If You Thought It'd Be Fun to Get a Toothache and See a Dentist During a Pandemic, Guess What? It's Not!

Illustration for article titled If You Thought It'd Be Fun to Get a Toothache and See a Dentist During a Pandemic, Guess What? It's Not!
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I know, I know, I know. Staying socially distant during COVID is quite the drag, and you thought it would be new and exciting and fun to have one of the wisdom teeth you actually planned to extract in April—but couldn’t because COVID—get infected. You already walked all the steps, streamed all the shows, and baked all the bread, and now you wanted to try your hand at this.


You know what would be rad?” you thought to yourself, “What if the one tooth that’s so far back in my mouth that I can’t floss it properly got some food caught in it, and the food pinched a nerve that makes my mouth feel like I drank a Molotov cocktail?

You know what would be even cooler?” you continued, “What if each time my tooth throbbed, everything from my forehead to my nutsack felt like they were being stabbed by bored squirrels with sharp shanks, because somehow that tooth nerve is connected to the nuts nerve, which makes no sense whatsoever—it’s like wifi connected to water pressure—but should be a fucking blast?” 

And then,” you wondered, excitedly, “What if, while in a deadly pandemic where the most efficient way to get sick is by inhaling infected air, I went to the one place where you can’t wear a mask? I want to replicate all the anxiety of a trust fall, but make it so that if I fall, I might actually die—or just kill someone I love!

Anyway, I’m here today to tell you that none of this—not even the penicillin that makes your pee smell like cat shit—is fun. So if you were considering doing this, try something that would be more exciting, like watching The Passion of the Christ or jamming your face ear first into a file cabinet.

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB, a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times, and the author of What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Blacker (Ecco/HarperCollins)



I had my first root canal done by a lady I'm pretty sure went to Dr. Mengele's School of Dental Surgery. She had a German accent and everything. It took 12 shots to numb me, including one into the bone, and I was still six inches off the chair the whole time. If aliens or terrorists ever get me, all they gotta threaten me with is teeth stuff and it's all over.