Well, that was easy

Pictured: not my tooth

The tooth extraction has basically turned out to be nothing worth talking about, honestly, which isn’t going to stop me from devoting an entire blog post to it.   The most complicated part was convincing the … nurse? not-the-dentist-but-not-clearly-a-hygienist?  Dental assistant?  I dunno, the lady who wasn’t the dentist– that while I appreciated the offer of sunglasses and would happily wear them during the procedure, the idea that the television in the room should be tuned to my needs (“Christ, no, not the news, anything but that”) or that the in-room bluetooth should be playing my own personal pullin’-teeth playlist was utterly unnecessary.  The TV doesn’t even have to be on, and if it’s going to be on my only condition is that it be either not turned to a channel that’s going to provoke rage or muted.  I really don’t need music.

She really had trouble with this idea.  Apparently it’s rare that patients for extractions don’t have media demands while going through the procedure.  Personally, I don’t get it.

Anyway, the nurse smeared my tongue and the area of the tooth with some sort of numbing gel and left me alone for a few minutes and then the dentist came in.  We talked about Hamilton for a few minutes and then he did … something inside my mouth for maybe a minute and said “Okay, all done!” and left.

I was surprised to learn that a tooth extraction takes less than a minute; I hadn’t felt a damned thing.  I expressed my surprise (“Holy shit, that’s it?”) and then discovered that, no, he hadn’t even touched the tooth, I’d just received three numbing shots to complement the numbing gel; the various non-dentists in the room were vastly entertained by my theory that the dentist declaring “all done” meant that “all” was “done” and that I could go home.

It was not, and I could not.

That said, the actual extraction took maybe five minutes.  He warned me beforehand that he suspected he might have to break the tooth to get it all out; as it was maybe 97% of it came right out and then he had to do a touch more fiddling around to get a tiny piece of root that stayed behind.  There was no pain whatsoever.  There wasn’t even any real sense of pressure or discomfort or even tugging.  If he hadn’t shown me the tooth I don’t know that I’d have believed he removed it, since I couldn’t feel anything inside my mouth– it was hours before I could actually feel the hole the tooth left behind with my tongue.  My appointment was at 10:00 and I was texting my wife that I was finished at 10:30.

Several hours of lazing about the house and occasionally switching out my gauze ensued; as of this moment the extraction was ten and a half hours ago and while it’s been a bit obnoxious I still can’t say that I’ve felt any actual pain at any point.  I ate ice cream and applesauce and had macaroni and cheese for dinner.  I’m going to take some painkillers before bed strictly as prophylaxis but I’m not sure I really need them.

So, yeah.  Kinda feel like an idiot that that had me more nervous than my gallbladder surgery did ten years ago.  I mean, shit still has time to go south if I lose the blood clot or something, but so far this has been cake.

RIP, my original head

KP8RD8qGonna go get a tooth torn out of my head tomorrow.  I’m not looking forward to any part of it, for obvious reasons, to the point where I’m actually kind of embarrassed at how much it’s weighing on me.  It’s a wisdom tooth.  Those shits get pulled all the time.  It’ll be fine, and I’ve got an excuse to spend the rest of the day in bed.  How often do I get to do that nowadays?  This is a good thing.

Stupidest thought of the last several days: that since I mostly chew on the right (which may not even be true) I’ll have to relearn how to eat.  I don’t think so.  I’m pretty certain that people who have single molars taken out aren’t generally in need of physical therapy afterwards.  I’m just being ridiculous.  I am also certain that once the swelling goes down, if indeed there’s enough swelling to be worth worrying about, that my face will neither be a different shape nor noticeably lopsided-looking.  They’re not removing my jaw.


Keeping with the “it annoys me that this annoys me” theme…

I dropped below 10,000 Twitter followers this week, for the first time in probably two years.  In itself, this isn’t a huge deal; followings ebb and flow and I don’t think I’ve ever had more than 10,300 or so, so it’s not a big drop at all.  It’s mildly annoying, because I like that five-figure following, but ultimately it’s a nothingburger.

Now, that said: I worked at getting that 10K following, and I had several strategies that I used that worked.  It took under a year to go from a few hundred followers to 10K.  And once I hit 10K every single one of those strategies stopped working, and nothing I’ve been able to do since then has been able to push me above that 10.3K number I referenced earlier.  Anybody reading this big into Twitter, and have any suggestions that don’t involve actually buying followers (never) or premium access to one of the various Twitter helper programs like Crowdfire?  I don’t want to spend any money on this, but time I have.

Anybody out there know more than me and want to share?

Had a woman come into the store today looking for occasional tables, and in talking to her about what she was looking for she volunteered that she recently bought a 1600 square foot house, filled it with new furniture, then sold it “on a whim” six months later to buy a 4400 square foot house.

