Thursday, December 9, 2010

The One With My Orthodontist

Those of you who follow me on Twitter probably saw last night a minor questioning of self when I ran into my childhood orthodontist at the library checkout line.

I'm sitting there, minding my own business, probably reading blogs or checking my e-mail or something, and a woman walks up and hands me a book and her card. I scanned her card, not looking at the name (because I rarely do, except in cases where the name catches my attention, such as the family with the last name Buttz or someone with a crazy first name like Kjamashonda, pronounced "Jane").

The book she was checking out was "Eats Shoots & Leaves" by Lynne Truss. It's a book about punctuation and the proper use of it.

(If you haven't heard it, the title comes from this joke where a panda walks into a bar, sits down, has a couple beers, and then orders dinner. His dinner comes, he eats it, and it's a fairly routine visit. Then he stands up, takes out a pistol, and fires three shots into the air. The manager comes running out and says, "What the hell are you doing?" The panda looks at him and says, "I'm a panda. Look it up." The manager goes to the computer in the back and looks up "panda." The entry says, "Panda - a black and white bearlike mammal found mostly in China. Eats shoots and leaves.")
So ANYWAY, I told the lady that it's a really good book, and one I own. She kind of looks at me and says, "Are you Sarah?"

Since I wear my nametag hanging out of my pants pocket, she wouldn't have been able to see it, so she must have actually known me. I said, "Yes?" (as if I weren't certain) and she says, "Do you recognize me?"

(Sidenote: I HATE when people ask me that! Clearly, I do not recognize you, because if I DID, then I would say something like, "HEY! Person I recognize! I haven't seen you forever!")

I tell her I do not, and then she tells me, "Your orthodontist?" and I'm all, "OMG! Hi!"

I'm wondering how often, as an orthodontist, when you run into former patients, they smile really widely to show you that their teeth still look as good as they did last time they saw you.

I may have done that.

She then asked me how my parents are. Not feeling the need to go into the fact that they've gotten divorced since last time I was there, I just said they were fine. (They are.) Then she asked about my sister, who was also a patient of hers (Thinking back on it, she probably KNEW my parents had gotten divorced, since my sister was a patient there, too, and it would have been after that.) I told her she was fine, in college, etc.

And she was all, "You majored in English, right? Remind me where you went to school." I did, but was all, "WTF?" that she knew about the English thing. (Again, probably because my sister was a patient when I was in school, I think.)

Anyway, it was CRAZY that she remembered me, considering I was a patient of hers for approximately a year. I had the braces for 10 months, and then I had a retainer that probably got checked a time or two. But approximately a year.

THEN I started worrying. 12 was my most awkward and hideous year. I was Not Cute when I was 12. I went to her when I was 12. WHY DID SHE RECOGNIZE ME?

(Side note: I put "awkward teenager" into Google Images to find a good illustration here, and about 80% of the pictures that popped up were Michael Cera. Michael, FIND A NEW CHARACTER TO PLAY!)

That's actually the end of the story. There's not real big wrap-up or conclusion. Just me, thinking I grew into my giant ears and awkwardly big teeth only to be immediately recognized by the orthodontist that saw me at my most unfortunate-looking.

I'll end with a question: I have two packages to send out to people I've never met in real life, but who I have met online, and they are going to involve baked yummies. What I wanted to do was have a "giveaway" here (because, you know, I've ALWAYS wanted to do that, but I don't have people giving me things to give away), giving away a third package. But then I wondered, would people want things that someone they'd never met had made?

Granted, if you eat at restaurants and whatever, you don't know who's making your food. But I think you know what I mean.

My question is this: If I offered that kind of thing, would anyone enter? Or would I just have people I know entering, leaving me feeling sad and destitute? I'll tell you, I'm a very clean baker, and I don't lick the utensils (at least I don't when I'm making things for other people. If it's just me and D? I'm ALL OVER IT!)

Let me know, so I can get this show on the road.

Or, if I just get people I know telling me they'd enter, then I'll just make it for someone I know. Either way.


  1. Very funny. I love Eats Shoots and Leaves. But I think the joke ends with the dictionary entry saying, "Eats, shoots and leaves." The joke is that the comma shouldn't be there, so it changes the meaning.

    Anyway, you have a fun blog.

    I would eat something from a stranger baker, but in order to do that, I would have to reveal my true identity. I will settle for virtual baked goods.

  2. I always thought the joke was that, when you say it out loud, you can't hear the commas, so you really just don't know.

    Also, thank you!

    I'm glad someone finally answered my question! I was beginning to feel ignored. And so you don't have to reveal your identity (Clark Kent??), I will send you VIRTUAL cookies and Santa-themed Chex Mix.

    It will not make you gain weight.

  3. Ohhh, that book sounds interesting. I've always been a grammar, spelling, and punctuation Nazi.

    I agree about Michael Cera! Every time we watch a movie with him, he plays this awkward teenager, and it's starting to get old. We always have the discussion about how he probably won't be able to move along in his career, because now he's being stereotyped.

    I agree with snarkbutt (which is a very interesting name). I would eat something that someone had made me, even if I hadn't met them in person, but I would have to know them really well. And there's also that whole "giving away my identity" thing. But, if others will go along with it, I think it's a wonderful idea!

  4. My ortho. Moved in next to my parents new house, he has a cool pond with a bunch of coy in it. He let my kids go and feed them when we would visit.

    I would eat just about any baked goods from just about anywhere. Although, I have never entered a contest.

  5. Of course the ortho remembers you. Your treatment probably paid for the down payment on her house.

    I would eat baked goods from a stranger. A gal on Twitter once sent me shortbread. And I don't even mind if you lick the spoon. My cats usually do.