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I Would Finish My Book On Time If…

It was 9 million degrees. The person in this suit lost twelve pounds and then died of heatstroke before being allowed to enjoy their smaller jeans size. Tragic.

ALL MY ONE THOUSAND CHILDREN will stop having stomach flu, going camping and befriending several thousand lice that have to be poisoned and then hand combed out 4 hours a day for 3 days, and then falling on treadmills and banging their ADULT PERMANENT front teeth out. Actually that is all the one child. The other is being PERFECTLY UNOBTRUSIVE so I expect his leg to come off at track today.

What happened with the tooth was, she was playing on a treadmill she was not allowed to play on under any circumstances, unless the circumstances were “She really wanted to, and no one explicitly told her on that particular day that she could not.”

She was, of course, three hours away in Alabama. Heh.

Maisy called me while I was at DECATUR BOOK FEST, in line to get her Captain Underpants Book signed. She said she was “getting dressed to work out,” and then kept on talking, and while she talked I thought, “I hope she won’t get on that treadmill. I should reiterate no treadmill. But no, she knows not to get on the treadmill.” And I did not reiterate it and she got RIGHT on the treadmill.

Dear Mothers, When your Loin Spawn next says to you, “GAR MOM YOU TOLD ME THAT ALREADY!!! WHY DO YOU HAVE TO SAY EVERYTHING 2,000 TIMES???” well, this is why. Say to them, because I love how you look with each of your teeth in a single piece. Say that. Love, Me.

I was still in line for Captain Underpants when the call came from my mother that she had borkened a chunk of her tooth RIGHT the heck out of her head. She was distraught and very worried she might not get her underpants book signed. Also, it hurt.

LUCKILY when it happened Scott was 15 minutes away, so I stayed in the Underpants line and LOOK what that awesome Dav Pilkey did for her. Also his INCREDIBLY NICE WIFE bought Maisy a copy of SMILE, an excellent graphic novel about a girl just one year older than Maisy who breaks HER front teeth out.

Classy. People.

Scott was so close because was going to a golf date with my dad. By the way? The last time he had a golf date with my dad? My father’s retina spontaneously detached while Scott was driving there.

They can never golf again. People could DIE if they try to golf again. Nations could crumble. Apocalypse stuff. Undead horsemen could attack and the twelve razored fates could fall upon Atlantis. No good can come of their golfing. SERIOUSLY.

Nine hours and two emergency rooms later, the broken tooth was sealed. Two OUT OF STATE EMERGENCY ROOMS. Do you know anyone who wants to buy a kidney?

The sealed tooth is shorter than its twin, but this is not terrible because of her age. It kinda looks like a tooth that is still growing in. Lots of kids in her class are rocking this exact look.

The root was hurt and the nerve was exposed for a bit though, so that was fun. We can’t do anything for two weeks, to make sure no infection got into the nerve while it was hanging out exposing itself.

At that point, the dentist will tell us if she is healed or if the damaged tooth could NOT heal and then she will need a root canal. Either way, she will then need braces. Then a cap. At which point I will SO pleased I was born with two kidneys as I will need to sell the other.

YEARS ago, Maisy was writing a letter to my brother and she said to Sam, “How do you spell UNCLE BOBBY?” Sam was Gaming, and he said, “AY PEE PEE ELLE EE BEE OH BEE BEE WHY.” Maisy wrote that down, did not read it, just assumed Sam would know how to spell Uncle Bobby. Which he did. He also knew how to spell APPLE BOBBY and had NO reason to think he might have misheard the original query. Why wouldn’t a person want to write the words APPLE BOBBY….

My brother has been Apple Bobby ever since. Here is the card Apple Bobby made for her:

16 comments to I Would Finish My Book On Time If…

  • Lise

    Poor Maisy! My daughter broke her top and bottom front teeth when she was seven, leaving a beautiful diamond-shape gap in her smile. Our dentist bonded them, and you absolutely cannot tell that they are not full teeth. Even her orthodontist was fooled. She did have to have a root canal in one of the top teeth as a teenager, and apparently being head-butted by one’s sister in one’s mouth is contraindicated, but the bonding was easily re-done in both those cases.

  • Boy#2 knocked his front teeth out by tripping on a piece of shag in the carpet and falling into a decorative crock. He was only two so these were baby teeth and not a world-ending problem, even though I cried for two days looking at his beautiful demolished face. Then when he was six and had FINALLY had his permanents for a couple of months, he and his brother were wrestling in the bathroom and…well, you know where this is going. Porcelain sink beats teeth enamel every time. Now he’s 23 and a handsome dude. Maisy will be gorgeous.

  • Oh, dear. What is it with dental emergencies this summer? (Though a Dav Pilkey autograph might almost be worth one.)

    The ToolMaster got a call from the school one morning long ago. “Did your son have all his teeth when he arrived this morning?”

    “…I’m pretty sure he did.”

    Turns out one of “Frank’s” grade-one classmates had an indisputably hard head, so a playground collision led to all manner of dental dealings. No kidneys involved, though.

  • Um. . .ouch–both for Maisy’s tooth AND your pocket book. I have a breaking my front teeth out story too–but I was three and they weren’t permanent. Of course they didn’t grow back in until I was ten, which was kinda not cool, but I’m assuming that Maisy will not get on the treadmill again. And that you will now be able to save many, many, MANY remonstrances by just saying, “Remember the Treadmill!!!” much as one might say, “Remember the Alamo!!!” That should stop both Maisy AND her brother (who hopefully kept both legs at track) from arguing things.