Which she now needs to fill with more new furniture.

Is it wrong that I don’t know this woman at all and I still feel like her taxes probably ought to be doubled or tripled?


This is more a proof-of-life post than anything else; my wife is out of town for the next few days so I’m on solo Daddy duty, and today was a long and ridiculous day at work featuring virtually no sales of furniture in exchange for money but well more than a nine-hour allocation of nonsense.

And then I got home and had to clean up dog poop, which always improves one’s day, as you can no doubt well imagine.

The goal for tomorrow is to get through it without smacking anyone.  We’ll see how I do.

On Patreon


BEFORE WE GET STARTED: I’m taking a shot at Audible and audiobooks again at the moment; Skylights is currently open for auditions over there.  Are you an audiobook narrator?  Do you want to share revenue 50/50 with me on audio?  Go audition!

I got asked in comments a few days ago if I’d ever considered launching a Patreon.  And the answer is yeah, I have, and until really recently all such considerations were brief and unsystematic at best. I’ve been thinking about the idea a little harder lately and …

… well, I’m probably still not doing a Patreon, but I’m thinking about it a little bit harder.

Here’s the thing, right?  My books sell for crap.  It is true that there are a lot of other books out there that sell even worse than mine, but they sell for crap.  Balremesh and other stories and Tales: The Benevolence Archives, Vol. 3 have been out for months and probably haven’t sold fifty copies yet between the two of them.  A month with a half-dozen digital sales is a good month.  I do okay when I’m selling physical copies to people who are right in front of me, but the fact is the books aren’t moving online.

Well, okay, you say, but there are people who have bought all of those books and don’t have any more to buy right now.  Maybe they might like to have a way to support you in the meantime?

Well, okay.  First, being completely honest (none of this is to elicit sympathy,) I’m not convinced there are all that many of those people, and a lot of them are relatives, and a good chunk of those who aren’t are not, shall we say, Patreon’s typical demographic.

The other problem, of course, is what I can do for my Patrons, were I to actually acquire any.  To wit: in case it’s not clear, I write fiction sporadically at best, and I write slow.  I’m working on a short story right now for an open submissions window that is going to close for good in two weeks.  I have been working on that five thousand word story, a story that essentially sprung into my head fully written from the moment I had the idea, for something like six weeks.  I might get another 400-500 words of it written today.  I might not.  And I know which way I’d bet, were I betting.  It’s an open question as to whether I’ll get it done in time.  I have two more weeks for three thousand words more.

Most authors I’m aware of don’t use a monthly auto-pay model, they use a send me money when I create something and then you can have it sort of model.  But I sell entire books online for a damn dollar; are there people who will send me a dollar every time I send them a 5000 word short story?  Okay, what if it was a 500 word microfiction?  What if it was shorter than that?  How many of those might I be able to crank out in a month?

So, yeah, let’s try an experiment: Would you be willing to support me, at whatever minimal level you want, were I to create a Patreon?  What sorts of reward tiers might be interesting?

I mean, if I don’t get any comments here, before I’ve even created the thing, it sort of answers my question, right?

Don’t read this post

awful-clipartIt’s not a terribly common thought for me to have, but this is probably beneath you floated through my head as I was contemplating writing this post earlier.  Let it never be said that I have any standards for what I’m willing to whine about over here, guys.

To wit: I’m at the point where I’m seriously considering contacting my local radio station and begging them to move their stupid advice column segment to literally any other time than the fifteen minutes or so where I am driving my son to school and am thus guaranteed to be in the car five days a week.

Yes, I know I could listen to something else.  This particular local morning show is terrible.  It is the worst station in the universe, except for every other station I could be listening to, most of which are less “radio programs” and more “war crimes.”  Sometimes I don’t feel like screwing around with my phone because I’m in a hurry to get the boy to school and choosing something to listen to makes my brain hurt.  And therefore just about every weekday morning I’m exposed to a crowdsourced advice column, starring a question by the stupidest people on earth and responded to by people who think those people need their help.

This morning’s question was about whether the flu vaccine was “propaganda,” for example.  Earlier in the week someone wanted to know if she was terrible for asking half of her bridesmaids to lose weight before she allowed them to be in her wedding.  These are always questions that a sixth-grader with a modicum of emotional intelligence should be able to answer easily, only apparently there are no sixth-graders with a modicum of emotional intelligence listening to the radio in the morning.  It is terrible and it ensures that I begin every single day by questioning the worth of civilization in general and American civilization (my opinion of which is lowering on a daily basis anyway) in particular.  I need them to stop and I need them to air their dumb program at any other time, or at least restrict the advice-giving to the hosts and not the howling apes who are calling in.

Also, I need to start an advice column, most of which will consist of me telling people that they are morons who should have solved their own simple-ass problems before writing to me.