Saturday, October 27, 2007
Dentrifice and the Knight of the Red Crosse
Dream: of being at the dentist, having just rolled out of bed with morning zaggly-mouth. As I am exchanging pleasantries with the hygienist, I duck into the next room and find a gumball machine, into which I insert a dime, twist the ratchet. Another is beside it, one filled with those strange-tasting "hot-dog" gumballs I remember in the Nebraska Hinky Dinky as a kid. My slight regret that I didn't opt for those--they were mintier and would have done the job better. The gumballs rattle down into the hopper. I lift the flap, pop several gumballs in my mouth and chew, hoping to clear my breath a bit before I have to sit down in the chair. I turn to acknowledge what the hygenist is saying. Behind me, the gumballs continue to fall into the chute--I am a winner evidently and the gumballs currency in some feeble slot machine. I wonder why a dentist office would have sugar-based gum in their machines. I chew and chew. Evidently I'm grinding my teeth more than usual in my sleep lately.
Under three blankets was cold all night and so now, on this starkly bleak day, I am sitting in the warmest room in the house with the furnace on, with tea steeping, and wearing flannel. Spenserian stanzaic scansion be on the docket for today, along with the penning of a stanza in some manner of pale imitation, which I will discuss and display in class for Monday, a lovely excuse to pull my Penguin edition of Faerie Queene from the bookshelf--the credit card slip is still inside--evidently I purchased the book on January 6th of 1991 from Von's. I would have been a sophomore then, With a Discover card, the application for which was no doubt filled out in the Memorial Mall so I could have a free 2-liter bottle of Coke or a free highlighter. The acidic newsprint pages have been yellowing like ivory on my shelf ever since. For some reason I have my transcript right here--I'm assuming I bought the book for my English 240 class: English Lit through the 18th Century. I never read the excerpts no doubt assigned for class, which would explain my lackluster grade of C.
Photo of Jewish Holocaust Museum, Berlin