Tag Archives: teeth

My Big, Dumb Teeth

17 Oct

For quite a long time, I’ve been hoping to someday save enough money to fix what is to me a monstrous overbite.  Of course, things always seem incredibly exaggerated when you’re the one attached to the body parts you’re criticizing.  But nonetheless, it’s  my reality. I took the time this weekend to look up what such a procedure would be like should I choose to finally embark on the journey.

It’s awful.  Truly awful.  Turns out it could rock my world to the tune of $50,000 and may or  may not lead to a few months with my jaw clamped shut.  Not to mention a decent sized percentage of lip and chin numbness for the rest of my life.  All things considered, it appears as if my perfect teeth-wielding dreams will have to be put to rest.  And in honor of the fact that I must do so, I’ve decided to repost a tale of those teeth, written by a much younger, much more blog-neglecting, equally tooth-0bsessed Jackie.  Enjoy. 

I’ve had several less-than-glamorous moments that compose the fuzzy collage of what is my childhood. From leopard pants paired with bright blue tops, fuschia skirts and lime green blouses, to even day-glo, all-green Reeboks, I didn’t have a care in the world for what it thought of me and was more than happy to show off my fashionable fashion taste I could display as I debuted the new seasons of hand-me-downs and thrift store pizzazz. One could say I was the Vera Wang of the lower class.

The beauty of those times is encapsulated in how gorgeously apathetic and ignorant I was to the opinions that surrounded me. I gorged myself on books about Jim Carrey and aspired to be him. My face got stretchier, my clothes more exotic, and my life even more enjoyable. Yeah, I wore big glasses and had permed hair long enough to adequately lustrate my lower region, but I had spunk. And big teeth.

Lots of them, actually. Lots of big, freakin teeth.

One could say I hated them from the beginning. I scooted around the house as a toddler with teeth to the wind, running at full speed toward any solid object that dare enter my field of vision. By the time I was 6, they had to be removed. They were black, cracked apart, and dead to me. Success!

Until they grew back.

They grew back with a vengeance. All of them did. Angry at what I’d done to their brothers and sisters, they came back fiercer, bulkier, and more demanding than ever before. Jutting out from all sides of my jaw, I wondered how it was that I would avoid swallowing them. On the roof of my mouth, in every crevice, outside every natural jaw line, and even deep in the roots of my wisdom teeth, they multiplied. And at the front of the militia, two perfectly straight, perfectly large teeth shone for all the world to see, forcing their way past the others in a desperate cry for attention. … and that they got.

I became instantly famous for a gag called “The Bunny Face” in which I embraced my curse, scrunched up my nose, put my fingers behind my head, and chomped up and down as a small woodland creature might chew upon a small twig. Instant fame. The cheers and pleads for The Bunny Face lived from 3rd grade up until my freshman year of college, when I officially retired it and publicly announced that it would no longer be featured on the Jackie Baker Showtime Hour.

My mouth retaliated.

A trip to the dentist revealed more troops; at the back of my jaw, six wisdom teeth had begun to move in. That’s right: six. If indeed an average person has all their wisdom teeth come in, it often denotes four. I, however, am a special case. A small percentage of lucky, tooth-blessed folk get what are called “super incisors,” which grow in immediately behind the regular two on the upper jaw. Super Incisors. Sounds almost… bunny-like.

I underwent a ridiculous procedure in which eight teeth were removed. At the same time. Six wisdom teeth and two regular asshole teeth that wouldn’t behave, one of which was located right on the roof of my mouth. Really.

By my sophomore year of college, my mouth was looking good compared to its sordid, toothy past. My smile line was lookin’ swell, and I was on my way toward worry-free dentistry.

Cue senior year: audition feedback meetings. After a silent two years, my front teeth are back and bold. It is brought to my attention that my overbite is interfering with my ability to speak well. My front teeth are older, wiser. With no Bunny Face with which to bombard me, they have struck in a much more intellectual way: by stunting my ability to easily handle the speech mechanisms that compose the Shakespearean language. Blasted!

And so my battle begins again. I care more about what the world thinks these days than I did in my thrift store fashionista days. After two years of pride, I’ve been reduced to The Girl with the Overbite. I struggle, I pine, but alas, I can do little to help my moneyless estate.

Since the dental procedure required involves a great deal of money, I must settle for investing in one-holed ski masks. I will immediately cease talking and will invest in a variety of bold and bright colors and they shall mask my pain. … and my overbite. Leopard print, bright blue, fuschia, and lime green. I’ll wear them with every outfit, I’ll set new trends, I will overcome the setbacks of my toothy past and shoot for the stars. I shall return to my childhood splendor and set new standards of fashion amongst the criminal demographic.

I, Jackie Baker, will no longer be set back by my bulky, malicious front teeth. 

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