Susan's Blog

Tuesday, August 1, 2006

Ode to Boy

Whenever Benji sneezes, Ned and I say, “LBS,” which means, “Little Baby Sneeze.” His sneeze is still just a little squeezy thing, kind of like a baby would make. I love how there’s nothing very gross about him yet (and I say “gross” with the greatest love, some of my best children are a bit gross; keep in mind, you take the whole container, the whole package, of a person you love). But Benj’s feet are still kind of small and smooth, and do not smell bad (yes, I smell them furtively, not being inappropriate) and his face is still unmarred by the stretch and sheen of adolescence. In my mind and under my breath, I call him “Little Perfect,” but I don’t want to give him a kinna hurra, so I don’t say it too loudly. Also, God bless him, he’s far from perfect, as are we all.

But the other day Max chipped his tooth while practicing juggling with pins. We were not paying attention to him — a good moment for the evil eye to strike — because Ned was chatting about juggling with the lifeguard, who actually juggled, too, and looked like Ned, twenty years ago, but with an outrageously smooth honey tan. (I was, needless to say, in heavy, mouthwatering, X-rated fantasy mode as I watched the two of them, biceps bulging, red swimsuited, golden haired, bearded, masculine knees bent, tossing colored lacrosse balls in the air with perfect precision. But I behaved and sat quietly on the blanket, probably searching for remaining snax for Nat. I can’t remember.)

So where was I? Max chipped his tooth. We looked at it in horror; about a third of it, gone. The other lifeguard said, “Put it in milk,” of which we did not have any right there in the middle of the beach. I saved the chip in the discarded grapes baggie, which is the way we save lost baby teeth for the tooth fairy, who would have been horrified to find this wonky white chip should she be searching under Max’s sweaty pillow for unfathomable reasons. But she has not had need to go into that room for years, except to make the occasional grimace at the clutter.

After I got used to it, I realized that I preferred Max this way, snaggletoothed. He had a new impish look about him. I told him he should tell people, “You should see the other guy.” He laughed, because he’s probably the last person on earth who would actually get in such a bloody, damaging fight as that. Not a wimp, but a true, Zenlike pacifist. I’m sure, however, if you really got Max going, he could level you in a second.

I brought him to the dentist this morning and asked, “What if I like the way this looks?” But they thought I was kidding and made him a nice bonded thing, returning his smile to its former, Nedlike perfection. Sorry, but yes, perfect — knock wood. Or something harder, perhaps. Knock juggling pin.


Chance chipped his baby tooth when he was nearly 2. It looked horrible to me for a good long time. And he still has all but two baby teeth because he is such a bad grinder. He sees a good dentist that actually doesn’t take his insurance, but I guess we scored points due to autism and a referral when he needed six caps on his molars. But you know what? I have really come to love snaggly and crooked and pointy teeth. Take a look at Tori Amos or Jewel or Amy Mann…they just wouldn’t be the same without them. Max is very handsome in a Ewan McGregor or Jamie Oliver kind of way.

— added by mrs. tina gilbert on Tuesday, August 1, 2006 at 6:17 pm

“I’m sure, however, if you really got Max going, he could level you in a second.”

Psh. I think not 😛 (eh, maybe…I’ve never tried)

And actually, you were reading, mom not looking for natSnax.

To follow up on the actual post, I now have a new tooth, but its kind of big and hard to use…Oh well, I guess I’ll get used to it eventually.

— added by Max Batchelder on Tuesday, August 1, 2006 at 10:31 pm

Oh and thank you, Mrs. Tina Gilbert, I don’t really like that picture…

— added by Max Batchelder on Tuesday, August 1, 2006 at 10:33 pm

I guess maybe use something softer while practicing juggling, Max.

— added by Anonymous on Tuesday, August 1, 2006 at 10:55 pm

Max, if you like juggling, you should check out GloBalls. I want a set for myself because they are just awesome!
If you can find the movie “Mirrormask” (directed by Neil Gaiman) you can see them in action. 🙂

— added by Jen on Thursday, August 3, 2006 at 12:07 pm

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