Friday, November 30, 2012

The Sonicare saga

I repeat. Bad idea.
Though denied of Twinkies, my date and I did not leave the Hood River, Ore., WalMart empty-handed last week.

We left with a Sonicare toothbrush. Do we know how to have A Good Time, or what?

The acquisition was inspired by a recent  trip to the dental hygienist.

"People Your Age," she opined with the gravitas of a Star Chamber judge, "should really use one of these." And then, for emphasis, she waved the contraption under my nose like a concert baton.

Whoa, whoa, whoa. Back up there for a minute, little missy. Did you just say People MY age?

Yes, yes, I know I am a mere 30 days away from entering The Sixth Decade, but is it written somewhere that people dangling precariously on the precipice of 60 suddenly lose their ability to grip a toothbrush and execute a vigorous up-and-down motion across the pearly whites for 3 or 4 minutes twice a day?

I didn't think so.

Instead, the hygienist nattered on about something involving changes in gum tissue, tooth enamel, New York Fashion Week and this year's wheat harvest in Waterville, Wash., and how Sonicare is so much easier on all of the above. Blah, blah, blah.

People Your Age. What. Ever. I sniffed my way out of the dentist's office and felt justifiably indignant until my date came home from his teeth cleaning a week or so later a broken man. (Not really. I say this purely for literary effect. But he was none too pleased with his hygienist. I believe the term "excessive force" was used.)

"We should get the Sonicare. It reduces plaque build-up."


Yes, that is a lot of turquoise. The Nine-One-Four
was built in 1940, when turquoise was considered a fifth food group.
So now we have the little beastie enthroned in the upstairs bathroom along with his-and-her brush heads. We have embraced it, and it is ours. People Our Age can adapt. And gracefully, I might add.

There is, however, a serious learning curve to using the dang thing:

1. The owner's manual: It warns, "DO NOT place or store the product where it can fall or be pulled into a tub or sink." This seems to run a little counterintuitive to a hygiene instrument typically used over the bathroom sink. I guess we'll be Sonicare-ing in the driveway this winter, it being nearly impossible to fall or be pulled into a tub or sink there.

Hi, neighbors!

2. Getting started: Applying the toothpaste to the brush is no problem. Easy, peasy. But how and where to start is another kettle of fish. You obviously want to have the brush pointed at some collection of teeth, but still need to see where the Start button is. As result, there's a little dance in front of the bathroom mirror as you tilt and bow, Sonicare firmly poised for action against your upper canines, searching for the the Go button.

It's a little like hooking a fish.


3. Once the Sonicare is buzzing along doing its Sonicare business, there's the small matter of trying to avoid hitting the stem of the brush with you teeth. This is more difficult than it sounds, trust me.

And when you make contact with the stem, you are rewarded with an explosive series of Peter Frampton guitar rifts, except without Peter Frampton, going off in your head. They remain with you for a good part of the morning so, hopefully, you are a Peter Frampton fan.

4. And finally spray-age: Let's just say, we are not brushing teeth in our work clothes any more. Not until we learn to control the Sonicare tsunami that seems to erupt at the conclusion of each brushing session.

And we will.

Because that's What People Our Age always do.

P.S. I love personal hygiene products that use the word "Kill."

Peace out.


  1. Oi old lady! Who knew it'd be possible to write such an entertaining piece on brushing teeth? I'm glad the baby posing as your dental hygienist goaded you into doing it because you just gave me my first big laugh of this Saturday morning.

    Any bash planned for the big six oh? X

    1. It's looking pretty bash-free right now, but I might stay up till 10 p.m. just to show folks I still have it in me.

  2. I feel your pain -- my eyes are always closed now to avoid the shaken lady syndrome and subsequent motion sickness.