Yesterday was a friend’s going away party at work. We had lunch at Uncle Julio’s, a local Mexican restaurant. I was munching away on a basket of chips when I thought I bit on a course piece of cornmeal. It wasn’t cornmeal. It was my tooth. Crushed that sucker to bits. All that remains is the remnants of a filling and part of the back tooth.
I nearly went insane. Not because of the pain, mind you. I was going nuts because I could not stop licking the jagged stump of my tooth. I was NOT in pain. But I could not stop myself. My tongue almost went raw from probing the broken tooth. The only way I could stop myself was to buy “tooth spackle” to fill the hole.
That is when it hit me. I was causing my own hell. I had a mouth full of perfectly healthy teeth. Nothing was protruding. My tongue could lay flat in my mouth with no ill effect. But I had to focus on the one tooth that was not working properly until I made myself miserable.
Religion is my tooth. I have so many things in my life that go off without a hitch. I live a blessed existence. According to Forbes magazine, I live in the second most affluent county in the country. I am married and have a brilliant son. I have health insurance. I have a secure job. But what do I focus on? How my religious upbringing wrecked my life.
Wrecked really??? Hmmm…
And You May Find Yourself Living In A Shotgun Shack
And You May Find Yourself In Another Part Of The World
And You May Find Yourself Behind The Wheel Of A Large Automobile
And You May Find Yourself In A Beautiful House, With A Beautiful wife
And You May Ask Yourself-Well…How Did I Get Here?
–Talking Heads, 1984
I live in heaven and I obsess about going to hell in the afterlife. Note to self: It’s not about you! Get over it. There are real people in real hell right now. Do something about it.
I think I am a little too focused on my broken tooth.