Displaced Stay At Home Californian in rural N. Carolina

The Many Faces of Joy

The Many Faces of Joy

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Strip Mall Dentistry

So I had to break down and go to the strip mall dentist because we are cancelling our dental insurance and we needed to all get our teeth cleaned and checked up before our plan is gone. Lets just say by way of explanation that the cost of my husband's insurance has gone up so much that only a single resident can afford a comprehensive health care package. I am working on not being bitter about this and thankful that he only has 6 more months left.

Anyway, I hate this place, I hate it so much. The Spanish speaking dental assistants and dental hygienists stand outside the examination rooms and chat each other up one side and down the other in Spanish. They do not seem to take much care about their subject material, they talk about the people sitting in the examination chairs and joke around and since the majority of the people who go there are either Indian or Asian, I guess they feel comfortable in the anonymity of the Spanish Language. I never thought that I would live in California and say that but I had never lived in Silicon Valley before.

Secondly, the dental hygienist is a Hun. Somewhere, sometime, in a past life, she was tortured by Pol Pot and his friends or she was chased and beaten up by gang members or maybe she had to hide from dinosaurs to avoid extinction, whatever the case, she is rough and scary. She looks like someone's grandmother but she is mean with a silver picky thing in hand. The last time I was there, she cut my lip with that silver thing and the time before she cut my gum so badly with this metal temporary crown that I thought I was going to actually cry.

Let me back and and just tell my faithful readers (yes, I have faithful readers now) that I am no stranger to dentistry. Being a recipient of military benefits as a child, I vividly remember sitting outside of dental offices and waiting my turn like the VA guys around me to get my teeth cleaned. I remember once asking for a fluoride treatment to be made longer and having only the top tray done by itsself so I didn't vomit or gag for 5 or 7 or 20 minutes or however long they tortured children back in the 70's but I was denied and when I started to gag repeatedly (as any 7 year old would) the dentist snapped, "Now you cut that out!". So I am not a wuss or a softie and I have never had a dental procedure that made me wince or cry out - I sit my ground!

Today was the final straw when we took our oldest to her appointment only to be told that her appointment was 2 hours later. When I produced the card with her name and the time on it, I was met with a blank stare. Then they gave her a procedure we had not signed on for and they asked me to pay for it as I was leaving. I asked my husband if he had approved this procedure and he said he did not. I told the receptionist that I had not authorized this procedure and she said that they had done it anyway. I told her that I was told that no services would be done without consent from the parents. She said they wouldn't charge us and we left.

I am glad today was my last trip to this dental office. I don't feel badly for the dentist, after all I never saw the same one when I was there, I think there have been 3 new dentists replacing old ones in the 3 years we've been living here. I only wish that I had not been limited to this dental office and dental staff - and I'll be checking my statement when it comes because something tells me that while they said they would not charge me, they most likely will anyway.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


I'm not really sure what is going on with shoes lately but I seem to have fallen into a void complete with ugly shoes. First of all, whenever I try to check my updates on Facebook or sift through my spam folder on Hotmail, I find that I am getting ads targeted to women with hideous taste in shoes. Secondly there is something really ugly and terrifying going on with these rounded bottom track or running shoes. You can't go into a store and look at tennis shoes without being bombarded by these horrible rounded bottom shoes and to create even more misery, the gimmick is that they make your buns tighter or something like that. Personally I can't see my buns so I don't really care what they look like. I can also tell you that I could care less if anyone else stares at my buns and the only people who seem enthralled by them are my children so I try to keep them well covered at all times.

Remember when Crocs hit the scene? Remember how there was that one dufus that bought the red or orange pair and wore them to his Christmas party because they were so comfy? I think Crocs should be limited to the garden or the backyard - just like Dansko's should be limited to the doctor's office or the restaurant kitchen. Now they have these shoes that cost a fortune that have all the toes separated and that look like mutated or webbed feet. The really really ugly shoes always cost a fortune!

I still like fancy, cute, high heeled or flat shoes. But for some reason everyone is telling me that I should be sensible and practical and buy the ones that won't hurt my back or legs or that won't trip me up running after children. Trust me, my back hurts whether or not I wear sensible or practical shoes.

So Happy Christmas everyone and wear something cute on your feet to celebrate.

Sunday, December 5, 2010


I made this wreath today from a $2 dollar wreath I found at Goodwill and some balls of yarn I had stashed away for when friends come over and say, "Gee I wish you would teach me how to knit, I have been dying to learn" which in reality has only happened once and it was the 8 year old neighbor and I am pretty sure she hasn't picked it back up since she made off with a decent pair of size 8 needles and some ratty yellow yarn. And to give credit where credit is due, I didn't come up with the idea on my own, I saw it on someone else's blog and thought it was so cute but I wasn't willing to buy the wreath because it isn't in my budget to buy greenery that will eventually dry out and that I will throw in the garbage. If you can't eat it, use it or clean something up with it, I don't waste money on it.

This is the season of waste, irritation, inadequacy and guilt for me. I feel irritated at how commercial everything is, how wasteful people are, how we buy and buy and buy when we don't need the things we are buying or giving and then how those items end up broken, torn, destroyed or discarded very quickly and we move on to something else. I also dislike the way we teach our children how to ask for 1 or 2 or 50 gifts as if that will bring peace to the Middle East, cure AIDS, give same sex couples the right to marry whomever they love or get the Korean neighbors to stop abusing their kids.

I feel inadequate because I don't have lots of money to buy whatever my children want or most especially an American Girl Doll even if they never touch it again in their life. I feel guilt because even though I have to settle with someone else's hand-me-down toys or look at places like the Goodwill or Salvation Army, there is someone else with so much less or even nothing at all and I realize I have so much.

That having been said, I want a pair of Ugg boots size 8, color brown. I have been wanting a pair for 7 years, maybe this is the Christmas I'll get them.