Having endured three emergency dentist appointments, two sets of x-rays, and the ominous suggestion that something “just doesn’t look right” in my right maxillary cavity, I decided on Thursday night that the most reasonable course of action was to get very, very drunk. Coincidentally, James had just emerged from a brief period of scholarly seclusion, so I instructed him to meet me at the Café post haste. As it turned out, James had his own reasons for wanting to get very, very drunk, and by closing time that is precisely what we were.
When I awoke the next afternoon, and for the first time in four days, I was not in pain. Although not gone, the abscess had decreased significantly in size, as had the extent of the swelling that accompanied it. To my mind, this called for immediate celebration, and more drinking, which transpired at a fair to middling party hosted by two graduate students in English. The high point of the evening occurred when, in an effort to mingle, I ventured into one of the apartment’s two bedrooms and rudely interrupted a reading of W.H. Auden’s poems. Feeling shamefully uncultured, I quickly excused myself and retreated to the kitchen, where I kept company with the other philistines in attendance.
Today, I started taking my prescribed course of antibiotics and am hoping for the best, which in this case may well be a root canal.