Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Root canals and wankers

This will be a short post, since I'm feeling the effects of having a root canal today. Nothing like a root canal to remind you of the difference between acute and chronic conditions. The anticipation is worse than what actually happens. OMG what's that drill attachment? That high-pitched whine! The weird smell! I'm sure he hasn't used enough anaesthetic! ...And then comes the bill, and three hours of a face that feels rubbery and inflated on one side.

Speaking of bills, I'm not sure eczema is an expensive condition to have, if you've got a choice. As an adult, I buy a couple tubes of steroids every few months, plus a regular supply of moisturizers and my favorite tar shampoo. There are more pricey afflictions out there. The real cost is in quality of life and self-esteem.

Tar shampoos-- I intend to spend a few posts on that topic. I live in California and someone here, a few years ago, sued companies that make tar shampoo because they didn't have a warning label on the bottles saying there was a remote chance you'd get skin cancer. (Skin cancer from weird organic chemicals is no fallacy-- chimney sweeps were prone to scrotal cancer caused by phenolic compounds in soot.) But in medicine the proof is in the dosage and the statistics and I believe in the hundred or so years that tar shampoos have been used, no studies have shown any correlation between usage and cancer of any sort.

Anyway this guy sued the company and won (not sure about the monetary settlement) and as a result no makers of tar shampoos will sell their products in California now. I remember buying tar shampoo in Santa Barbara in 1999 and now you can't find it anywhere-- I get it online.

The gentleman concerned-- as Mark Twain said,
"if I had his nuts in a steel trap, I would shut out all human succor and watch that trap until he died."


  1. There are certainly a lot of details like that to take into consideration. That’s a great point to bring up.
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