At least I was until Monday, when my new dentist -- Dr. Seidman -- informed me, after removing my old crown and gasping, that the tooth underneath was "severely necrotic and desiccated," two words you don't ever want associated with any of your body parts. Upon further examination, scraping and drilling, he informed me I would need a root canal.
I've never had a root canal, but everyone says it's like the worst possible experience. I don't quite get it, but apparently they shove wires down into the roots of your tooth and then screw some metal post in. And it takes several appointments to complete.
Obviously, Dr. Seidman couldn't finish the job on Monday, so he welded a temporary, plastic crown to my tooth -- I guess, so I wouldn't have to walk around exposing my severely necrotic desiccated tooth to the world. The hygienist, a far gentler lady than Arcadia, advised me to avoid crunchy or sticky foods, and to chew on the other side of my mouth until my next appointment this coming Thursday.
Which I've done -- scrupulously. (As I'm on a very low-carb diet, I don't eat much in the way of crunchy or sticky, anyway.) So my week was going well, aside from a few nightmares where people were ripping my teeth out with pliers. I sat down in front of "Seinfeld" tonight with a lovely dinner of leftover kielbasa and a bowl of tuna salad.
Then I decided to slice myself a piece of cheddar cheese. And I'm chewing it, and all the sudden I bite down on something hard... IN THE CHEESE! And I'm totally freaking out: What could be hard in cheese? Surely something awful that shouldn't be there! And I reach into my mouth and gently extract the hard item. And you guessed it -- it's my temporary plastic crown, covered in yellow cheddar.
And my severely necrotic desiccated tooth is exposed!
I ran to the bathroom and brushed and gargled, but now I don't know what to do. Does this qualify as a dental emergency? Can I make it another two days until my appointment, or do I need immediate care? And if I do go two days with this severely necrotic desiccated hole, what am I supposed to eat? And since when does cheese constitute a crunchy or sticky food?!
In other horrifying news, I did a set Saturday night at a club that shall remain nameless. It was a barker show, and I never do barkers, but I've done this room before, and it's a good room, and not one where the performers are required to bark; they just do it voluntarily to increase their audience size.
Being that it was Halloween weekend, I dressed up in my cop uniform -- the same pathetic costume I drag out every year at this time -- and stood on the side of the street telling passers by I'd arrest them if they didn't come to the show. Amazingly, I got a group of eight out-of-towners to go in.
It was just about 9, and the show was starting, so I left my sidewalk post and headed down to the performing space. With my group of eight, the small room was just about full. But the one waitress was nowhere in site. And my eight were getting restless; they wanted food and booze now.
Just as I was about to get up and take their order myself, the woman running the show leaned over to them and said, "Well, if you want, you can go to the bar upstairs and order drinks there."
I was like, "Are you out of your fucking mind?! You're sending them AWAY?!"
Sure enough, they left... and never came back. Now there was a gaping hole in the front of the room (much like my severely necrotic desiccated tooth), and it was a hole that was never filled.
So the opener gets up. And he's doing his best warming up the crowd, all of whom are concentrated in the back-most tables. But everyone keeps going, "What's that smell?!" I look up and see smoke wafting past the floodlights. About five minutes go by, and now it really smells like we're being chemically gassed. As the opener continues, a couple of the bar employees determine it's one of the hanging speakers that's on fire, and they quickly remove it.
Now the sound is totally distorted -- nobody can hear what the opener is saying. But I can make out the following: "Ladies and gentlemen... Adam Sank!"
I go up in my cop uniform, which includes a hat and sunglasses. A very poor choice of outfits, it turns out. I might as well have been doing material with a bag over my head, a la the Unknown Comic.
So just to recap: The crowd can't hear me, they can't see me, and they're sitting in the back of a smoke-filled, half-empty room. You can probably guess how my set went.
After limping off the stage, I wandered over to Rose's Turn, hoping to drown my sorrows in a song or two and some Tanqueray and tonics or five. But guess what? Michael Isaacs was off for the night. And fill-in piano player Blind Bill Graves still has no idea who I am, let alone what songs I sing, even though I've been coming to that place for 10 years.
So after downing two T & Ts, I headed home, tail firmly planted between legs.
Sunday night turned out to be lot more fun. Seth and his friend, Stephen, came over and we ate kielbasa, watched "The West Wing" and drank Captain Morgan and Diet Coke while admiring the little pumpkin I had carved. We were then joined by our friend, Jeff, his straight, Mormon brother from Colorado and the Mormon's wife. More Captain Morgan and Diet was consumed, and we all ended up at Barrage. Let me just tell you: You haven't lived until you've been to a gay bar with two Mormons. At some point Pedro, the bartender, sent us over free shots. Messiness ensued. I collapsed sometime around midnight.
So tonight, as little ghosts and goblins and big drag queens run amok outside, I am lying low, nursing my severely necrotic desiccated tooth and watching Madonna's new documentary, "I'm Going to Tell You a Secret," for the 10th time. It's a bit heavy on the Kabbalah crap, and I do have the occasional urge to beat that fake English accent out of her. But she is still a genius, and if you don't admire her work ethic and the fact that she continues to reinvent herself and remain relevant at the age of 47(!), you're an ass.
And for you gay boys who haven't seen it, brace yourself: There's a scene from her concert where she sings Evita's death montage while strapped in an electric chair:
The choice, was mine, and mine completely.
I could have any prize that I desired.
I could burn with the splendor of the brightest star.
Or else... or else I could choose time.
Remember: I was very young then.
And a year was forever and a day.
So what use could 50... 60... 70 be?
I saw the lights, and I was on my way.
And how I lived!
And how they shone!
But how soon the lights were gone.
I swear, I soiled the sofa. ♥
P.S. COME SEE ME HOST THE ELECTRO SHOCK THERAPY COMEDY HOUR THIS SUNDAY, NOV. 6 WITH SPECIAL GUESTS RANDI KAPLAN ("LAST COMIC STANDING") AND NANCI RICHARDS (WINNER, GILDA'S CLUB LAUGH OFF)!