Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Allee Willis Marches on Detroit! Part 15, The Miracle Dentist Story

I’m not a lover of dentists. Though I have one I do love now in LA, Dr. James Formaker, I’m still feeling repercussions from a butcher in Beverly Hills who not only put me through two unnecessary surgeries, one of which he didn’t even have conscience enough to check to see if the surgeon had preformed the correct one of – which he hadn’t – and all of which cost me over $25,000 and an even more severe price of walking around with a sore mouth for the last four years. His name is happily provided upon inquiry. But I had  a tooth adventure during my trip to Detroit a few weeks ago that completely restored my faith in these people who dutifully drill in your mouth in search of decay.

I had just finished giving my speech on the rejuvenation of Detroit at the Rust Belt to Arts Belt III conference. We were at the reception and as I chomped down on the softest of Vietnamese spring rolls I felt something lift up in my mouth.

No, this couldn’t be happening! I was in the midst of this intense trip, filming it is a documentary, doing a ton of press, with one more big performance to go. The last thing I needed, especially after hours, was trying to find a dentist in a town where I knew none.

First, Michael Poris, called someone he knew.

But that dentist sounded too too scary on the phone.

He was exceedingly pessimistic that most likely nothing could be done despite the fact that I felt all I needed was a little glue.

Then, as if the Tooth Fairy was looking down on me, someone I met only minutes before overheard the ruckus and called her dentist.

The difference of talking to Dr. Doom and the bright and sparkly personality of the woman on the end of Kathy Huber’s phone was night and day. So me and my entourage, Mark Blackwell, Laura Grover and Denise Caruso, piled into our rented van and followed this angel of mercy to Grosse Pointe Woods…

…where Dr. Kathleen Gibney met us with her two kids and dog in tow. First of all, how great is a dentist who’s already home cooking dinner who comes in after hours for someone who they don’t even know?? This woman deserves sainthood.

Dr. Gibney not only let everyone stay in the room with me, which went miles in terms of quieting my panic down,…

…but also let us document every single inch of the procedure.

She didn’t care how close the camera came.

I’m fine in almost any traumatic situation as long as a video is rolling…

…and as long as friends are along to act as dental hygienists and stick their hands in my mouth when assistance is needed.

There wasn’t an inch of pain and Dr. Gibney preformed flawlessly.

Besides Dr. Gibney’s lively, atypical-for-a-dentist personality and excellent skills, this was the dentist office of my dreams. The colors were bright and the dental chairs were comfortable, actually a perfect match for my outfit.

The last place I’d expect to find kitsch exuberantly displayed is in a dentist office. But here it was, Photoshoped photos of stars with toothbrushes…

and bottles of mouthwash.

There were oodles of excellent dentally-correct album covers, like Lou Rawls with dental floss,…

…and these folks with toothbrushes and toothpaste:

I especially liked this title spelled out in dental floss:

There were LP covers everywhere you looked.

Even the light fixtures called my name.

As fate would have it, I had 25 pounds of candy in the back of the van that I bought for my big high school marching event coming up on Saturday. I know that a dentist’s kids are the last people in the world I should be offering an opening up of the portals of chocolate to but it seemed like the perfect capper to a most unexpected evening of fun.

So rather than being in tooth trauma, I was in absolute heaven. I’ve never had such a great time at a dentist office in my life.

Thank you Kathy Huber and Jeremy Martin, pictured here at my big event Saturday morning, for leading me and my molar to salvation that fateful night.

If anyone reading this is from Detroit or surrounding areas and you’re not completely and ecstatically in love with your dentist, I don’t care how far it is to drive, a trip to Dr. Gibney’s is just what Dr. Willis orders. I even think I’ll get my teeth cleaned in Detroit just to see her again.

Share this page.   Subscribe to the blog.
Bookmark and Share
 


Categories: Consumer Alert!, Detroit, Health & Beauty, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Medical, People, Place, Travel

Creative Commons License
Protected under a Creative Commons license

Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – 1960′s “Last Leg O’ The (knee) Trip” Pen

I’m happy to report that my own recently operated on left  knee is finally allowing my leg to return to its natural state such as modeled by this fantastic “First Leg ‘O Trip’ Washington souvenir pen. Although my own appendage is not as shapely and slim as this perfectly poised on-point gam, it’s just about at the point of where it looks more like an ‘I’ than a ‘V’ and is allowing me to hobble around rather than setting up permanent camp in bed.

