Monday, September 08, 2008


Having gum surgery is the worst, most painful experience a human being can possibly endure. I don’t want to hear anyone complain about childbirth ever again, or passing a kidney stone, or getting shot five times in the gut and having iodine poured down the bullet holes.

I know this because a couple years ago I had gum surgery, and it’s the worst ever. It only took an hour, but that hour – and John McCain can vouch for this - was worse than being stuck in a Vietnamese POW camp for five years. I wish I had a time machine, just so I could go back to the Spanish Inquisition and tell tortured heretics stories of what I went through so they could stop feeling so bad for themselves and recognize that what they’re enduring is nowhere near the pain I went through. Then I’d go do the same to the victims of the Salem Witch Trials, the sinking of the Titanic and Buffalo Bills fans in the 1990s. I’d get them all to hold candlelight vigils for me out of homage for the senseless suffering I’ve endured.

Before I posted this story I printed it out and sent it to Muhammad Ali, and he says Parkinson’s Disease has got nothing on my discomfort. Then I e-mailed it to the guy that got shot by Dick Cheney and he felt so bad for me he said he didn’t follow proper hunting protocol and offered to take the blame. Britney Spears stopped by the other day to borrow a cup of sugar and after I told her what I’d been through, she said gum surgery seems like it sucked worse than being married to Kevin Federline. On Wikipedia it says that the Archduke Franz Ferdinand’s last words were “Geez. Getting assassinated in a chain of events that will lead to the start of World War I really, really sucks, but it’s got nothing on gum surgery.” Look it up.

Here’s the way it went down. My mouth has more gum than a Bubblicious factory, so the oral surgeon has to get in there and solder off the excess. The worst part was not the needles in my mouth or listening to the guy saw the flesh off my teeth, it was the act of hyperextending my jaw for an hour. Remember how when after Hitler killed himself spy agencies searched out the world and found all the Nazis that went into hiding so they could try them at Nuremburg? Turns out they missed one, and he’s working at a Tucson dentist office. In an elaborate torture experiment, the Nazi doctor kept pushing my mouth farther and farther open. I felt like the dinosaur King Kong kills by pulling its jaw apart. My mouth was as sore as Ryan Seacrest’s was after he had to service all those producers on the casting couch at American Idol auditions.

You can't talk when your moth is forced open like that, either. That’s probably a good thing, too, because my threats of violent retribution would have landed me in jail. The whole time the surgery was going on, it was an inner struggle between my fear and the instinct to just get out of the chair and run the hell out of there. My mouth may have been numb, but what hurt were the muscles of my dislocated jaw. When I closed my mouth afterward I could hear a crack and my jaw completely shifted twice until it got back to where it was supposed to be, like an automatic transmission.

And I paid for this! Yet I still got a better return for my money than I have for Arizona Wildcats football tickets the past 10 years.

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