02 January 2006
When I was a kid I hated flossing. Not just because of the annoyance of running a thin piece of wax coated string up and down through all of my teeth with little perceptive change (unless I hadn’t flossed in a long time) but just the whole process of locating suitable floss, we had several different floss in the house, and extracting the allotted amount (I think it was about 6 inches), wrapping it around your fingers tight enough to hold onto but not so tight as to turn your finger purple, in general it was a pain. As I grew up I collected the sample floss that the dentist gave with each visit. By the time I left home I had an 18 month supply of floss. Finally I ran out. I was pained at the thought of having to actually buy floss (I think for the first time in my life). I eventually gave in to the evil marketing of Johnson & Johnson and bought a canister of floss. It cost a whole $3.79 for 200 yards. That night I pulled out 6 inches of my newly purchased floss and started flossing. I went through the usual motions of floss with my circulation cut off and finger barley having enough room to get around my teeth, then I stopped. I realized that I had been flossing like that for years and if I kept it up my floss would last me a life time. I don’t know how much people feel about having the same container of floss forever but I know that at some time it losses it’s flavor and in general gets gross. I decide to seize the moment and floss with a new piece of floss and this time it would be a foot long. So I yanked and cut and enjoyed using the incredibly long piece of floss. My roommate gave me a really weird expression when I told him that I would never again submit to using a piece of floss less than 8 inches. I feel at this point I should give a moral so I will. There comes a time in all of our lives when we will be challenged to break with the traditions that we grew up with. Sometimes we need to hold true and fast and never let go. Things like not smoking, always telling the truth, being honest in business are hallmarks of good character and should never be changed. But sometimes we should let go as soon as possible and experience life from a different perspective. Things like how much floss you cut, what type of deodorant you use, what style your hair is, the taste of eggplant should be evaluated though out your life (especially if you are not enjoying your current experience with the aforementioned items). If you decide to change you will experience something new and different (hopefully for the better). But, if you decide to stay with what you had before you will have a new appreciation for what you have. Either way your life will be improved. But remember, hold fast to your character, never let it degrade. As an end note, my current roommate has taught me to floss before I brush my teeth. It doesn’t leave my mouth with the same minty fresh taste, but my mouth does feel a lot cleaner.