Tooth story

Out, damned tooth! Out, I say!

Yes, the cracked tooth finally came out… in two pieces, quickly and painlessly. The young surgeon who operated on me did an excellent job. It took him less than 20 minutes to extract the cursed tooth and I barely felt anything. Bless his young soul… and dexterity.

The tooth puller – Jan Steen

I left the periodontist’s office with a crooked smile on my face. I didn’t know if the left side of my mouth still existed, but I didn’t care. The tooth was out and I was (surprisingly) pain free.
We are far from the barbaric teeth pulling methods popularized by countless paintings or illustrations.

But then, two hours later, after the local anesthesia wore off, came the pain; a sharp excruciating, throbbing pain. It was so intense that it brought tears to my eyes. I did not know if I should lie down or walk around, so I did both with no appreciable results.

I gobbled up 2 Ibuprofen tablets in a quick succession, but the pain remained. As recommended, I applied a cold pad to the throbbing area but with no immediate visible effects.

In retrospect, I was right to apprehend this procedure.
“Minor surgery is an operation performed on somebody else.”

Little by little though the pain abated. I don’t know if the ice pad trick did it, but the horrible pain slowly faded away. Will it come back? I don’t know, but right now I am enjoying this relatively pain free moment.

A modern tooth pulling procedure is somewhat pain free, but the aftermath is a tad different. With surgery (even minor) there is always a price to pay… otherwise people would be constantly under the knife.
The best policy is to avoid (as long as you can) surgery… the aftermath is always worse than claimed.

Now would be the ideal moment to light a joint… Medical emergency you know… But I don’t have any of the “Mellow Yellow” stuff handy. Where is my purveyor of illicit pleasures when I need him? Just like a cop… never there when you desperatly need him.

The pain is finally receding… I might live…


I find that most men would rather have their bellies open for five hundred dollars than have a tooth pool for five. Martin H. Fisher

Pierre Joske Memorial Park

Our pétanque field, formerly known as the “Marin pétanque field”, was just officially re-christened the “Pierre Joske Pétanque Park.

This happened yesterday in front of a sizable crowd, some county officials and the surviving members of the Pierre Joske family.

Maryse Joske

Pierre who passed away in 2011 was the Parks and Recreation Director for Marin County for many years and did much to promote parks and open spaces. His wife Maryse, and 3 children and grandchildren survive him.

It was a late but well deserved homage for a French immigrant who did so much to develop many parks and promote our sport. I did not know this Pierre personally, but by all accounts he was true gentleman.

“Pierre Joske, a brilliant civic leader who spearheaded formation of the Marin County Open Space District and launched a string of regional parks during his 17 years as Marin’s parks and recreation chief, died at 83.”

The Board of Directors of la Pétanque Marinière deserves high praise for this affair. They provided tables and chairs for the picnic as well as a tasty catered lunch.

They also organized a raffle to benefit our club and a Shooting and Pointing contest for some our macho players.
Mark Shirkey by the way is the winner of the pointing contest, and Joe la Torre took first place for the shooting.
Congratulations lads!

Incidentally, I think that being on the mark is swell, but as a photographer I am partial to style, and some of our members have got it.

I will let you be the judges, but personally I think that Liza Moran, Brigitte Moran, Louis Toulon and Mark Shirkey (Travolta style) are among our most photogenic players. I don’t know about winning, but they have got style, and for me this supersedes a few measly wins.

Everybody will agree that it was a fun and busy day, particularly for me who shot over 600 pictures with 3 different cameras. Results vary but I think that I scored a few good shots.

If you like (some of) the pictures, drop me a line. I could live for two months on a good compliment.

Au revoir et a bientôt!


Tooth and nail

You probably seldom think about it, but when a tooth acts up you will be quickly reminded that every single part of your anatomy matters. And when that glitch happens, you will pray for a quick fix.

It says “painless”

A few days ago, while munching on a bagel, I cracked a tooth. I very distinctly felt it. A fairly common occurrence I have been told… but it hurts. Not a big hurt, but a constant throbbing reminder that it needs to be fixed.

After consultation, my dentist decreed that the tooth had to go… and should be replaced by an implant,  fitted with a crown.
I don’t look forward to that procedure. My mouth is an extremely personal area and very few people are privy to it.

My periodontist in turn assured me that the tooth extraction would be painless. I cannot help but being dubious. Isn’t it what the executioner told Robespierre on the scaffold? “Don’t worry citoyen Robespierre, you won’t feel a thing.”
Oh yeah?

Actually that’s what I want. A painless procedure. Whenever somebody has to violate the sanctity of my body, I don’t want to know about every gory detail of the modus operandi. I am fully aware that you can now request local anesthesia and watch the surgeon tinker with your organs on a  monitor. But I am not a masochist.

My last surgery lasted over 5 hours. I have no idea what the dozen surgeons and nurses in charge did and I definitely don’t want to know.
My admonition to my doctors is always: “Do your job my good man. Knock me out and wake me up when you are done.” If the whole thing does not work as planned, I will be in no position to enquire about what went wrong.

Finally, when it comes to surgery, the most frightening thing is not the deed itself. It is the Godzilla tab looming over the horizon, ready to pounce on you. What can I do with my puny insurance shield?

I will dispose of my damaged tooth next week. The surgeon looks like a capable young man… I trust him implicitly.

Hasta la vista compañeros!

Alain 😎

Happiness is your dentist telling you it won’t hurt and then having him catch his hand in the drill.Johnny Carson