Even though I have not spoken to Obscure Object of Desire* in years (since his wife found out about our dalliance), we still share one thing in common: a dentist.
Ever since my "regular" dentist went off the rails about five years ago, giving me a shot of epinephrine that made me ill for two days, I haven't permanently settled on a new one. During the past two years I've occasionally journeyed to his recommended jawbreaker. Although their overwhelming cheerfulness annoys me, the hygienist has managed some cleanings that didn't make me want to scream.
My last visit to a newish dentist ended with a polite argument. The dentist was dying to sell me an implant to replace a broken crown, while I was happy to settle for a new crown. Since he had managed to destroy the old crown during the appointment, I've been wandering around with a painless but unsightly gap in my lower jaw.
Yesterday I decided I was tired of the gap, and that it was time to find a dentist who would replace the crown without attempting to bully me into a $4,000 implant I didn't yet want. I didn't want to waste the insurance. So I looked up OOD's dentist on Facebook so I could make an appointment.
I didn't expect to see him on the Facebook page, but OOD had been named Patient of the Day or something similar during the previous week and had been photographed with a grinning hygienist. Something about him was immediately, depressingly noticeable: he had put on some weight. Correction, a LOT of weight. Of course almost 100% of it was abdominal fat, which is where it goes if you're stressed or over 40, or both.
It was if he was wearing a sign that told the world that he was unhappy about a lot of things. If he wasn't so down, he would have never let himself go to this extent. I suppose his patched-up marriage is as miserable as most of them are, especially since both of them had harbored such unrealistic expectations about the relationship from the get-go. (That is, if it remained patched. I'm not going to ask.)
* See The Usual Suspects, which has been updated.