Hello, It’s been awhile since I’ve been to the dentist. On my phone, I keep getting a message that it is time for my next appointment. I will get to it. But I have to finish haying first.
And I also keep getting a message that it is time for my eye appointment. Again, haying comes first. But I promise, when the last of the hay is baled, I will honor these calls. I have a good dentist. He has TV’s in the ceiling so when you tip your chair back, you can watch the news, sports, or cartoons that you like. That is cool. Not that there is much on TV that is worth watching. And he makes sure that the stuff they give you to keep you fromscreaming and scaring the other patients is working before he begins to drill holes in your teeth. Much unlike a dentist I used years ago. That guy was a legend in Killdeer. He was old when he worked on me. And I guess that was 40 or 50 years ago. I had to have a tooth pulled. A big tooth. A tooth with roots that went down towards my knees. He gave me that shot with a 16 gauge, 4-inch needle. A dull needle. It didn’t take. The pain from the needle made me forget the pain in the tooth. The tooth was tough. Before long the dentist was on top of me, knees on my chest, pulling that tooth out a chunk at a time. I was tougher then than I am now. He did manage to get it out. I don’t know how he did it. I passed out sometime during the operation. Thank goodness. I heard a story the other day about a trip to the dentist. This game and fish employee, I think maybe a warden, was assigned to be in the Rugby area during goose season. He had a tooth go bad during the night. A throbbing, screaming, sweat dripping off your forehead kind of toothache. And he was hundredsof miles from his normal dentist. A friend of his contacted a local dentist and made arrangements for him to go in early the next morning and have this tooth taken care of. Now this game warden was a healthy devil. I mean he was portly. And he was dressed in his work clothes. You know if you are going after bad guys with guns, you better carry a gun too. So he had his 45 strapped on his side. The receptionist showed him to the chair and left him. As he eased into the dentist chair, he realized that he barely could squeeze in. And his weapon was in the way. So he crawled back out of the chair, unstrapped his
holster, and placed his weapon on the tray next to the torture tools of the dentist. You can imagine the thoughts that went through the dentist’s mind when he entered the room, saw this big old boy in the chair, and a 45 lying within easy reach. The dentist stopped, took a deep breath, and said, “I’ll be a gentle as I can. I certainly hope you won’t be needing that!”
Dean Meyer is a former state legislator and currently ranches in southwest North Dakota. He has been a featured columnist around the state for many years.
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