Pithy humor


Just a few days ago I wrote about breaking a tooth, and my impending visit to the dentist (Potato chips cause baldness). I thought it would be funny to send the article to my doctor to give her a chuckle. As it turned out, it did more than that. She laughed out loud.

Except, due to unfortunate timing, the dental assistant decided that the perfect time to read the article to the doctor was at the precise time she had a sharp instrument jammed deep in my mouth. The dentist’s laughter caused her hand to shake, thus stabbing the sharp tool into my un-numb gums.

Luckily, I am not that funny. If I were drop-on-the-floor hilarious, it might have killed me. But my humor is more pithy, and it saved my life.

Speaking of pithy, I noticed that my hands involuntarily extended when the dentist had her tools in my mouth.


The only other time I saw that phenomenon was when my junior high school teacher pithed a frog in front of the entire biology class. Pithing involves jamming a small tool into a frog’s head, then swirling it around to scramble its brain. It was horrifying to watch.

Upon reflection, that was pretty much exactly what was happening to me.


I also got an email from Rich, and old friend who shared a military dental experience. It was too funny not to share:

“While I was stationed with Mobile Teams Rota, Spain, I had the misfortune to go to the dentist there on the base. The dentist did his exam and informed me that I needed to make follow up appointments to get six fillings. I was unable to make those follow up appointment and a few months later I transferred to Norfolk I again made an appointment to see the dentist. The dentist made his exam and informed that I had four cavities but two were very minor that he would not mess with at this time, but I needed to make an appointment to get the other two filled. Again I never got around to getting into get the fillings before I retired from the Navy. My happened to be a dental assistant and I made an appointment to see the dentist that see worked for. He did his exam and informed me that I needed a good cleaning and had no cavities.

“So over the course of about two years I went from six cavities to four cavities, to no cavities without a single filling.

“So I understand why it is called a practice, and we are the practice dummies.”

Thanks, Rich!


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