31 May, 2010


egged on by angry shouts of "hey lady!" and "poo" i return, chastened, to the keyboard. what, oh what, shall i tell you today, my patient little poultries, hm? how about a tale about a barmaid who was actually a princess!? would that do? ok.

last friday, after working for a stretch of multiple days, something i am admittedly not used to, i was having a decent sort of a day, unsullied by rude co-workers* or week-old tuna sandwiches wedged between filthy molars. in came jane,*** the barmaid from a local watering hole. when i asked her how she was, she sighed and made some sort of non-committal grunt. this was my first red flag: anyone who can't be bothered to maintain the most vestigial forms of social politeness has Issues. and hey, jim, i'm a doctor, not an ornithologist, so i don't do Issues. still, because i'm so fucking nice, i persisted and she warmed up to me somewhat.

jane: i just want you to know that i have sinus issues. you can't put the chair back very far. because then i cough. because my sinus drains. and i had a VERY late night last night, so i am exhausted and i will need to yawn a lot.

moi: ...ok. let's see if we can make this work.

moi (in my head): are you absolutely certain that your coughing is due to the mythical "sinus issues" and not to the pack a day habit that i can smell from here?

jane: i have very sensitive teeth. be careful.

moi: i will be gentle.

moi (in my head): suck it up and cope princess. sweet lord on a fucking stick. what are you, fourteen****?

this went on at length. i cleaned her teeth. i placed some desensitizing solution on them for her. i was gentle. i coddled. i smiled. i gently joked. i let her have her "sinus" cough every 32.7 seconds, as well as a theatrical yawn ever 48.2 seconds. i sat her almost vertically, so that i had to twist myself into a goddamn yogic pretzel. i was bloody nice. i accommodated. i periodically asked her how she was doing, the answer to which was a deep and heartfelt sigh. cause, you know, life is HARD. and at the end, i didn't even get a fucking thank you.

sometimes, i want to kick people in the teeth. on the island, it doesn't happen quite as often as it did in the frozen hellhole of fort mcmurray, but goddamn, some people really need to learn to put on their big girl pants and go to war.

*my temporary wednesdays in ladysmith, on the other hand, are quite sullied by a co-worker who seems to have taken instant and deep dislike to me, putting me in somewhat unfamiliar territory, seeing as i am so fucking likable** to both patients and staff.

**you think i jest, but oddly enough this is actually true: with some notable exceptions (mentally unbalanced people, every last one) i am actually very well liked at work. i save my bitterness and rancour for these here pages while my patients get the very best of me. i am heartily sorry, but you come here of your own free will whereas they get poked by me with sharp metal instruments, so it all works out in the end.

***names have been changed because i have a shitty memory.

****what is it with women of a certain age (40's and up) who act as though they have been raised on a fucking unicorn farm in the clouds? huh? she works IN A BAR, i'm pretty sure she's not made of silk, cashmere and pearl dust, you know what i'm saying?

25 May, 2010

while watching "in the mood for love"*

moi: god, look at her in those dresses! in my next life i want a body like that. if i wore a dress like hers, i'd look like a sausage.

*one of the loveliest looking movies i've seen. i'm an idiot for having waited this long. so if you haven't seen it, stop being an idiot and go rent it now.

from a bunch of teenagers, overheard on the skytrain

guy: the g spot is 3 inches inside the vagina.

group: what? how the hell do you know that?

guy: i fucking research this shit.

girl: "vaginas for dummies"?

guy: yeah. that's it.

21 May, 2010

assorted body parts

look, i realise that i have it good. i am well aware of what a lucky lucky girl i am. it's beyond belief, really. but at no time does this seem more obvious than at my weekly nail filing. no, i don't go to a salon.* i do it at home. and as i sit on the toilet (shut) or the side of the tub, and file my nails, all i do is bitch inside my head (sometimes a little outside my head too) about HOW FUCKING FAST MY NAILS GROW and as i see my whole long life stretching before me all i can think of is that i will have to continue to file my fucking nails for as long as i live (but thankfully, judging from scientific reports written by eminent corpsologists, not after).

in fact, i am getting a little tired of all this corporeality and its ceaseless management. the flossing, the brushing, the filing, the cutting, the washing, the moisturizing, the conditioning, the shampooing, the powdering,** the trimming, the shaving, the exfoliating etc. etc. etc. and y'all know how low maintenance i am, so these are just the basics.

and when i get tired of all this stuff, i realise that to even have that pop up as an issue in my life, even a marginal, tiny little, whiny PMS-fueled issue, shows me to be a pampered first world fluff bunny with nary a problem in sight. after all, i could be an amputee, a rape victim, starving, paralysed, or, to simplify things a bit, DEAD.

so, to sum up: suck it up and cope, girlfriend!

