The most effect method for ‘casting-out’ a demon is by tooth extraction. A priest is not needed when tooth-for-a-tooth transactions between God and man occur, only a good dentist. Surely demons are real. Civilized society denounces the notion of demonic possession and for the sake of argument, often refers to the phenomena as ‘mental illness’. When suffering from aches in a tooth that has crumbled more than the ancient Jewish temple, it is best to forgo the cost of a root canal and simply have the rotted piece of bone pulled out, like a demon trapped inside the head of deranged man.
Modern philosophers rarely take note that in ancient religious literature, the dentist Jesus, when not preaching and giving sight to the blind, was casting out demons. Today, as easily as one obtains 20-20 vision with the assistance of glass or contact lenses, the mentally ill, as far as most are concerned, have demons cast from them with mind-altering drugs. Unfortunately, there is no pill to cast out demons nor is there over-the-counter medication for a severe tooth ache. One must resort to exorcism, or as is the case when one does not have a job or insurance, an extraction for the redemption of sweet sins.
Toothache pain is as severe major depression. Psychologically tortured individuals, when suffering from intrusive thoughts or hallucinations, blame the bombardment of random thoughts to an external factor, such as demons. Tooth pain is far from enlightening. Twisted minds often conclude that mind-controlling, highly technical implants have been placed inside fillings and under crowns in their mouth. Ask any mental health professional who has worked in a psychiatric ward—almost every crazy person imagines there are thought-control devices in their teeth. These shared fears and delusions of dental work are uncanny and are the root cause for teeth in my mouth to be falling out or in need of exorcism. I spent years grinding down my teeth following my hospitalization for imagining there were through-control devices in my head.
When a toothache strikes the mouth of one who once suffered from the shared psychotic delusion of many– that of Thought Control Technology (TCT), reaching out to a dentist can be as terrifying as trusting a psychiatrist with the freedom to force-prescribe anyone dropped into their care, with any paralyzing medication deemed necessary for fighting the devil.
There are saints who walk the earth in the year 2011; there is good one in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn who has a church called “Ryerson Smiles”. Those who fear demons and dental implants and those who instill them should not fear walking in the valley of the shadow of death when one’s mouth suddenly becomes possessed with legions of throbbing nerves. There are those who see beyond crucifixes for the purpose of extracting demons. There are dentists, godly black women, scientist with God close to their hearts, workers of modern Jesus miracles who perform tooth extractions on weekends, after hours, just when the staff of a tiny, Brooklyn office were about to be sent home for a three-day, Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday weekend. The miracle does not cost an arm and a leg!
A tooth in my mouth had a filling on the side. Dentists– probably the ones who instilled thought-control devices in the first place– have told me for decades that the tooth needed a crown. Too cheap, without insurance, and remembering the crown that Jesus wore, the side-filling stayed in place for decades although it had been replaced numerous times over the near half-century for which it has existed. Just as the Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend began here in
Brooklyn, a piece of my most cherished thought-control device broke off while I was eating one of three cheeseburgers from McDonald’s.
Saturday night, the demon of tooth pain kept me awake all night. I laughed, remembering the time I had ‘gone-psychotic’, but the laugh quickly vanished and I started to cry. I imagined, on the day I had gone psychotic, that there were little chips inside my teeth. Now it seemed, one of the chips had exploded. I was far from crazy with these thoughts in my head, considering the pain I was in, but the agony in my mouth was far worse than the ‘schizophrenia’ I once, supposedly, had in my head.
“For God sake!” I cried at 3 am, after popping my eighth Tylenol in a 24- hour period, “I’m going to die if I don’t see a dentist today!”
A hospital in Downtown Brooklyn has a clinic– I remembered the place because I visited there last spring when my Medicaid was still active. I had as many new chips put in my teeth as the government would allow. Unfortunately, the City of New York and Mayor Michael Bloomberg limited me to just two dental visits per year; I had so much work to be done. While in that clinic of Brooklyn Hospital, I remembered seeing a sign that indicated that tooth extractions were $100. “How inexpensive,” I said to the receptionist. “Do you think they can pull them all today while I still got my Medicaid card?” I asked. She laughed and sent me on my way for another high-cost x-ray.
