Smelly Socks: Don't mess with the tooth fairy

By Johanna Bloom
May 24, 2012 at 12:24 a.m.
Updated June 29, 2012 at 1:29 a.m.

When Austin's first tooth came loose, he was absolutely ruthless about pulling it out. It started in the morning with barely a wiggle, and by the afternoon, Austin had yanked it out all by himself.

He was smiling his toothless grin at me while a red stream of blood was running down his chin. He was so proud of himself. He put his white and shiny accessory into his Tooth Fairy pillow and eagerly waited to see what was left for him in the morning.

Of course the anticipation of what the tooth fairy would leave for him soon began to wane after a multitude of teeth were pulled, but the thrill Austin got from pulling his baby teeth out, still seemed to intrigue him. Boys are rough and tumble, and if blood is involved that is even better.

Next up was Jamison. Jamison pointed out while we were on the way to school that his bottom center tooth was loose. "Oh, Jamison, that will be coming out real soon," as it really was already quite loose.

Of course, Austin then started recounting his tooth pulling stories in gory and bloody detail. I noticed that Bubba seemed to squirm a little with all of this tooth loss talk. I told him that he needed to wiggle it back and forth to get it really loose and he assured me that he would.

Three weeks later and Jamison's tooth was still wiggly intact. When I asked to check how loose it was, he squealed and closed his mouth firmly. When I asked him if he wiggled it, he suddenly changed the subject. He was generally not interested in that tooth coming out. I started wondering how any two boys could be so unlike in certain areas.

Then it happened. Austin got Jamison's baby tooth out after all. While over at a friend's house swimming in their pool. Jamison screamed and came running over to me, and I saw the all too familiar stream of red blood. "Mama, Austin is being mean to me. He pulled the 'breathy-thing' thing out of my mouth."

That "breathy-thing" is also called a snorkel, and when Austin pulled the snorkel out of Jamison's mouth he also pulled out the loose tooth. Jamison only cried when he saw the bright red blood. When I asked if his mouth hurt he said "no." Then he beamed with delighted that he had gotten rid of that tooth.

He ran around showing everyone the hole that removed tooth left. Apparently he had worked himself into frenzy about the tooth coming out, that he was too nervous to even wiggle it. When the tooth was finally out he was so relieved.

Then the tooth fairy question came up. The tooth was never recovered and is still probably on the bottom of our friend's pool. Austin did attempt a valiant recovery mission for it; although he never recovered it.

Jamison worried about what the tooth fairy would leave for him, without the proper tooth evidence. With my encouragement, Jamison carefully wrote the tooth fairy a letter explaining how it wasn't his fault that the tooth is missing, and that his brother is to blame for the entire ordeal.

He carefully placed his heartfelt note in the pocket on the back of his tooth fairy pillow. Then I heard little boy giggles coming from Jamison's bedroom.

Later that night when everyone was sleeping, I prepared to make the tooth fairy deposit. I turned over the pillow and the carefully written note was missing. I noticed the note haphazardly placed across the room on Jamison's dresser and a white spearmint flavored Tic-Tac was placed in the tooth pocket.

I know it was a Tic-Tac because Austin happens to love them, and he happened to have a box of them in his room. My boys were in cahoots in trying to trick the time-honored tradition of the tooth fairy. I turned Jamison's note over and in nondescript handwriting wrote "Nice Try," and left a dollar for his missing tooth.

The next morning two somber little boys appeared and not a word was mentioned about their trick. They looked as if all the air had been taken out of their balloons.

Jamison got rid of his first baby tooth. Austin got to experience the gory tooth pulling experience once more. And both my boys learned that you don't mess with the tooth fairy.

Johanna is a proud seventh generation Texan. She lives on her family's South Texas ranch with her husband and two lively boys. Email Johanna Bloom or Anita Spisak at



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