Tooth Appraiser

Did this tooth once grow in one of Sir Isaac Newton's many tumors?

Many people wrongheadedly believe that tooth collecting is a niche market and that there is no money in it.  However, this has been far from my experience– in my glory days, I traveled the globe as President of the Royal Guild of International Dental Valuators (or Valuateurs as they say in the French).  Still others believe that the 12 year apprenticeship and bylaw requiring prospective appraisers to be legally adopted by a Guild member are unduly prohibitive for those wishing to enter the field.  But I ask, what is wrong with hard work?  Has the whole world gone fickle?  And many simply wish to avoid the inevitable heartbreak at the all too frequent occurrence of appraising a decaying, poorly cared for (usually at the hands of the Lutheran Church) tooth.  To them, I say: good riddance.  Tooth appraisal is not for the cowardly.

For instance, it was during my watch that I was embroiled in the hunt for Judas Iscariot’s left incisor.  I had been writing a paper on the lost tooth, when a curator at the Mutter Museum who knew the tooth’s location was murdered by a diabolical pastor of the wayward Missouri Synod of the Lutheran Church.  Being the preeminent authority on dental symbology, I was called in to figure out the cryptic message the curator had written in his own blood prior to dying.  Little did I know that they considered me a suspect in the murder.  The curator’s niece, Jodie Sweetin, and I embarked on a race against the Missouri Synod to find the tooth, all while evading the authorities.  In the end, it turned out that Judas’ incisor had been embedded in Jodie’s jaw when she was just a youngster, so I wound up having to perform anesthetic-free dental surgery to properly remove it.  And what do you know?  It was more than a little worse for the wear considering the fact that Jodie is an incurable tooth-grinder.  Thus the value of the incisor was so greatly diminished that it was hardly worth the effort at getting it set in the ring I wear on my pinkie toe.  Such a let-down.  What is a Dental Valuateur to do when those entrusted with such priceless antiquities hide them in little girls’ mouths, or in mummified bat stomachs, or even in cans of condensed milk?

While it certainly took a toll on me to deal with these sorts of incidents on a daily basis, in the end it was the denial of my petition to the United Nations to preemptively remove the teeth of all potentially important world leaders and the refusal of the Guild to allow children as old as seven to begin their apprenticeships that finally drove me to resign from my post and leave the dental community behind me once and for all.


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