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Dentist's office
Brush your teeth, or else Michael Bolton will kill you


May 26, 2005

When a maaaaaaaaaan, loves a woman ... Fluorescent lights glare down and constrict my pupils, although it feels like they are dilating. Michael Bolton is killing me and there's nothing I can do about it. He's screaming ... Can't keep his mind on nothin' ellllllllllse ... This must be the longest song I've ever heard in my life. He should have named it "The Long Song". (Now that you mentioned it... when does a man love a woman, Michael?)

I take comfort in this music that is so unapologetically bad. I know my turn will come. If and when I become a doctor, in my office I'll be free to play music from whatever decade I choose, and you can bet I'll play some shit that would make little kids cry, even harder than when I walk into the room with a massive needle full of antibiotics.

My eyes hurt. My mouth is dry. And there are two heads looking down the gaping hole in my mouth, staring with intent, yet familiar and calm concentration, picking at me with intimacy. I can't help feeling that these two, who are whiter and friendlier than me, are my parents. Who on Earth could handle a close personal situation as hilarious as this with a straight face?

I keep praying... Please God, don't make me laugh. If I did I'd probably get impaled by one of these devices currently operating in my mouth. Hey, the top part is soft, and I'm pretty sure it leads straight to the brain. Relax, dude. The corners of my mouth keep turning up, and I have to think of horrible things like drive-by shootings, the Bush Administration, and Michael Jackson's face to bring them back down. How did I get here?

I think of all the late night chicken finger sandwiches and six-packs of beer, the taste of smoke, booze, salt, and grease on my tongue. There was a battle raging inside my mouth: cells armed with knives, pitchforks, and thick leather belts being overwhelmed by broken-down sugars doing reconnaissance across my tongue in Apache gunships and Chinook helicopters, while pieces of hot wing (stuck between my teeth) bombed the foundations of my teeth and lobbed bad-breath grenades around. Madness.

I took that mouth and fell into my bed, with an annoying ten-year-old kid's sense of pride about not brushing my teeth. Why? Cuz I didn't have to. What an idiot. Well, those days are over. If I don't start taking care of my teeth, Michael Bolton will come and kick my ass all over again.

For letters section
Maziar Shirazi

Maziar Shirazi


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The Persian Garden
Echoes of Paradise
By Mehdi Khansari, M. Reza Moghtader, Minouch Yavari

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