Monday, March 28, 2011

Another missing tooth

Almost 4 years ago I lost one of my front crowns (I have 4). For 3½ months I went about looking like a country hick, occasionally adopting the pirate look for variation.

My dentist at the time seemed amazed any of my crowns had lasted as long as they had, considering they had been attached to filed-down teeth rather than a metal rod. Squeezing me into a series of last minute cancellation appointments, in order to avoid having to wait 9 months for treatment, I was given a root canal and eventually had a new crown put in place by late summer.

What was clear, though, was it would only be a matter of time before the other 3 would go the same way.

Last week, while innocently eating a bowl of muesli for breakfast, I had that gut-churning realisation that another of my crowns had snapped off.

A couple of days later I managed to get an emergency appointment at the dentist where it has been confirmed I will need root canal treatment and a new crown.

I was fitted with a temporary plastic make-do thing until my next appointment – could be July, but I have put my name down as being ready to drop everything at an hour’s notice if someone cancels before then.

The temporary plastic make-do thing fell out with this morning’s bowl of muesli.

Perhaps I should start eating porridge for breakfast.

However, it set me thinking about how much difference a small change can make to our appearance.

Let us establish a base line image – here is a 44 year old man with wrinkles bedding in nicely while grey hairs are establishing themselves ever more abundantly through his hair and beard.




Studies have shown that when looking at photos of people with glasses, we naturally assume them to be a bit more intelligent – it’s a form of “halo effect” – which is where a particular attribute means we look more favourably upon someone.



Drop those glasses to the end of the nose and we add wisdom to the list of expected characteristics



However, a missing tooth seems to have completely the opposite effect. We instantly knock off about 30 IQ points, and start to assume his mother is also his sister and his regular lover supplies all the family’s wool needs.



So I thought I’d see what would happen if I combined the look of my reading glasses on the end of my nose, while revealing my missing tooth. Would they balance each other out?



Actually I think all it’s done is make me look about 30 years older.

Sigh…

26 comments:

mapstew said...

Oh man, you're making me chuckle loudly, and it's too late at night to be making me chuckle loudly!

(When we eventually get to meet face to face I'll tell you my teeth story!)

You have a great sense of humour my friend! :¬)

hope said...

Oh, I so feel your pain on this one! And the curse of it all is, every time I had a tooth break (from bad fillings falling out while eating) I was always eating something SOFT!

I think you look intelligent no matter what. ;)

Amanda said...

This is great! I love the comparisons! Hubby has a broken tooth (and glasses, coincidentally), and has been self-conscious while waiting to have it repaired. He has always looked rather intelligent, but it is funny how such a seemingly small thing can so radically change our perceptions of someone! I would venture to guess that if you were wearing a stained tank top with holes in it, it would just look like you had stolen someone elses glasses. ;)

Vicky said...

Its the healthy breakfasts that do it LOL

Aayushi said...

haha..LOL!!!!!!
what a combo!!

Jayne Martin said...

Crown work. Ouch!

I'll take the guy with the glasses on and all his teeth, please.

debra said...

I am joining Map in the laughter. My husband wanted to know just what was so funny. So I showed him the pictures, and now he is laughing, too.

Whitney Lee said...

Too funny. My husband lost one of his crowns eating pizza on a holiday weekend. It was his upper canine, and he had a band gig that weekend. I can assure you that the experience gave me a new perspective on people missing a tooth...

GingerGirl said...

I actually have nightmares about losing teeth, and for some reason they terrify me. Maybe I am unbelievably vain. Sigh. I was hoping that teeth symbolized something so it would seem more profound...

Katie Roberts said...

thanks Kim, I needed a laugh!!! xx
(word verification: 'uptickie'!)

:)

Theanne and Baron said...

LOL...it's 3:00am here and I'm a bit punchy anyway but that's hysterical!

Falak said...

LOL! This is the 'effect' you were talking about :) Yes, I whole heartedly agree with you that the whole 'taking your glasses and putting them on the end of your nose' creates an effect of profound wisdom. But an effect is all that it creates. That policeman proved this theory :( So sorry about your tooth!

