I’ll be real honest with you: I’ve seen some bad teeth here in Germany. Like, Austin Powers bad. Some of these Germans look like they’re packing lemon skittles between their gums, and I’m definitely not tasting the rainbow. Even my dentist in Hannover tells me people don’t really take care of their teeth in this country. Back in America, my dentist would say, “You really need to floss at least once per day,” while my German dentist said, simply, “You floss? Wow.”
As we all know, Americans like straight, white teeth. We’re obsessed with them. We think you have bad teeth if you can’t blind a child with the gleam coming off your incisors, and I’m no different; I keep my ivories as white as possible and they’re naturally straight. However, had I been born with crooked teeth, my parents would have slapped so much headgear on me I would have been unable to lift my giant skull up off the dentist chair.
Although I can’t be sure, I think the “good teeth” phenomenon is slowly catching on here in Germany — at least with the younger generations. My wife, for example, has amazing teeth; they seem impervious to yellowing and stay white no matter how much tea or coffee she drinks. They’re so white they practically glow in the dark. It’s like she has tiny little stars in her mouth. Also, they’re super straight and she flosses every night like a madwoman. My wife’s teeth are so perfect, I once asked her to explain them to me: Did she attain them from some higher power, like Prometheus stealing fire from the gods? Where did these little miracles come from, woman!? To which she shrugged and said:
“My teeth only look so good because I had bracelets.”*
*That would be ‘braces,’ or ‘Zahnspangen.’