I marched to Brooklyn Hospital’s dental clinic yesterday morning, just before 9:00 am. I prayed with an aching mouth, every step of the way. I asked the heavenly father that the place be open. I passed St. Mary’s Episcopal Church and made the sign of the cross– not because I’m Catholic, but because there are always so many Hasidic Jews near St. Mary’s. How crazy is that? I ask as I ‘Father, Son and Holy Spirit’ myself, kissing my sore lip as if Jesus might be sitting on a bench nearby. I wondered as I spat on the sidewalk if anyone even attends the huge cathedral for services in an age where demon casting is so commonplace.
The clinic was closed. I nearly fainted, wondering if I could tolerate the pain for three more days. There were no signs on the hospital’s clinic door, but a man in a white coat (probably a Jew) reminded me of a psychiatrist as he lip-synched through the glass doors, telling me quite clearly, as if I could read his thoughts and lips, that the clinic would not open until Tuesday, after Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. I gave him the middle tooth.
By 3 pm yesterday afternoon, I decided to stop fasting and eat something, despite the pain. On my way to the Pioneer supermarket on DeKalb, after nearly running down a flock of city pigeons with neon pink, threadlike down upon their long necks, I noticed a sign for a dentist posted near the large condominium complex just south of supermarket. There were lights on inside what I concluded was the dentist office at the edge of the condominium known as Ryerson Towers. I decided to ring the doorbell, despite a sign that informed the demon possessed that on Saturday, the office closed at 1pm.
I asked to make an appointment and explained to the receptionist that I needed the earliest possible slot on Tuesday– “I nearly died last night,” I explained. “I have never felt anything like this.”
“Do you have something for the pain?” A woman sitting next to the receptionist asked as she extended her hand to shake mine, “Hi! I’m Dr. Poindexter,” she said.
“Very nice to meet you,” I replied. “Tylenol seems to be working better than the Advil I took all night.” I returned my demon-possessed stare to the receptionist and asked, “Can you give me an idea of the cost for a tooth extraction?” I asked, “I know the tooth needs a root canal and a crown, but I cannot afford it. I’m not working and have no insurance.”
“I can give you an estimate,” the receptionist explained, smiling at me with teeth whiter than my underwear, “This is only an estimate, but it will be in range of approximately $180…”
“Yes, it could be more,” the woman next to her, Dr. Poindexter, explained, “depending on how it looks when I examine it, and how difficult it is to extract.”
“I’ll give you three hundred if you do it today,” I responded, pretending to be joking, but holding my jaw as if the Holy Spirit was inside the body of a black woman on Martin Luther King’s birthday.
Money is the root of all evil! In less than ten minutes, I was on a comfortable chair, watching the Steeler’s game on a wide-screen television mounted on the wall near the ceiling, and receiving the most refreshing shot of Novocain ever to embrace these lips.
Just after I had received my shot, Dr. Poindexter noted the total cost would be $330. I didn’t even blink as she said this but watched as wide receiver with long hair made his way to the line of scrimmage.
“I don’t know how I can ever thank you enough,” I expressed. “This is the kindest thing anyone has done for me,” I mumbled with cotton in my mouth. Businesses never stay open, even in an emergency these days. I think I would have died if I had to wait until Tuesday to get this tooth out. It’s amazing, there are a million nail salons open in Brooklyn today– all run by the black women of the East, but finding a real saint on a day like today is a gift from God. Thank you so much for being here for me!”
“You are welcome,” Dr. Poindexter said. “It feels good to make someone’s day. I could tell you were in a lot of pain when you came in here. I could see it on your face. I do have magic hands,” she said, jokingly. “If you want to do me a favor,” she asked, almost as if it would be too much of a bother, “go on line to dentist dot com and give me a good rating.”
“Oh– I’ll do more than that,” I shared. “I’ll write about you. Being in my blog is like being in the Bible,”, I joked.
I winked at her as I walked out the wooden door, wondering if demons, saints and thought-control were real or just something we imagine when seeking out a good tooth exorcist.
Ayanna E. Poindexter, DMD
General and Cosmetic Dentistry
309 Lafayette Avenue