READ MORE »


Categories: Accessories, Detroit, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Medical, Mumford high school, Songwriting, The Color Purple

Creative Commons License
Protected under a Creative Commons license

Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Jean Craig, Graduate Nurse Book + Knee Update

I’ve been blessed this past week to have great friends grace my bedside and nurse me through knee surgery, dressing up as nurses themselves for my amusement. Nancye Ferguson was one such nurse in training as I took my first steps a couple of days ago:

READ MORE »


Categories: Book, Fashion, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Medical

Creative Commons License
Protected under a Creative Commons license

Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Drs. Casey and Kildare Diaries + Knee Progress

I’ve laid in bed two days now nursing my just-operated-on knee back to health.  As someone who literally never sits still, I’ve been a fairly model citizen since the surgery to repair a torn meniscus on Tuesday. Portable electronics certainly help and my love of bad television has been an excellent babysitter. But, most of all, I have excellent friends who have come to visit me and partaken in some spectacular photo ops:

READ MORE »


Categories: Celebrity, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Medical, Memorabilia, TV/Radio

Creative Commons License
Protected under a Creative Commons license

Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – 1950′s Band-Aid Sheer Strips and Knee Op Progress

I’m happy to report that I’m making a swift recovery from surgery to repair a torn meniscus in my left knee yesterday. I still have all the festive bandages on that were my medical souvenirs, but within a week or so all will be removed and I can scale back to the dainty little strips that normally cover cuts and scrapes.

READ MORE »


Categories: Animals, Bathroom, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Medical

Creative Commons License
Protected under a Creative Commons license

Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Paging Dr. Casey!! I’m having knee surgery today…

Today I’m having surgery to repair a torn meniscus in my left knee. The operation, a relatively quick outpatient job, was supposed to occur on my right knee but after putting the surgery off for over a year and a half I favored the good leg so much that literally the day I finally scheduled the invasion the good knee went eeewwwrrripppp!!! and snapped just like the other one.  Calling Dr. Casey!!!

READ MORE »


Categories: Accessories, Celebrity, Financial, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Medical, TV/Radio, video

Creative Commons License
Protected under a Creative Commons license

Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Japanese Etiquette “A Sick Bag”

If you weren’t nauseous before you grabbed for this “A sick bag” or “Sac a vomis” you would be after taking a look at everything going on on the packaging.

READ MORE »


Categories: Accessories, Bad translations, Bathroom, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Medical

Creative Commons License
Protected under a Creative Commons license

Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Happy Hanukah Menorah Hat


I used to hate these theme hats as they always look so dorky. But now that I have a blog and a museum that spotlight kitsch this sort of haberdashery seems to fit right in, especially when it’s on my head. And especially when it’s this awkward menorah hat on this first day of Hanukah. The candles don’t stand up straight and nine candles is kind of too wide for a hat anyway.


READ MORE »


Categories: Hats, Holidays, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Medical, Memorabilia, Religion, TV/Radio

Creative Commons License
Protected under a Creative Commons license

Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – Dr. Ben Casey Pencils

I loved me some Ben Casey when I was a kid. I had Ben Casey diaries, wallets, cufflinks, bobble head dolls, anything and everything that had that kind-of-smile-but-not-really brooding look that Vincent Edwards, who played the handsome doctor, knew how to give with amazing regularity. Here he is as a cufflink with the same intent look:

READ MORE »


Categories: Celebrity, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Medical, Memorabilia, TV/Radio

Creative Commons License
Protected under a Creative Commons license

Allee Willis’ Kitsch O’ The Day – LUCKY Medical Van

lucky-med-van

When it comes to naming your company I’m always fascinated when people come up with the most seemingly inappropriate names possible. I can think of a lot of things I’d be calling myself if I were being transported in this Medical Transportation vehicle but I doubt one of them would be “lucky”. This is the last place you would be if you were, in fact, “lucky”. Maybe the name has great psychological impact as the patient steps or is wheeled in through the doors. And I’m certainly not one to diminish the power of positive thinking. But I think I would want the driver or any personnel on board to be a little more connected to the reality of the medical situation.  “Lucky” enough to hitch a ride, yes!  “Lucky” to be in the van, no.

READ MORE »


Categories: Bad translations, Kitsch, Kitsch O' The Day, Medical, Transportation

Creative Commons License
Protected under a Creative Commons license