Will I lose my front tooth? Will I lose my front tooth to a corn chip? Will I lose my front tooth to a corn chip and swallow it accidentally? Will I ever comfortably eat beef or an apple again? Will I lose my tooth while in California or Florence or even Worcester and be instantly transformed into an Irish hag of fairy tale horror? Will I lose my front tooth tomorrow morning when I take out my mouth guard and there’s that tiny bit of suction? Will I worry so much and eat so little that I lose weight? Could I eat so little and get so attached to losing weight that I get all weird about food? And if I count cooking and food as two of the remaining pleasures in life, how would I fare without them? Maybe I’d bungi jump or go axe throwing on Friday nights or learn to play a vicious hand of bridge or throw out almost every thing I own.
* Can you tell I went to the dentist yesterday? “Ready yourself,” she said after gluing my post and crown back into my mouth, “for an implant. The crown could come loose in a year and a half. Or tomorrow.”
There are many stories to tell about my front tooth, beginning with the time (I was six? Eight?) when I walked into an automatically opening grocery store exit thinking it was the entrance and continuing to when I was maybe fourteen with a poorly executed inward gainer off a very springy diving board. What’s that? Sixty years. It’s been sixty years since I’ve had a live, healthy tooth there. I guess I’m lucky it hasn’t been problematic before now is another way to think about this.
PS I was weeding right before taking these pictures in case you’re wondering about the dirty fingernails.