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Sunday, February 27, 2005

The Bleedin' Gums of Torture*

My wife tells me that when our youngest was very small - a couple of years before I came along - she used to brush with an electric "Mickey Mouse" toothbrush that ran - and played a tune - when it's nose was pressed? The music was not, as you might conclude, another of those malevolent chintzy gimmicks designed to punish parents for ever having babies, but rather a clever way to keep the kiddies brushing long enough to do most good? They learned to brush until the music stopped.

Great idea.

But now... this -
A new toothbrush will come with its own soundtrack.

The toy company Hasbro has developed "Tooth Tunes," a brush that uses special technology to transmit music through the teeth to the ear.

[Tip o' the hat to Norm]
[See also Gizmodo]
Bad idea!
Terrible idea!

Torture2.jpgLet us be clear about this: your host, Bearded, is *scots... he's british. You all know what that means? In his world dentists are feared and despised, and rightly so. In his world, when someone - his own brother, for example - attains the age of twenty-one, it is still common that parents will pay to have all their remaining teeth extracted, and for a full set of falsies, chompers, teakies, wallies, fitted in their place. In his world the prevailing wisdom runs that "it's better tae get rid o' them noo, while ye're still young, tae save ye a' that trouble doon the road!"

He kids you not.

His own best pal from high school is a dentist; is married to a dentist; and is the son of a dentist, whose practise he continues. But, "Ah kennt his faither", as the saying goes - his dad was Bearded's dentist growing up. And not for nothing was he called "The Butcher".

Even here in golden California, where expensive dental care is mandatory, where Bearded has since paid for two dentists' brand-new Suburbans at the cost of his own, where the american majority in his family skip gaily towards the surgeries - even here Bearded himself remains mortified. White-knuckle terrified, in fact, of The Chair.

What is the worst part of sitting in the dentist's chair? Is it the jab, perhaps? The numbing novocaine that leaves you slopjawed and drooling? That same novocaine that eventually wears off, needling and hurting like a mutha? No. No, the worst thing, the very worst thing, is being strapped in that chair, awake!, while he drills. The smell of burning enamel is bad enough, but the noise? That piercing brain-curdling screech that shivers the skull and rimes the eyes? Surely that is the worst?

Frankly, I don't care what happy little tunes you download to your singing toothbrush - there'll be no skull rattler here!



2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is nothing new. A company called Orawave was into the tuned musical toothbrush market first with a superior product called the Tuned Musical 2-Minute Twin Spin toothbrush. Unlike the Hasbro brush --- Orawave’s has a replaceable head, comes in 4 cool designs, plays 8 DIFFERENT tunes so you get a different tune each time you brush, has a 2 minute timer, twin heads and plays music only AFTER the person has brushed for the full 2 minutes - a reward. And it sells for less than $7. Dentists recommend you change your brush heads every 3 months and since Hasbro's brush heads cannot be replaced, you will need to shell out $10, 4 times a year! 4 replacement heads for the Orawave only cost about $8 TOTAL. Hasbro's is a bad rip-off of the Orawave brush.

1:57 PM  
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