*no comment on salon manicures. just: no comment.
**ok, not the powdering. i have never powdered anything except for my nose, and that i don't mind doing. even with the size of that sucker it takes merely seconds and i look like a girly girl while i do it.

15 May, 2010

revelations to boggle the collective mind

as i walked along the beach today, i suddenly realised that in all likelihood i am not as smart now* as i was ten years ago. at this rate of mental deterioration the best i can hope for is that in another ten years i will be too stupid to care.

every time i walk along the beach i harbour a strange half-hope half-fear that i will discover a body part of some kind, gnawed by crabs but still recognizably human. this time i talked myself into this so completely that at one point in my walk i found myself getting impatient and thinking, come ON already! where's the goddamn finger? i haven't got all day!

i dare you to come up with a definition of "tendency" off the top of your head that does not have the word "tend" in it. it's not easy, is it? huh? or is this just the hangover talking? probably the latter. never mind, carry on.

ah yes, the hangover. last night we had a double date with a couple we had met at a slow food event several weeks ago. they love food. they love wine. they love to talk. let's just say we clicked. last night's dinner reaffirmed the clickage and we ate, laughed, talked and drank our way through a delicious greek feast. good times. let's just say i woke up this morning feeling less than stellar. when will i learn?**

so what's with the silent treatment? haven't i been good to you? haven't i given you free dermatological advice obtained at great personal pain and suffering? haven't i tried to entertain you? haven't i bared my soul? come on, you bastards***, talk to me!!!

* i blame the drink, what else?

** judging by the above-mentioned galloping stupidity, probably never.

***and i mean that quite fondly, i hope you know that.

13 May, 2010

poultries, pretty poultries

one of the members of the dermatologist's Staff Of Many, informed me, in the hushed tones of one defying the boss's edicts*, that she routinely uses neutrogena SPF 30 moisturiser and when summer comes, she switches to SPF 50. to counteract the bluish whiteness of the aluminum thingoxide (fucked if i can remember), she mixes in a little of her foundation. and now i've shared this secret with you.

let me tell you - the woman had fantastic skin. i think it's time for my SPF 15 to be downgraded to use on the hoof-like skin on my dainty size 42 feet.

*i believe he preferred that she sell their own overpriced cremes and mousses made from the ground up horns of unicorns and stardust. or the microdermabrasion.

11 May, 2010

louboutins? i think not!

today i paid 200 clams for a british expat with a posh accent to inject three syringes of saline-sucrose solution into my legs. i think the next time spider veins creep up my legs i'll cook some up and get mr. monkey to do the honours. even with the passing out he'd get it done eventually.

the paper towel draped over my ass for modesty's sake kept falling off while i tried to tune out the semi-enthusiastic sales pitch regarding the laser resurfacing system and phenomenally priced microdermabrasion. i guess i'd better accept that i am now squarely and securely in the midst of the nip-and-tuck demographic (although in these days of 13 year olds getting breast "augmentations" i shouldn't get my (exposed) panties in a knot).

for a minute there i wondered what it would be like to get my skin "resurfaced." until the price came up. riiiight. i think i've lived this long with my disturbingly large pores, i can live with them a wee while longer.

the appointment began auspiciously when i checked in with the receptionist. she looked at the computer and said (in a friendly enough manner), "oh, so you did get our message."

this irked me somewhat. friendly still, i answered that yes, i did get their message. both the first one i received a month ago that i returned within minutes and the second call last thursday in which i was informed, in an ever-so-slightly chilly tone that if i didn't call them back immediately i would forfeit this appointment (for which i have been waiting since january). i returned this phone call just as promptly only to be faced with the vapid surprise that i had shown up at all.

as i explained all this, i made a point of mentioning the slightly cranky tone of last week's message. this obviously pissed off the second receptionist, who must have been the one to make the call, and who began muttering to herself, old-lady-like, repeatedly under her breath "mumble mumble cranky mumble mumble." she did this right in front of me. it was weird.

perhaps she is really 98 years old and only the youthful glow of her complexion had me fooled.

