News from the Tennessee Valley Columnists


What’s with the Frankenstein teeth?

Believing that George Washington's false teeth really were made of wood, my Grandfather Glenn could see their advantage over the ones he wore.

His never fit well and he constantly used his pocket knife to scrape what he called "high spots." Fixing one usually left another spot, thus during my childhood he was always whittling. Wooden teeth would have taken more easily to his knife.

He never bought teeth intending for them to stay in. He left them on the lamp table with his Bible, next to his favorite chair, except at mealtime.

His teeth were a subject of grandchildren conversations. So last week when our granddaughter Emma Grace coaxed her brother Wright to put in his Halloween Frankenstein teeth so he would look like Tom Tom, I cried foul.

I have a clear plastic guard that Dr. Forrest Bryant made to keep me from grinding my teeth at night. It's in a case when not in use, or when Regina isn't telling her grandchildren to look at Tom Tom's false teeth.

"GiGi and I have a secret," Wright said, as he giggled to me that Regina revealed one of my innermost secrets.

"Tell me so I will know, too," I said. He wouldn't tell. But Emma Grace would. And did.

"GiGi showed us your teeth," she said, as she danced with delight.

"Why do you have those teeth?" Wright asked.

"You have to wear one of these when you clench your teeth," I answered.

"I won't clench," he promised.

They also remember the day from a couple summers ago at the beach when a cap came off one of my front teeth. Their cousin Trey who lives in Savannah, Ga., remembers, too.

It was a big event that took precedence over playing in the Atlantic. Lynn turned it to her advantage in getting Trey to brush his teeth.

"If you don't brush, your teeth will fall out like Tom Tom's did," she said.

Trey asked later over the telephone if I was being sure to brush.

Tom Wright Tom Wright
DAILY Executive Editor

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