Thursday, January 12, 2006

Distract When Needed

Now that the holidays are officially over, I have gotten myself back to the archive (twice!), read a rather lengthy but useful dissertation on Max Ernst, borrowed and read most of a book on dissertation-writing, printed out my stuff for the first time, moved around some text, written some more text… doesn’t that sound just splendid?
Well, in actual fact, while that’s all very well, my gumline around the temporary crown has been bothering me for somewhat over 24 hours now. People don’t understand how I can have dental work without novocaine, but believe me, it is nothing compared to nagging discomfort. When the dentist presses down on the gum with some sort of metal or other instrument in order to do the filling or prepare for the crown impression, this is unquestionably uncomfortable, but it is tolerable—I know that the pain is perfectly reasonable, not extreme, and will mostly go away the instant the dentist stops pressing. It’s kind of like when you peel an orange and the peel goes too far under the thumbnail: you don’t like it, but there is nothing bizarre or mysterious about it.
When your mouth starts to bug you in midafternoon for no good reason, however, that’s different. You ask yourself “Was that chili too spicy?” or “Is dark chocolate bad for the gums?” You wonder “Hey, is there something stuck under that temporary crown, and should I try to find out or will that pop off what ought to stay in place?” When dousing the area in the recommended disinfectant doesn’t do much good, and ibuprofen doesn’t permanently clear things up, you start to wonder “Will I develop an abscess over the weekend? What if I have to have jaw surgery instead of getting a permanent crown on Tuesday?”
I never claimed I was either brave or immune to absurd speculation. Furthermore, I do not like going outdoors in the snow and damp when I feel like this (although I did spend most of the afternoon at the archive happily reading about how Karel Janský sued Bohuslav Brouk in 1936 over a little matter relating to the poet Mácha).
Having returned home with some medicinal Becherovka (Becherovka is always medicinal, I feel certain), I present my readers with a highly entertaining blog called Threadbared, which I learned about on Susie Bright’s somewhat more educational but also entertaining blog. I hope most of my readers already know who Susie Bright is, as I’m sure her fame extends well beyond the greater Bay Area. (I only recently learned she had a blog.) Threadbared is not quite so celebrated yet. Its authors have a remarkable collection of old sewing pattern illustrations and related items, which they approach with unique comedy. If you thought Bisexual Barbie was funny, you’ll like Threadbared.

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