my legs now feel like i have been attacked by a swarm of mosquitos but in a month or so i shall dazzle the world with my flawless epidermis (barring any unforeseen circumstances...like walking into bushes, tripping on curbs, scratching myself compulsively while sleeping or pretty much any of the million things that stand between moi and epidermal (or really any other) perfection).

love letters to the pope

up at 6 with the sun and singing birds, watching the waves do their thing, feeling good.

of course the reason i was up at 6 was because i am married to a man with the limited aural capacity of a retired artillery major. each and every morning is accompanied by the soundtrack of crashes, slams, rustlings and various clonkings. nevermind that the man has his lunch made for him by a loving wife each and every day, he feels that somehow this is not enough and more bread needs to be extricated from the overpacked freezer, unwrapped, sliced, rewrapped, shoved back in and the door slammed; more soup needs to be poured into the ceramic container that has just been dropped, picked up, and dropped again; things need to be violently thrown into the recycling container, etc.

this, of course, on top of the sinus-cleansing ceremony that every man i have ever known feels the need to engage in. why is it that women maintain their sinus health without tromboning all over the bathroom sink at 5:47 each and every morning? i suspect it's the same gene that causes men to spend innumerable hours on the toilet engaged in what ought to be a fairly routine bowel movement.

now all this, in the darkest depths of winter, isn't enough to get me up before me allotted time. at this time of year, however, the brutal sun gets in on the action and pokes me repeatedly in the eyeballs until i sigh resignedly and get the hell up.

good morning, world.

09 May, 2010

norah jones has slightly crossed eyes - did you know that? you're welcome!

today we were given two bottles of chocolate orange port, several half empty bottles of hard liquor, and a big pile of national geographics* by an american whom we fed vast quantities of beets last night.

yes, another company dinner chez les monkeys.

the he and the she are lovely people who eat, drink, guffaw and even occasionally use Bad Words, god love'em. no behaving was necessary...well, minimal behaving. when it comes to mr. monkey's co-workers, he always hopes i keep the "motherfuckers" to a bare minimum, and for absolute emphasis only.

we had a good time and i managed to not talk about sex (too much) and to not mention our recent purchase.** this last bit was hard because mr. monkey thinks it's not anybody's business, whereas i, well, you might have noticed that i have a little trouble with the concept of "not anybody's business" (as evidenced repeatedly and thoroughly on le blog).

i have to say i love these early social events when i can crawl into bed more than a little tipsy and pass out before 11pm.

* it's not the lamest hostess gift ever: they're moving back to the deep south.

**land! beautiful land! ridiculously close to salty water and mountains! with trees! and neighbourhood goats! and cowses! and friendly baby cowses! and a large shed! and horses! and chickens ranging freely and depositing eggs in various interesting locales! and a farm stand! and sealions barking! and..and...and...it's GREAT!!! (all animals are neighbouring animals only and will not rely on me to feed or house them, so don't y'all be calling the SPCA on me, ok?)

08 May, 2010

a little bit of polish

no, i will not post drunk. you can plead all you want, but i'm just not gonna do it. all the mean anonymouses will gang up on me, and i cannot handle it. i just cannot. i'm too fragile emotionally. so you can just go away. i'm going to do a couple of hard rounds of spider solitaire and call it a night.

stop staring. i'm not changing my mind. i'm just not. besides, i have nothing to report. another flawless dinner with a couple of mr. monkey's co-workers.

now go away and take that pathetic romanian orphan pout with you!


just go now.


jesus, whatddya want me to do? call the cops? get a restraining order? you'll just have to entertain yourselves tonight. i'm sorry.

good night.

06 May, 2010

just toss my soul with some homemade pesto and some freshly grated pecorino romano

yesterday i had a patient who had absolutely no interest in watching the food network. i know. weird, huh? i mean, who doesn't love the food network? isn't it like hating...puppies? jesus? chocolate?

as i cleaned her teeth i thought and thought and experienced a sudden epiphany: she is about food the way i am about horses and boats.

i will (semi)enthusiastically ride a horse* provided its oil has been changed and its hooves polished (or whatever it is one needs to do to a horse to make it ready to ride; i really don't want to know). afterwards, you can take the horse away and lube its glands or hoover its mane. i don't care. just don't ask me to participate.

boats? same thing. i shall get on a sailboat and look pretty. hell, i'll even sheet in or out, provided you give me clear instructions, but if you want me to roll the ropes into neat little serpents, or to scrape barnacles from the hull, well, you'll have to find yourself another sucker, 'cause i'm out of there.

and this is precisely the way this woman felt about food: she likes the finished product but has no interest whatsoever in the work required to bring it to the table.

this for some reason made me respect her oddness and i promptly changed the channel to "breakfast at tiffany's," 'cause dude, who doesn't love "breakfast at tiffany's"?

