For When Your Mouth is On Fire–

I remember it like it was yesterday, as one often does having experienced an insane amount of trauma.

I was sitting in a french-ish restaurant with my Slam Piece–or SP–(some would call him a “boyfriend” but I’m nearing 30 and he’s over the hill, so that seems like a rather juvenile title to give him. Because Slam Piece isn’t juvenile at all).

Brunch was on the menu and I was excited to eat my bacon and cheese croissant sandwich.

While waiting, I attempted to bite into a small section of the miniature french baguette they give everyone when you sit down. FREE BREAD is my favorite kind of bread.

Except–

A pain the likes of which I have never felt before shot through my gum, sliced through my brain, and gave me temporary blindness.

I’m not kidding or exaggerating, I was in tears seconds later and SP was looking at me like I had somehow, and very suddenly, lost my mind. The minute before I had been chatting happily with him, and the next minute, rivers of tears were pouring down my face like the Hoover Dam had gone and busted straight open.

Scared that the nice waiter who asked me if everything was alright would think that SP was an abusive spouse, I quickly told him that I had immense tooth pain and that I would be needing a box for my breakfast.

It was then that I panicked because not only did I not have a regular dentist/dental insurance/ or much of a chance of seeing one on a Saturday, I also have a very deep seated phobia of any and all dental work.

I can’t even get a simple cleaning without losing my shit, so you can imagine my distress at thinking that my wisdom teeth (that had been sneakily growing in for years) were the possible culprits in this situation.

OH, and I was unemployed at the time on top of having no insurance so DOUBLE WHAMMY.

SP knew that I wasn’t in my right mind when I suggested that I would just ignore it. He knew about all of the concerns swirling around in my pain addled brain without me having even given voice to them. Not only did he make my appointment for me at his dentist (who was open on Saturdays, luckily), but he also made the very generous offer to pay for it for me. He offered with such sincerity that my ice cold heart grew three sizes that day, a lá The Grinch.

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You’re a mean one–

Being stubborn and self-sufficient, I would never allow him to do it. I had some savings that could take care of it, and so I agreed to burn through some of that in order to get my mouth under control.

I saw SP’s dentist who informed me that she thought my wisdom teeth needed to come out but couldn’t schedule me for that day. So I set my sights to the internet for a dentist that could help me immediately. I had tried to nap right after the appointment, but the pain was so acute, so shooting, so stinging and fierce that I literally darted up in bed every time I moved my mouth.

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WISDOM TEETH!

I finally found a dentist that was able to help and set up an appointment for the coming Monday when they would wrench out my teeth.

I got to the office and the dentist, who resembled someone’s sweetest grandpa, gave me some free X-rays and informed me that it wasn’t my wisdom teeth causing such pain. It was molar on the right side of my mouth that had a fracture in it and had become infected.

No tooth extraction needed, but a root canal was inevitable.

A root canal.

One of the most painful dental procedures that a person can get. One that would require the actual surgery, a temporary crown fitting, and finally a permanent crown application. A procedure that would take two different appointments on two separate days.

I had no choice, though, it was take care of it or have my mouth continuously infected.

So I bit the bullet.

And trust me, it felt like biting a bullet and then having it explode in my gum line.

The dentist wasn’t going to do the procedure, a specialist was. I can’t remember his name because I can remember very little other than an immense amount of pain from that day.

He walked into the little cubicle I was sitting in and I immediately started crying. Not just crying–blubbering. I could hardly catch my breath and I couldn’t see him through the wells of tears in my eyes. He patted my shoulder gently and said soothing words that I thought one would use with a dog being put to permanent rest on the vet’s table.

Which made me freak out even more.

I explained through gasps and hiccups that I had an extreme phobia of the dentist and hadn’t been in years, since I was old enough to vehemently refuse to set foot in an office.

He said that he was going to talk me through the entire procedure, make sure that I was good and numb, and would be constantly listening out for me to tell him if I was feeling any pain.

So sweet.

So WRONG.

I won’t be sharing every sordid detail of what went on for the next 40 minutes. Doing so would ensure a flare up of PTSD. There were more tears, there was more pain–unimaginable pain (thanks for not working novocaine!)–sniffling, snot, and a sweet dental assistant that petted my head, wiped my tears, and assisted the dentist simultaneously. MAD SKILLS.

I wandered over to get my temporary crown and almost passed out when I saw flecks of my blood on THAT dentist’s face visor.

There was more pain.

More tears.

And another great hygienist pulling me back from The Light.

A few months out and I’m still terrified to return to get the cavities that I have filled. I know with each passing moment, those hole-y teeth only get worse.

On a related note–does anyone know a good brand of denture glue? Because I’m considering pulling all of these out and just getting the fake ones. SP will think that’s real sexy.

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Babies First Drug Deal

I’ve had horrible luck with neighbors for the last 3.5 years that I’ve lived in this building (and in LA, for that matter). I regaled you with the tale of my Midnight Piano Playing Casanova, but I didn’t tell you about the two other nightmares I’ve lived through. Stay tuned.

