Child Harbat’s first front tooth is gone, like a door pulled off its hinges. Is this the face of pain, of embarrassment, of relief of a long-hanging vestige of childhood dropping away in the plodding march to adulthood? No. It’s too sunny and she wants me to hurry up and take the damn picture so she can got to school.
When you think about it, it’s a fairly dramatic thing, losing a tooth. What other part of your body that identifies your smile, your face, your personality, falls off? It’s like losing an eyebrow or having your nose molt. Now that this tooth is gone the others are feeling self conscious, and the second front tooth is shifting like a movie-goer in his seat after the fourth hour of a John Quincy Adams biopic. Soon there’ll be nothing there but a big pink gummy gap. But it’ll be good for holding straws and popping off bottle caps.