Saved by flossing --flossing?
Not that he would save my life – it’s how he did it.
Bob wrote a column about flossing.
This man comes from proper people who would never discuss personal hygiene in public, much less write about it in the newspaper.
His father, Walter, is a towering, principled man, impeccably groomed. I’ve never seen him wear anything other than a suit and tie. I imagine he mows his lawn in a suit.
His mother: Think June Cleaver. Ruby’s hair is always perfectly in place. Lipstick precisely applied. Her purse hangs neatly from her wrist – never casually slung over her shoulder.
I don’t mean to imply that they’re stodgy, dried-up prune type people. They’re not. They’re just proper.
They would never use a toothpick in public or in private, nor would they think to write about it in a family newspaper. Furthermore, writing about flossing is certainly not what they brought up their son to do. I imagine they nearly fainted when they read Bob’s column about his having noticed toothpicks and contortions of his tongue were no longer successful means of dislodging kernels of corn from his molars.
I hope they take comfort in the fact that his departure from decorum may have saved my life, and others’ lives as well.
What got to me was this line about flossing: “. . . can extend your life, since it keeps low-level infections from developing in your mouth and weakening your immune system.”
Infections related to the mouth. Weakened immune system.
Those are scary words.
Those are the words that moved Bob to begin flossing. And using mouthwash.
And his words probably saved my life.
I finished my bowl of soybeans and went straight for the floss and mouthwash.
I want to be like Bob, who claims that by flossing, his teeth may outlive him by centuries.
If Bob’s children follow in their father’s footsteps, their teeth, too, will carry on the family name long after they are gone.
Now I have Bob to thank, not only for extending my life, but perhaps even saving it.
I never thought that flossing might be the key to my legacy.