  • As a fellow mother, I feel your pain. As a fellow writer, I sympathise. As your biggest fan, I say: “finish the damned book already, I can’t wait to read it”… ;-))))

  • Bad crap always happens when the mother is away somewhere. I am just about to leave (tomorrow morning and I might run away and not return) for SIBA in Naples, FL. I just can’t wait to see what awful thing happens in the four days I’m gone. I’m really sorry about the tooth and the bill. Smile really IS the perfect gift for her.

  • Jennifer in NC

    My cousin’s grandchild had a mishap involving a treadmill THAT HE WAS NOT SUPPOSED TO TOUCH. He also had been warned 2,000 times. He is only 5, so maybe it takes 2,001 times for a five year old. Anyway, his injury was mild- just a busted lip. Later in the day, after the tears had dried, my cousin asked her grandson if he learned any lessons that day, hoping he would respond “Listen to Grandma and don’t play on the treadmill.” Instead he replied “Don’t push 9!” This is my new motto for life. If you’re gonna jump on the treadmill, don’t start with the highest speed! Out of the mouths of babes…

    Hope Maisy feels better soon!

  • Mary

    Oh, I hope Maisy feels better and you do too!
    I had both front teeth knocked out when I was in High School, playing field hockey. The stitches in my mouth that needed to heal before anything else could be done. I got to walk around HIGH SCHOOL without teeth. And the boy I had a crush on (way too old and not in high school any more) chose that week to strike up a conversation with me. I just smiled with my lips tight, and got out of there fast.

  • jeanette in peculiar

    I have been treadmill shopping for several days. I am taking this as a sign to be sure to disable the thing any time my granddaughter comes over! Actually I wanted to take it as a sign to NOT get a treadmill, but then I realized if I am dead from lack of exercise and high blood pressure then I will be unable to read any more of your books or blog posts.

    Oddly enough, I have also had a tooth incident within the last few days. As I was standing in front of the bathroom sink, my cat made an odd noise behind me and as I turned around I heard an odd “plinky” sound. Looked down and there was a tooth! Just fell right out, root and all. Good news……with the bad tooth gone, her breath has improved mightily AND her drooling has ceased. Who knew??

    I have thus far avoided any interactions with head lice or giant underpantsed inflatable captains, but if I meet up with either of those things any time soon, I fear I will secretly blame you. Sorry.

  • kim

    One of my friends ran smack into a brick wall in 4th grade PE and knocked out both her grown up front teeth — presumably because no one reminded her not to run into walls?

    Dav was great AND his wife is lovely!! (You and Lydia were also great and lovely.) But I totally would have pulled y’all to the front of the line if you had mentioned Maisy’s tooth.

  • JMixx

    A child in pain! Who has created the pain with disobedience! Which will cost big bucks to repair! It’s the Trifecta of childhood!

    See, this is the reason that I don’t have the nerve to be a parent. Do you have the urge to hug and hold,cuddle and comfort, and strangle and scream and stomp, all at the same time? Because I think I would. And I fear that there would be a faint *pop*, a wisp of blue-gray smoke, and an odor of burnt neurons, as I completely and totally short-circuited.

    Not a great look for me, and not a very comforting parental figure for a child.

    All of which is to say, I am so sorry! For you and for Beautiful Maisy, and the kidneys and the dental visits. And, while I love Apple Bobby, Captain Underpants leaves me nonplussed.

  • Hmm. I left my youngest with his aunt this summer (who is FIFTY this year and should know better) and he asked if he could jump from the lifeguard stand. She asked what I would say, he said ‘no’ and she told him to go ahead. He knocked a filling out of his tooth, but since I was more concerned with his bloody nose I didn’t catch it for a few days. Luckily, it was a baby tooth, so when it got infected and they couldn’t do a root canal, pulling it wasn’t as traumatic as it could have been, although the three visits to three separate dentists weren’t the field trips I had in mind. This must be the summer of the tooth. (I’d rather it was the summer of the gin and tonic, but hey.)

    Big hugs to little Miss Maisy. I’m sure her smile will be just as bright as always.

  • JMixx

    @liz michalski: GAAH! The Summer of the Tooth???

    That is worse than the original “Jaws!”

    “Just when you thought it was safe to get back in the chair…”

  • Haydn once demanded a Captain Underpants birthday party. I made a cake shaped like tighty-whities. And we saved the crotch piece for hsi daddy, because I’m nice like that.

  • This is very interesting and all but I wanted you to know that when my eyes hit the word “horsemen” I was instantly made aware for the first time in my life that it contains the word “semen.”

    I will never, ever unsee that. And now neither will you.

  • Pam

    It doesn’t get any better as they get older. My daughter, now almost 28, decided she didn’t like playing flag football in gym class her Freshman year in high school. So she tried to tackle the cutest boy in the class (of course) and ran smack into his very muscular chest. She shattered all four of her lower front teeth to the nerve. Fortunately it happened about 10am so we could run to the dentist right away. He was able to fix them pretty well, but I told her if she needs crowns on those teeth she had to pay for them herself, lol.