My current neighbors, the ones with whom I share a bedroom wall, are just generally loud. It used to be house music at 3am, loud parties, and the like–but then they got a stern talking-to from my building manager and gave me their number to call them directly. Now I just can’t get them to shut the eff up between the hours of midnight and 3:30am when they finally stuff a sock in it and go to sleep. I’ve complained to the building manager AGAIN but I have very little faith that things will change.

So, out of sheer sleep deprivation and a drive to get some peace and quiet, I turned to the ever-popular, ever-ridiculed “Craigslist” to check out some possible new digs.

You guys.

Bad idea.

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While apartment searching on “the List”, you’ve got to contend with crazies, false advertising, money and sex trafficking scams, and photos that somehow make the apartment look ten times bigger than the little sardine can that you inevitably encounter when you visit in person.

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I found an apartment that was advertised to be in the general price range I was looking for and in one of my most coveted neighborhoods LA has to offer: Larchmont.

It is one of the absolute cutest neighborhoods you ever did see, surprisingly adjacent to Hollywood (for how expensive and classy Larchmont is). Just look:

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See the cuteness:

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I drove by these streets and smiled.

And then kept following the GPS and lost a little of the smile as I turned the corner off of this idyllic street.

And then my smile was completely wiped from my face when I realized that my ETA was a clear 5 minutes longer to the East.

And a frown fully formed on my face when I realized I was headed into Koreatown.

Now, let me be clear that I know about 7 friends that live/have lived in K-town–of those 7 friends, only 2 have had positive experiences living there. One even witnessed a stabbing across the street from her apartment.

But I had made the appointment, and I was going to see it through.

“How bad could it be?”

Hahahahahahaha, oh Short and Feisty, you should know better than to ask that question.

I pulled up to the complex and parked behind a grey Toyota that was made circa 1990, a hispanic middle aged gentleman sitting in the front seat. I was about 15 minutes early, as I am perpetually early for everything, and didn’t mind sitting in my car waiting for the property manager to arrive.

5 minutes pass and no movement from my parking buddy. I wonder if he’s waiting to see the same unit that I am waiting to view. He can have it.

Two other younger hispanic dudes approach the car from an easterly direction.

One stands by the passenger side window and leans partially in–he’s got a crumpled, aged, McDonald’s bag in one hand and starts having an animated conversation with the driver (in Spanish).

“No big deal,” you might say, “maybe he’s just delivering days-old McDonald’s to his friend!”

I would agree had the second younger dude not stepped back from the car–right hand inside of his jacket pocket (it’s hot out, I know that hand isn’t cold), the other hand on his cell phone–

and–

–I kid you not–

he moves his head right to left, backwards and forwards, constantly monitoring and taking in the immediate surroundings.

I have seen enough “Lock Ups”, “Ganglands”, and “Cops” to know exactly what’s going on.

It was then that I put my car in drive and blew that pop stand. Sure, it could’ve been something much more innocent, but I wasn’t taking any chances.

I circled around to the opposite side of the block until it was time for me to see the apartment, went back on the dot when I saw that the two other guys had left, but noticed that Toyota man was still there.

The apartment manager didn’t even show up (the butthole), but called to give me over the phone instructions. Maybe it’s a sign when the property manager doesn’t even want to be in that neighborhood in broad daylight.

You’re running late, Ms. Property Manager? Suuuuuuuuure.

I dashed inside to see the building with over the phone instructions, took a quick look around at the tiny apartment with 1950’s stove (no, like legit stove out of the 1950’s) and kicked rocks!

All in all, I would say this is about as good as a first drug deal witnessing can go considering there were no gunshots or drug busts, so two thumbs up, Los Angeles!

 

Here.

4 months!?

Has it really been 4 months since I sat down to type something on this thing?

I guess it has–and it’s no coincidence that that long drought of words coincided with my bout of full-time unemployment.

One would THINK that with all of the time afforded by not having steady work, one would be able to crank out some impressive prose.

Alas, I have found that when one is stressed about such trivialities as rent money and scraping enough together to resist the ever present threat of car repossession, one’s brain isn’t quite ready to dive into writing the Next Great American Novel/Screenplay.

So what’s happened during what I am now dubbing “The Great Silent Period”? Here are some bullet points I’ll hopefully get to over the next few weeks.

  • I found a nanny job–my “unicorn nanny job”, in fact. I won’t be going into detail about the kids or family, but it’s a nanny job with a 48 hour shift starting at 9am on Saturday and ending at 9am on Monday. This schedule is AMAZING for writing and auditioning and I’m already setting myself up to take full advantage of it.
  • I got my first root canal. It was as horrific as you would expect it to be, can’t wait to share the details with you.
  • I took some beginner magic lessons at The Magic Castle and it was awesome.
  • I went to SUNDANCE 2016! It was all sorts of amazing and awesome and I can’t wait to share my experiences with you here.
  • I survived the last few months panic attack free, which is probably the most significant feat of all. I had plenty of opportunity to completely lose my marbles, but I held it together through the grace of mid-day napping and Netflix.
  • I witnessed my first drug deal while apartment hunting.
  • I went in for a nanny interview with a celeb and came out with a PT writer’s assistant position. There won’t be a ton of detail on this one, either, but I will regale you with the tale of our serendipitous meeting because it’s honestly something out of a movie.
  • I finally got the wherewithal to sit my butt down and update this blog. So get ready for some wild stories.

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