Shakes, seeds and the pik

naturesp1.jpgAfter 36 hours wearing them, I think that getting these braces may have been one of the worst decisions I ever made.

They hurt.  Although I can slap bits of wax on the worst poking bits for a little relief.  

And eating is pretty much unbearable.  Chewing with all those foreign objects attached to all my teeth?  Torture. 

Yesterday I was away from home all day.  At lunch I drank a smoothie because I couldn’t deal with the thought of eating.  By late afternoon I was starving.  Stopped by a favorite restaurant that makes great comfort food.  But all I could manage to consume – with difficulty – was a bit of soup and mashed potatoes.  Just had a tiny nibble of applesauce; boxed up the pot roast and brought it home. 

So I stopped by the grocery store and got things I can toss into the blender to keep body and soul together without chewing.  And also some instant oatmeal that looked nutritious. 

This morning I cooked up a bowlful of the oatmeal.  It’s OK, but I didn’t realize until I ate some, that it has little flax seeds in it.  Little seeds – and I have a mouthful of metal for them to hide in.

Thank goodness for my Water Pik.  I may never eat again unless I am at home and can immediately clean my braces afterwards with the Pik. 

I’ll be away from home all day today.  I’m taking two cold cans of SlimFast in a little cooler, and two straws.


Never thought I’d live to see it

The pig-out queen here doesn’t want to eat.  Who would have thought?

I’m staring at my bowl of cereal and yogurt.  It’s cereal that I like, and yogurt that I like.  (I have cereal with yogurt instead of milk because my tummy likes that better.)

There’s nothing wrong with it.  I know that this modest breakfast will keep me going through a busy morning – and this one is going to be busier than usual.cereal-1.jpg

But I don’t want to eat a bite of it.  I’ve just made myself eat some of it, and have to finish the last half because I’m going to have a really bad headache by lunchtime if I don’t eat it.

I’m not sick. 

I feel fine.

But I got a mouthful of metal braces yesterday.  And eating is a bloody nuisance.  Chewing stuff.  Feeling stuff getting stuck on the braces.  Having to clean my mouth within five minutes after eating anything.

It’s not just breakfast.  I had the same problem eating anything for dinner last night.

The whole business of eating with braces just sucks.

The doc said that these braces will be on for about six months. 

I could be really skinny by then.

Clutter and change and letting things slide

I mentioned here the other day that I’ve realized I pretty much hate almost all of my furniture.  I didn’t say so then, but the sad truth is, I’ve Allowed Things to Slide around the condo.  As Garrison Keillor explained in his recent newspaper column, they are at present working hard at cleaning over at his house because:

We are decent God-fearing people who somehow have Allowed Things To Slide and now we live among piles of books and paper, reams of driftage on the kitchen counter, boxes of mementos of a misspent life. Another month and we might go over the brink and become wild-eyed eccentrics living in rooms with narrow passages between the piles, cooking on a hotplate in the bathtub, the house reeking of cat dung.

keillor_garrison.jpgAt the Keillor house, they are having a fine time throwing out things.  At the condo, lately I’ve been having a fine time ignoring most of the mess while reading books, working on the computer to create the invoice which will get me paid for last month’s work, spending time with friends, and taking the trusty old Subaru in for its 105,000 mile mega-service.  To be fair, I’ve kept up with the laundry, and the kitchen and bathrooms are clean and presentable. 

Good old Garrison also explains I think why so many voters are excited about Senator Obama’s candidacy for the presidential nomination:

If the Democrats run on anger and the urge to pay back the God, Guns & Capital Gains Party, they’re likely to lose. Move on.  That’s my problem with Senator Clinton: If she becomes president, must we relive Renaissance Weekends and New Age narcissism, and then do we also get the return of Kenneth Starr and the Mellon man?

Heck, I’m a little excited too.  Although I sincerely believe that Senator Clinton is the better qualified candidate. 

Full column is below the fold if this link doesn’t work. Continue reading


I used to hate it back in high school, when I would be walking down the hall between classes or something and somebody, usually a guy, would look at me and bark “Smile!” like it was an order or something.  Like maybe I wasn’t providing the proper high school background crowd scene for his damn day. 

Not that I mind smiling.  Not at all.  What I have always minded is doing stuff on command.  Personal stuff like smiling or reading a novel or eating vegetables. 

My smile hasn’t aged well, though I started off in life with fairly straight teeth.   I had all four of my wisdom teeth pulled when I was in my late 20’s – in one glorious intravenous-Valium buffered sitting.  This provided lots of room at the back of my mouth for all my teeth to hang out in.  But instead, the top ones in particular gradually crowded their way to the front, and that moved the front ones out of line in all directions. align1.jpg

I KNOW already that I’m going to get old – if I’m lucky.  But I refuse to look like an elderly rabbit.  So 14 months ago I signed up for teeth-straightening with a local orthodontist.  Using the Invisalign system.  Which is a very interesting confluence of computer-assisted technology and orthodontic expertise. 

Sadly, a couple of my upper teeth aren’t moving with the rest of them, and after talking it over with my doc, I’m going to finish up the straightening in regular braces.  Yes, a semi-retired person in good old metal braces.  After cringing a little at that idea, I’ve gotten over myself.  I’m bloody pleased and grateful to have my own teeth, not to mention fully functioning limbs and major organs.

Today we got started on the braces.  The doc inserted rubber band thingies between some of my teeth to create space.  

Next week I get metal stuff glued to several of my teeth and the fun begins for real.  But only for six months or so, and it’s all paid for now.  So I’m smiling.

Getting down to basics

A few weeks ago I finally realized what’s wrong with my condo.  Why I don’t feel happy when I’ve finished cleaning and tidying the rooms.

I don’t like my furniture.  I do like the large oriental area rug in my living room that cost more than a month’s salary two years ago.  I have some bits of art that I enjoy living with.   But I keep thinking, are there any pieces of actual furniture that I might really mourn if I came home to find the place cleaned out by thieves?  And coming up blank.  OK, except for the two clean-lined 1960’s modern walnut bedroom pieces – double dresser and chest of drawers – that I bought at a secondhand store and stripped of gunky varnish.  And my cute little CD cabinet.

Otherwise?  If I ever move more than ten miles away?  I’ll leave it all behind without an eyelash flicker.

I think it’s time I found my own style.  I think I was developing one many years ago, but haven’t worked at it in a long time. 

This could be fun. 

It could also cost a boatload of money.