Fighting tooth and nail over star status

My husband and I are engaged in a little healthy competition to see who can be our dentist’s pet. It’s a ridiculous contest that sees us brushing and flossing more than usual.

It started when I visited the dentist for a routine check up. He told me I had hard plaque on some teeth, and showed me how to floss better.

Then, he brought out soft picks and suggested I could use that for a quick fix in the middle of the day. I guess they’re not common because he launched into a briefing about what they are.

I stopped him. “I know all about them. Claus uses them all the time,” I said.

“Really?” Dr. Young said in surprise.

“Yes. They’re scattered all about his car. He uses them all the time,” I confirmed.

“And he still flosses?” the doc clarified.

“Yes, he’s crazy about dental hygiene. Flosses and brushes for a long time every night,” I verified.

At this point, Dr. Young was smiling. “Claus is my best patient,” he beamed, then offered a mildly strange title meant to honor by calling Claus his “godpatient.”

I laughed. Then I gnashed my inner teeth.

Godpatient? Best patient?

This is my dentist, buddy. I’ve been seeing the Youngs since I had teeth. First the dad, Joe, and then the son, Collyer, after Joe retired.

Claus is a newcomer to this office. I referred him some years ago after he needed to find a new dentist.

When I went home and told Claus about this small slight, he just laughed at me. Laughed with his mouth wide open, passive aggressively showing off all his perfect, pearly whites that garnered such acclaim.

Oh, two can play at that game. I wanted him to know how excellent my dental care is, too.

I have started brushing and flossing after every single thing I eat, then notifying Claus, if he is near. We’re in the living room and I’ll step away to brush, proudly announcing when I return how clean my teeth feel.

Before we go anywhere together, I’ll tell him I need to brush first. He calls me on the phone in the day, and I’ll comment that I’m just about to use a soft pick. At night, I run the Sonicare for not one, but two cycles.

He’s biting back. He antagonizes me by sending me texts that he’s flossing. The other night, he stood at the shower door and just started imperiously at me while flossing for many minutes.

I’m not certain how long this will go on. But one thing is for darn sure. I better have the cleanest bill of health at my next visit.

Diane Ako

Peace of mind By Diane Ako I like to reflect on life. Sometimes it’s philosophically. Sometimes it’s humorously. For all its beauty, life is far too difficult a journey to take alone. You need the support and connection with others to help carry you along the way. Writing brings me that connection– within and without. It clarifies my thoughts and feelings. It helps me reach out to others for advice, wisdom, or feedback. Your thoughts become your actions. Your actions become you. A wise yogi- Patanjali- said, “Speak what is true. Speak what is pleasant.” Let’s speak of things pleasant to one another and seek some peace of mind along the way. ABOUT Diane Ako joined Hawaii: In Real Life in October 2016. She likes being part of a community of local bloggers – people who like writing and sharing, like she does. Ako is an anchor/ reporter at Island News (KITV4 – ABC) in Honolulu. She previously anchored and reported at KHON2 (FOX) and KHNL (NBC), and at stations in California, New Mexico, and Pennsylvania, In between news jobs, in 2017, she launched and ran her own p.r. company, Diane Ako PR. From 2010-2014, she headed the public relations department at Halekulani Corporation, which oversees luxury resort Halekulani and boutique hotel Waikiki Parc. She’s been blogging since 2009 – before Hawaii: IRL, she wrote for The Honolulu Star-Advertiser, the state’s largest daily newspaper, where her stories garnered a dozen journalism awards and an Emmy nomination. Ako has a BA in Communications from Menlo College and an MA in Political Science from University of Hawaii at Manoa. One day, she might figure out how to put that master’s degree to use.

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