the full-color high-definition image of the inside of my mouth, slick with saliva and in that one spot three teeth from the back on the left side it looked like a small rotting sponge. There would be no argument.
As soon as I made my filling appointment for Monday, I hightailed it out to the sidewalk and when Matthew exited with a Colgate bag and free toothpaste, I was accusatory.
"I didn't get one of those!"
"Yes, you did," he said, "You just ran out too quickly. The woman at the desk thinks you're upset and asked me if you're okay."
"Oh," I said. "What'd you tell her?"
"I covered for you and said that you're just stressed because you're leaving town in a few days."
Yesterday I went back for the filling. I didn't like the smell of my tooth burning, though it was preferable to the Lasik smell of one's eye burning, but it was painless overall. I wanted the receptionist to see how not-upset I was so I flashed her a big smile as I was paying. It felt weird; I touched the left side of my face. Oh right, completely numb. What did that smile look like? When I got to the car, I flashed the same smile in the rearview mirror and then started laughing out of the side that wasn't frozen. So creepy.