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I'm flossed

     Held captive by a piece of floss. A long piece of floss hanging out the front of my mouth and behind my front tooth. I had been remiss in the flossing business lately. My teeth weren't giving me any trouble, but a recent trip to the dentist got me re-thinking about this flossing business.

     As it happened, a chunk of what I thought was a chip off my bottom front tooth popped out as I was snacking. Oh, no. Another cap! I'm going to need another tooth capped. That is not something I enjoy.

     At this point, I was long overdue for a cleaning so I made an appointment and took the chip with me to the dentist the next day. Turned out it was plaque, not a tooth chip. What a relief! "Yay!" I couldn't help hollering. The dentist looked a little surprised but in my defense, no one likes having a tooth capped and I was otherwise good in the teeth. Figuring I wanted to keep my good-teeth status, I decided to go back to flossing. No more excuses.

     Hmmm. Not so bad. For three days all went well. On the fourth day the floss got stuck. You know how it's s'posed to go back and forth, down and up and out. . . It stopped on the "up." No "out." Stuck between two bottom teeth. I pulled. My hand slipped off the floss. Floss is stubborn, but so am I and I wasn't about to go out in public with thread hanging out of my mouth. I kept pulling. I pulled up. I pulled out. I pulled hard. Ah! It's coming out!

     Part of it. My tugging had stripped the floss down to its core, a slim thread that stayed right there but I got the floss out that day after a major struggle.

     A week later the floss got stuck again. This time it was stuck between two of my upper front teeth. Not the best place to have a thread hanging from. I couldn't hide at home—I had a haircut appointment that afternoon. After the last time, I was afraid to pull too hard and strip the floss to its core again, but I tugged anyway.

     The floss didn't budge. I got the scissors and cut it off as close to the teeth as I dared. That was in the front. I couldn't get to the back of the teeth, so the floss hung out back there. The floss behind my tooth kept poking itself out to the front and I kept pushing it back with my tongue.

     Last night I was sitting by the fireplace reading and eating See's peanut brittle. I had eaten an apple earlier, hoping that would dislodge the floss but it didn't. Hate to say, I was almost getting used to floss in my mouth by now. Something for my tongue to do. As I savored the honeyed crunch of the peanut brittle, something fell onto my tongue. What's that?

     Oh! A piece of dental floss! Really??? Yep! I checked my teeth—no more floss there. Needing someone to celebrate with, I texted the friend I'd told about the stuck floss earlier that day. "I got it out!" 

     It occurred to me she might have no idea what in the world I was talking about. I doubt she was worrying about my floss-inhabited mouth all day. I texted again. "The floss. I got the floss out."

     This morning I bought a pack of floss picks—those miniature wish-bone shaped pieces of plastic with a floss thread you see lying around on the ground in parking lots everywhere. Will it prevent more stuck-in-the-teeth floss attacks? I'm hoping…

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