* i assume. it's been a good long while.

05 May, 2010

the three nippled freak speaks out against discrimination

well, my little poultries, it's good and well that tomorrow is my last day at this particular office. after yesterday's little stabbing/drowning incident, i thought i'd had enough. today was a lovely half day, until in the last minutes of my last patient, a large chunk of the metal tip of my instrument broke off inside the patient's mouth, ricocheted off her tooth and went flying into ether. she must have seen the panic in my eyes, because she calmly told me, "it went that-a-way, don't worry."

let us hope that tomorrow i don't gouge someone's eyeball out, or carve out a tonsil, or shove a handful of double ended hu-friedy gracey curettes down their throat. fingers crossed?

hurray for friday, house cleaning and laundry day, a day in which my chances of inflicting harm on an innocent bystander are fairly low.

remember, cross those fingers, i have no idea what the wi-fi situation is like in women's maximum security prison and i know you'd miss me.

04 May, 2010

everybody has two nipples and that's the way the world is

first of all, no, i am not pregnant. i am finally enjoying a lovely quiet life and i am not about to throw that to the pack of howling rabid wolves they call babies. no, thank you. so shut up.

second of all...shit, i lost my train of thought and it has only just pulled out of the station. this is getting sadly pathetic and increasingly indicative of what old age is going to be like. i won't even have the mental wherewithal to be a bitter old bitch, because i won't remember why i need to be bitter. instead i will sit there smiling vaguely at everyone, the smiley brain dead grandma, that'll be me, and I AM SO NOT INTERESTED IN THAT PARTICULAR SCENARIO!!!

oh, ok, now i know what i wanted to tell you.

i might have recently confessed that i have made my peace with the world of teeth. one of the reasons that i still occasionally wish i could be alphabetising books safe in some dusty library somewhere is because of the possibility of bodily harm that my job entails. now i don't mean to me. i do just fine walking into walls while wildly swinging my gigantic hands into sharp corners and tripping over my ludicrously large feet etc. i mean my patients.

case in point:

my second patient: a nice older lady with half a set of usable dentition.

as i start to scrape her teeth, my hand (which is holding an instrument of moderate sharpness) slips and i end up stabbing* her in the cheek. this is only the second time this has ever happened to me (kind of miraculous, now that i think about it!) but i am immediately mortified. mortified. i am already swimming in belly sweat because the office is satanically overheated this morning and i now break out in a cold sweat on top of my hot sweat. it ain't pretty. my hands start to shake. i apologize the shaken lady who's just been stabbed. jesus. can i be an apple stacker at save-on-foods? please?

not three seconds later i want to rinse her mouth and, lo and behold, the metal tip of the air-water syringe is improperly inserted and she ends up with water sprayed all over her face plus a little up her nose for good measure. this alarms me so much i drop my suction which, of course, hits the floor, so i have nothing to suck up the water with. i continue to apologize while enjoying the steady drip of several more layers of nervous sweat. i am fairly certain the sleeves of my tunic are soaking wet. jesus.

the rest of the appointment goes without a hitch but it takes me a good half hour to calm the fuck down and another hour or two to reestablish a modicum of self respect and faith in my ability as a dental professional.

so, how was your day?

*in the interests of accuracy, please be advised that due to the melodramatic nature of this publication, i may or may not be exaggerating: the "stab" wound was no bigger than a pin prick, and generated no blood, but what's the literary fun in that?

02 May, 2010


last week was filled with flailing autistic teenagers, preteens with behavioural problems, wheelchair bound developmentally delayed middle aged men with horrid skin conditions and (thankfully) very few teeth, jumpy elderly cancer survivors with verbal diarrhea and a very low pain threshold, as well as many many others. in short, it was a week to knock the stuffing out of one very tired polish chick. and lo, the weekend was good and now another monday's basket of mixed dental nuts beckons.

some news might be forthcoming, but i will say nothing so as not to jinx things.

sorry about the irregular posting. too busy playing spider solitaire and drinking wine, as per usual.