The Tragedy Of Orthodonture

Murphy’s Law has dictated the most recent set of circumstances happening here in the compound.


Of that, I have no doubt.


It all started several years ago when one of my beloved children made it readily apparent that he was in the process of developing a gnarly, gangly, hillbilly grill.


No offense to you hillbillies out there.


Crooked teeth tend to run in the family, at least on my side of the gene pool.   It’s sad they didn’t skip a generation in our case, but so be it.  In the last eight years, my son has had braces planted in his pie hole on two different occasions in order to curb the effects of TharpSter genetics.


At least Junior’s genetic inheritance came by way of crooked teeth instead of the missing neck.


I could tell you the story about how one night about five years ago we went to Fuddruckers for burgers, and he lost his retainer by wrapping it in a napkin and leaving it on the table.  I could go into detail about how we (Wifey mainly) rifled through their kitchen trash for an hour looking for the retainer and other creative ways to say “Fuddruckers”.


I don’t think there’s a need to do so though.  You pretty much got the gist of it all.


Two years ago this April, Junior entered into his “second phase” of braces in order to correct the horrible things that adolescence was doing to his mouth.  One of his primary problems was that his canines down below were in there sideways.  Through an elaborate system of pulley’s, cables, come-alongs, and hydraulic instruments, the orthodontist was able to pull one of those bad boys up and into place.  The other one had to be extracted.


At the same time, Juniorette has been in braces too.  She only needed one round, and had hers put on just a month or so after Junior got his second set.  You know what that means, don’t you?


Synchronized appointments and payments.


At least the payments were.


For the last two years, I’ve been hit for two payments on the first of each month.  On each occasion, I’ve requested an invoice for the billing so that I could submit the charges for reimbursement from my healthcare savings account.


The appointments haven’t always been that synchronized though.  Junior’s grill has required a different sort of attention which has kept us running back and forth.


None the less, there’s light at the end of the tunnel.  I know this because I’m just two payments from paying both of those grills off.  This was also confirmed when just the other day, Juniorette was advised that within two appointments, her braces will come off.


What a co-inky-dink!


The minute the grill is paid for, it can now come off.  I wonder if they teach orthodontists about the finer points of straightening a dental rack at the same rate as it takes to pay off a set of metal.


“But what about the boy?”  you may ask.


Hold your horses, I’m getting to that.


Junior is a senior in high school this year.  My how the time has passed.


Junior is also a musically gifted individual who has been accepted to one of the more prestigious music schools here in Texas for this coming fall.  Said school is easily a 6-7 hour drive from here at the compound, so he’ll be moving out soon.


One of the concerns at this point is what to do about his grill.  At his appointment the other day, Junior announced his intentions to the orthodontist.


“Oh, I believe he could have them out by the end of this year.  It will just be a matter of making sure he gets back every 4-6 weeks for an adjustment.”


Well crud.


I had hoped to take the boy to parts of Texas so far north that it was considered south Oklahoma, and leave him there.  I guess he’ll have to come home a few times now.


Since he’s not taking a car, that means we’ll have to go get him and take him back every once in awhile.  That will suck about twenty hours out of any given weekend and raise the potential mortality rates for anyone I encounter on I-35 driving slow in the left lane.


City of Austin, I’m talking to you.


The alternative is to fly him in and out on the given weekends.  This gives those idiots on I-35 a better chance for survival if you ask me.


Consider this, ladies and gentlemen.


At some point this fall, Junior will have to take time out of his precious day to get to the airport and board a plane bound for San Antonio and what used to be is room which is now my mancave for the sole purpose of having a middle aged man put gloved hands and an assortment of dental instruments in his mouth.  At some point when Junior is wandering around DFW wondering if he has enough quarters to buy an iPod from the vending machine, he will make a smart ass remark to a TSA agent.


As I said before, adolescence has done some horrible things to his mouth.


The TSA agent, being short on his or her groping quota for the day, will opt to cull Junior from the herd for additional scrutiny and subsequent abuse of his 4th Amendment rights.


All of this ladies and gentlemen, will be executed with the goal of getting rid of that under bite.


Watch your mouth, Junior.

Randy Tharp

TharpSter is a husband to one woman, a father to two kids, a master to two dogs, an occasional cubical occupant, and unable to make up his mind on an adequate theme for this website.

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