Saturday, June 6, 2009


#157, Upper East Side, NYC

Many years ago I lived in this neighborhood, now I only go there to part with loads of cash, be stuck with needles and find myself roaming the streets in a daze shortly thereafter, foaming at the mouth. No, this isn't the Lower East Side, it's the Upper East Side, and if you think that my subjecting myself to this altered state is in any way recreational, then clearly you haven't been to see my dentist.

My most recent trip to this curious neck of the woods was several weeks ago. If you've been following my grid, you'll see that I had a few numbers to get under my belt. So rather than focus on my very deep-seated dentist phobia, I intended to turn my journey to the Upper East Side a number-hunting expedition that would be so successful it would overshadow the dental agony that was the true purpose of my journey. I was not so easily hoodwinked.

The pain of the visit was alleviated somewhat by glancing from time to time at the Us Weekly with Robert Pattinson's highly distracting hair on the cover whilst I lay in the dentist's chair at a compromising angle, my mouth being poked and prodded with needles, drills, and an instrument of torture called, somewhat ominously, "the explorer." Of course, there was the added prospect of getting some good numbers to go along with my grinding headache, and on that count, I wasn't disappointed. The design of the door even has this cool molecular model feel to it, proving once more that science and art can connect. Just don't expect it not to hurt.


Pierre said...

I worked for a dental equipment manufacturer and was required to watch "If Saliva Were Red", a training video on cross contamination. They took a mannequin, filled it's mouth with red dye and did what dentists do.
At the end of the procedure there was red dye everywhere. The gloves and masks they wear obviously aren't for our protection. Just thought I'd add to your pre-dental visit angst.

Jackie said...

1. Do dentists really have an instrument called "The Explorer?" I'd be very wary to see my dentist pick up such an instrument.

2. I didn't know you ever lived on the UES. Learn something new every day and all that.

Therese Cox said...

Pierre, that is unspeakably gruesome. But I will gladly sacrifice my own squeamishness for the sake of your story. That's just too good not to share.

Jackie, yes, there is. I listen intently to everything they say when I'm in the chair. It sounds like something totally sinister is going on. (Which, of course, there is.) And yeah, I totally rocked Yorkville once. Though my dentist, strictly speaking, is more mid-town. But to me, that stuff's all the UES. And fraught with pain.

Julie said...

I need a map: Upper East Side, Lower ES, Evil, Wvil, brooklyn ... yikes!