Wednesday, March 13, 2013

13. Bob Dylan's Dentist - March, 2013

Living in Los Angeles comes with its own unique brand of surprises.

You never know where the latest bizarre celebrity story is going to come from.

I was sitting in a dentist chair recently, leaning back the way only a dentist chair can force you to lean back. I was looking up at the ceiling waiting for the dentist to begin poking around in my mouth, when I overheard a conversation about Bob Dylan's teeth.

The two dentists in the office were ignoring me. They were talking about their favorite music. They seemd to agree on classic rock. I felt a strong impulse to jump into the conversation and suggest that classic rock is great, but try giving something more recent a fighting chance; the grunge era perhaps, or hip hop from ten years ago (pre-Jimmy-Fallon era Roots, Talib Kweli, Jurassic 5). I stayed silent, though.

As I listened, I realized that dentists have a different take, even on music, than the rest of us.

One of the dentists, it turn out, has a colleague in town who pokes around inside Bob Dylan's mouth.

"Oh, the stories," the first dentist said.


"Bob Dylan comes in wih his 'handler,' head down. He never looks you in the eye. Apparently he is completely unable to communicate on any kind of normal level."

"Really! huh," said the second dentist

I lost interest when they started talking about Bob Dylan's periodontal issues.

I wish I had not overheard the story.

On one level I am always aware that celebrities are real, living breathing people, with the same physical limitations as the rest of us, but somehow it feels slightly wrong to listen to, say, "Knocking on Heaven's Door," and suddenly become overwelmed with concern about the man's gums.

I suppose that's better than listening to the cover version by Guns And Roses, though.

Somehow I just assume Axel Rose's mouth is a disaster area.

Next up? I have to schedule an eye appointment. I don't have a regular eye Doctor in Los Angeles, so I'm free to try somewhere new.

Where will I likely hear stories about Johnny Depp? I just have a feeling that guy's as blind as a bat.

-Peter Wick
March 13, 2013