Eryl said...

Soup for every meal until you get them all replaced, I'd say.

David Mark Williams - Poet said...

OK. Until you get your replacement tooth, what I would suggest you do is refrain from smiling. Simple but effective. What's more it will add gravitas to that wise man image.

~:C:~ said...

Kim, I am in tears. I kid you not. Your post made me laugh so hard that my tear ducts leaked. Nice one, old timer. :p

Lynne said...

ya...well...hmmmm...don't know what to say as I sit in a bit of pain missing a tooth that the dentist took out from the root. LOL

Kim Ayres said...

Mapstew - There are very few people over the age of 40 who don't have some kind of teeth story. I look forward to hearing yours :)

Hope - it's true about the soft thing - I wasn't aware of crunching on a hard nut, instead it seemed to come out embedded in a raisen.

Amanda - that made me laugh loudly - I will ditch the holey stained tank top immediately :)

Vicky - it's true - who ever lost a crown while eating chocolate trifle for breakfast?

Aayushi - :)

Jayne - and what do you plan on doing with his glasses and teeth?

Debra - glad to be able to spread the smiles (even gap-toothed ones)

Whitney Lee - even worse when you have to perform in public - he has my sympathies

GingerGirl - I've had loads of dreams about all my teeth falling out. Years ago I read a dream-interpretation book that said it was to do with sexual frustration. However, the fact I usually get these dreams when either I have a looming dental appointment, or am worrying about my teeth means I tend to dream much more literally than symbolically :)

Katie - glad to oblige :)

Theanne & Baron - :)

Falak - Everything we see is an illusion of one kind or another - we don't see anything as it is, only as we interpret it. Our interpretations are then shaped by our experiences and our cultures. Some people - police, marketing people, politicians and anyone trying to sell us something (be that a thing or a viewpoint) understand this, so manipulate our interpretations in their favour. So that policeman in your blog post would have known exactly what he was doing to try and generate a sense of trust and responsibility.

Eryl - I'd be shick of shoup before long...

DMW - unfortunately, so far I only remember to do that once it's too late and people have started recoiling...

~:C:~ - it's always good to make people laugh. Well, intentionally, anyway...

Lynne - you have my sympathies. I'm very fortunate that for some reason I'm not in any pain just now.

Ron said...

Kim,

You are priceless! With that missing tooth you would fit right in as a Sussex County native at the local Laurel Flea Market! I can't tell you how many hunky guys I've seen down there and then they give me the 'smile' which is usually minus a couple front teeth! I must be a pervert because somewhere deep inside me, I'm turned on. Don't get nervous now. :)

Hindsfeet said...

fun food for thought, Kim....always a delight these little visits : )

And you're still hansome as all get out, not to worry : )

Pat said...

Hi Old Timer!
Now just lay off the muesli and stick with the porridge.
Hope your youth and beauty is quickly restored or I shall feel like Methuselah.

Mary Witzl said...

Kim, this post has given me my first belly laugh of the day. And let me point out that it is now almost midnight, so that's all the more of a feat! Thank you! (And thank you for the photo file too -- this one will not be lost!)

Kim Ayres said...

Liz - so you have a fetish for the country hick look?

Pat - Porridge and soup for ever more...

Mary - just don't delete the email with the photo attachment. If you ever lose it on the computer again, you can just download it again from your gmail account

Mimi and Tilly said...

You just made me laugh out loud! My Significant Other took me with him for his first eye test, last week. He was told he needed "readers" and was nearly ready to top himself. "That's it, I'm officially old, Em." He's 46.

Carole said...

I cracked up when I saw these pictures. So much so that the rest of my company had to come over and look at it. They enjoyed your brilliant look and chuckled at your toothless look.

Kim Ayres said...

Emma - just wait until he realises he can give people withering looks over the top of his glasses - that new sense of power and control will be intoxicating :)

Carole - I think this post seems to have topped the list for giving belly laughs :)

Áine Tierney said...

Hilarious!