I busted out my front teeth — for the first time — when I was 2 years old running through my grandmother’s house with a dowel rod. I tripped on their fluffy, multi-colored colored carpet and out came those baby teeth.
I lost my adult front teeth in the annual Creston High School preseason football “towel” game played under the bright lights of Townline Field (now Panther Field).
I remember this event clearly. I was about a 105-pound freshman wide receiver running a slant pattern when I collided with defensive back Matt Buck and linebacker Kevin Mellinger on a pass thrown my direction.
I’m not completely sure how my teeth were dislodged, but best guess is my helmet fit too loosely and the mouthpiece — attached to my facemask — was ripped out during the collision.
Dentist Dr. Dave Buck was there watching his son.
About 60 football players from all levels and various member of the community spent about 15 minutes looking for my teeth on the field that evening because Dr. Buck said my lost teeth could be put back in my mouth and may take.
We never found those teeth.
They’re still on the field somewhere south of the 50-yard-line buried in the dirt, probably soaking up fertilizer.
For a couple years after that, I wore a “flipper” partial plate that had a single front tooth attached, but contact sports — especially basketball — were hard on that piece of equipment. The flipper bit the dust when I took an elbow to the face in a basketball game against Atlantic.
Dr. Buck then sculpted a tooth for me my junior year of high school with the help of a blue light. I lost at least two of those sculpted teeth during high school and into college.
But, earlier this year, I became Dr. Michael Buck’s problem. We made plans to fix my teeth more permanently now that I’m a fully grown and spend less time on the basketball court.
I’ll get a permanent bridge sometime this summer.
How long do you think I can keep these front teeth? Any bets?
In other news:
• Our 16-page Crestubilee prom tab with about 80 photos of CHS prom is in today’s paper. All photos were taken by Jerry Hartman of Creston. Contact him at 641-782-4808 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you want a compact disc of the photos taken.
Also, thanks to CNA staff Jake Waddingham and Sarah Brown for taking time out of your Sunday to put this tab together in such short order. And, thanks to CHS students Maxx Walters and Michelle Powers for helping identify your classmates in the photos Sunday.
• Stormy Lee and I took a weekend vacation to Galena, Ill., earlier this month. We toured the house Ulysses S. Grant lived in when he won the U.S. presidency in the late 1960s, toured the De Soto House in Galena where president Abraham Lincoln spoke from the balcony and even made a stop so I could run the bases at the Field of Dreams in Dyserville before coming home.