My DDS wants to be a S-T-A-R.
I came to this conclusion last week after googling him to get his phone number* and discovering that he now has a website. A shiny, slick, superstar dentist website that cheerily bellows "Hola, TLC!" and "E! Here I am!"
The site's main page boasts a professionally lit photo of my ole DDS -- let's call him Dr. Donaldson -- perched in a director's chair beside a photograph of the Hollywood sign and the words fine dentistry with a view. I love how right away it's established that he is not a regular dentist, but rather a Hollywood Dentist. Already he seems a little more glamorous, a little more alluring than a plain civilian dentist, yes? Also he refers to his office not as an office, but as a premier dental spa. This je love. I mean, I've been there and the place is perfectly fine and clean and everything, but I wouldn't go so far as to call it a dental spa -- whatever that is. It's just a standard dentist's office with air smelling vaguely of latex and mint, soft rock from KOST 103.5 piping in, the disconcertingly MOIST sound of that saliva-vacuum thingy ...
But perhaps the best part of this intro is where it goes, "In a community where image matters (bold font his), Dr. Donaldson specializes in treating high-profile patients (bold font AND italics, his) in the kind of opulent setting that most people can only imagine in their dreams." First of all, the idea that anything at ALL dental-related would qualify as something I can only imagine in my dreams is, at best, wildly optimistic about the role of dentistry in our lives. But what strikes me most about this bit is the implication that Dr. Donaldson is a good dentist because he treats high-profile patients. That is, famous people can feel comfortable with him because he is good enough for them, and regular people should feel compelled to use him because his celebrity-adjacent status means he is somehow extraordinary at his job. Of course, this way-out-of-whack celebrity worship/endorsement stuff goes on constantly -- particularly here in L.A., it seems -- but, still, it somehow always manages to flummox me. Like just a few weeks ago, I was on the phone with a moving company we were considering hiring and the gal was listing the reasons we should use them -- and among these reasons was that they have moved Angelina Jolie as well as the set of the Tyra Banks Show. When she said that, I didn't know how to respond. "Wow," I remember saying. "That is so cool."
I think that is what one is supposed to say?
But back to Dr. Donaldson ("or Dr. D., as he prefers to be called") and his pitch -- um, I mean website. Reading on, I learn that he is much more than just a dentist; he is actually a multifaceted human being, and -- of course -- an entertainer. He has been happily married since 1988, has two children, and plays the guitar. "A professional musician before he became a dentist, Dr. D. writes music and is in the process of recording an album at this time (italics mine!)." Recording an album! Stop it! Someone give this man a show!
But seriously folks. I will be keeping my eyes out for Dr. D. on the small screen. And frankly, I won't be surprised if I see him there one day kind of soon. Perhaps he will even be sporting scrubs (like my favorite TV doctor, Mehmet Oz, MD!) while heading up a show of his very own about making peoples' dreams come true via the wonders of dentistry. Why not. I do sort of hope such a turn of events transpires. Because, after all, as his longtime, retainer-loving patient -- I think I would actually feel a little bit proud.
* I wear a retainer. I don't have a problem admitting that. I really adore this retainer of mine. It's just for use while sleeping but I don't even wear it every night -- just the nights my husband is out or otherwise distracted, because as much as I love the retainer, it's not worth the grief he gives me over it. I understand that a lot of people might think a grown woman in a retainer is pathetic or even disgusting. I think it's terrific. As I see it, my parents paid good money for my braces and I spent a significant amount of time looking like a metal-mouthed jackass; I'm not interested in wasting their money or my years of ugliness. Plus, teeth move over time, and I don't want to end up some snaggletoothed, underbit person. I want a mouth full of snazzy white Chiclets. Hence the retainer. But unfortunately, last week I exercised poor judgment and decided to boil it. I was going through one of my compulsive cleaning/sterilizing binges and I thought it would be smart to boil my retainer in a big pot along with some baby bottles. Then I left the retainer in the boiling water for a pretty long time, which, in retrospect, was a bad move, seeing as how now the thing is semi-melted and unusable. So this is why I had to call Dr. Donaldson. To fix my retainer.
|Meredith Hoffa's first-person writing has appeared in The New York Times, Boston Globe Magazine, Fit Pregnancy, Business Traveler, and the new anthology, "Rejected" (Villard/Random House, 2009). She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and daughter.|