So the last two root canals were done today. They were both "do-over"s. Things that occurred to me while in the chair: this time I bet the zylocain doesn't work; did he just say "oops"?; he has the strangest pictures on the wall; I paid a lot of money for this guy to stick needles in my gums; there's that smell of singed enamel dust again; I think the dental assistant has a crush on me; does this numbing stuff ever go so far that it effects the brain?; I hope no one dinged my car door in the parking lot; he has been distracted too much and I think the zylocain is wearing off.
I've had three different rooms to observe those pictures, each one different. One of them has grotesquely elongated human and animal figures. One has an exposed woman's breast shone from the window of a non-descript mechanical contraption. In one pic there is a robotic looking figure that remotely resembles a woman's figure. Only the face is feminine. Another is a Dali-esque pocket watch, bending as it slips over a precipice. In my meditations I think I have discovered a common theme and the reason they are on display in the dentist's workplace: They are all painful approximations of reality. They might have been real figures, distorted by delirium. They are ugly distortions, and I, for one, find them painful.
Now that I have finished with the root canals, I can look for the appointments back at my regular dentist for the crown to cap these vulnerable teeth. One of them was what the dentist called a "perforation". Instead of the earlier canal going all the way down, as it should, it went through the side of the root. He refilled it that far and explained to me that we just hope for the best. Obviously he was reaching for a disclaimer in case I have a problem with it. I told him that at my age it will probably last as long as I need it.
I was able to eat a hamburger for lunch, so I am a happy man.