Tools of the Trade

I’m going to throw out some phrases that are commonly used in certain businesses. See if you can guess what kind of business.

  • Where’s the 3/16” drill bit?
  • Hand me that socket wrench.
  • Better torque down that cap some more.

What did you guess?

 

I was recently an earwitness to these phrases as some specialized craftsmen worked on me in their professional place of business.

Notice that I said, “worked on me.” Not my car or lawn mower, or any other piece of machinery. You see, I was sitting back in a dentist’s chair. (To be technical, they weren’t dentists, but oral surgeons — otherwise known as “glorified dentists.”)

The procedure I was undergoing was the installation of a dental implant, and it’s not just for the senior set. These days, they are the preferred alternative to a denture (or “false teeth,” as our parents called them).

In the old days, one kept one’s false teeth in a glass of water by the bed. Nothing did more to kill the libidos of that generation.

 

This was my second implant. The first time, I’d had anesthesia. Then, I knew from nothing until I woke up with a bolt in my gum, ready for a crown from the dental dentist.

I would’ve opted for anesthesia again, but for two things:

I found out that my wife and my sister, who’d had implants from different oral surgeons, weren’t knocked out. Not willing to live with that shame, I declined anesthesia this time. After all, I like to think of myself as a manly man.

The second reason was cost: what insurance would and wouldn’t cover. So sure, I’ll endure some bone drilling and ratchet wrenches in my mouth to save enough money for a weekend getaway somewhere.

Now I’m Googling how much money I can save by going to a car mechanic instead of a dentist for any future dental issues. Do you know what the hourly rates are for each profession?

 

I still have a few months to wait for my dental crown. I’m hopeful that by then, my sex appeal – such as it is — will still be intact, without having to keep my teeth in a glass by the bed.

 

The End

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The hero uses his encyclopedic knowledge of Classic Trek as freelance intelligence operative.

Ghosts of Forgotten Empires Vol l

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