Disclaimer: A few of the names in this article have been changed for privacy.
Most people who work as dentist’s assistants for almost two decades will have at least a few interesting stories to tell. That is especially true of those whose bosses have a very unique sense of humor combined with remorseless prankster mischief. Former dentist’s assistant Claudia Williams has quite a number of stories, most of them centering around her boss, Doctor Bob.
Claudia’s position as dentist’s assistant meant that she helped prepare for surgeries and was in charge of handing Doctor Bob the tools he needed during each procedure. Unsurprisingly, there were many gross moments, but one story that stands out to her was when an older man came in to get a crown for his tooth. As they were testing the crown in place to see if it fit, they lost hold of it, and the man reflexively swallowed it. Everyone was unsure of what to do as the man didn’t have insurance to pay for a second crown, but he just told them to wait and left the office. Several days later, he returned with the retrieved crown, which they sterilized for an hour before cementing it on, good as new.
Another favorite story from the dentist’s office was when a ten-year-old boy came to get a cavity filled. Claudia remembers that he was a little troublemaker and refused to listen to his parents or anyone in the office. After much rigamarole, they finally had to give him anesthesia in order to fill the cavity. It was then that Doctor Bob’s unique sense of humor came into play. The boy had a generous headful of curly hair, and as Claudia watched in horror, the doctor found a pair of scissors and snipped off a handful of curls. The boy had so much hair that the trim wasn’t even noticeable. Doctor Bob spent a few minutes arranging the hair to look like bushy eyebrows and various other things before finally getting back to business and filling the cavity.
Doctor Bob was known for his April Fool’s Day-level mischief. He took great joy in pulling pranks around the office until he had earned himself a reputation for it. When the doctor spotted a can of soda unsupervised by its owner, he would shake it hard, leave it, and listen for the inevitable explosion of fizz as he innocently went about some other task. One of his favorite tricks, which others in the office also participated in, was to convince someone to put their hand over a cake at a party or get-together and then shove their hand into the dessert. Many cakes were ruined in this frequent prank, and yet there was always someone who innocently fell for the trick.
At one party, Doctor Bob fell for it himself, despite having so much experience in doing it to others. Claudia’s husband, Brian, innocently insisted that he could feel warm air rising from the cake and suggested that the doctor feel it for himself. Doctor Bob stretched out his hand, perhaps assuming he could pull back in time to avoid the trick. However, Brian was too fast for him and slammed his hand into the cake so hard that it splattered across the wall and onto the guests, making a huge mess.
Every once in a while, someone managed to play a truly wonderful prank that Doctor Bob didn’t see coming. One such instance that Claudia remembers was when her coworker Jack had just gotten a new Mustang and was eager to show it off to everyone in the office. He announced one day that he was going to drive it under the second-story office window that overlooked the parking lot to show it off, so everyone eagerly gathered at the window. No one suspected that there was a prank coming.
Jack drove up in the Mustang and waved to the group above. At that moment, a homeless man appeared and ran toward Jack. In that area, there were quite a few homeless people, but unbeknownst to everyone, this man was actually one of Jack’s buddies who had volunteered to help with the prank. As the group of Claudia’s coworkers and Doctor Bob watched in helpless horror through the window, the homeless man attacked Jack, yanked him out of the Mustang, and pretended to knock him out. Then he jumped into the car and drove out of the parking lot onto the freeway that was right by the office. Here, the prank began to deteriorate as a policeman happened to be nearby, and having witnessed the entire scene, started to chase Jack’s friend. Meanwhile, upstairs in the second story where the dentist office was, everyone was still in various stages of shock and panic, and Doctor Bob was yelling, “Call the police! Call 911!” at the top of his lungs. It was a bit of a mess for Jack and his friend to calm everyone down and straighten things out with the police officer, who obviously wasn’t very happy about the situation. But in the end, Doctor Bob admitted that it had been a good prank, and he’d fallen for it hook, line, and sinker. Car thefts were all in a day’s work for Claudia and her coworkers.
Photo Credit: “Dental Exam Room.” Sky Ridge Periodobtics & Implants, Skyridgeperio.com/Office-Tour.html.