Monday, December 08, 2008

I Have No Way To Fix This

One of the things I've noticed in moving from large cities to smaller ones is how the local businesses are arranged.
When I was researching the move to South Carolina, I verified that delivered here and took the job, without a second thought about how I'd grown used to purchasing things in Houston, the 4th largest city in the US.
Houston was big enough that stores could specialize.
There was a place on the Southwest Freeway which only sold furniture. For Dentist's offices. Not the special scary dental stuff, either. Just the waiting room stuff.
And they remained in business because either there are enough Dentists in Houston re-decorating their waiting rooms at any given time or it was a front for some kind of human trafficking/money laundering thing.
Actually, either is pretty likely.
But the point is that the smaller the town, the less dentists need new waiting room furniture and the businesses have to diversify.
This is how the tiny town I went to college in developed a store which offered laundry services, movie rentals, live bait and lingerie. I'm not making that up.
Columbia, South Carolina falls somewhere in the middle area where there are hobby shops which sell gaming supplies but not gaming stores where they throw funny-shaped dice at people who wander in looking for a remote controlled car or a train set.
Also, I'm not sure anyone else has noticed but the economy seems to be in a bit of a downturn. Don't spread that around, though. No sense throwing everyone into a panic.
This has lead to even further weirdness in business offerings.
Saturday I visited the outside of our front door.
I never do that, but in this case I was checking for something which I'd ordered online (a specialty item unavailable at a regular diversified store) and I was hoping it had been left there while we were out.
It was not, but there was a flier tucked between the doorknob and the door frame.
The flier was not the expected maid service/lawn care flier I've grown to expect, but one offering (I'm totally serious) "At Your Home Dentistry".
Apparently, a licensed South Carolina Dentist will just come to your house to do cleaning, whitening, extractions, fillings and crowns.
And they take some dental insurances.
You know, there are some things which frighten me.
This concept encompasses about four of them in one little flier.
I guess the appeal is that one can receive dental care without spending time in a waiting room with outdated furnishings, but the wrongness of it chills me to the very core.
I don't think I'd let someone come to my house to cut my hair because of the potential for mess.
Inviting someone over to dig around in my mouth with sharp things is in a new area just past "never going to happen".
When you invite a dentist to your house, do you offer him a cola or glass of wine?
What if he hates the decor? The guy is obviously ashamed of his ancient waiting area, but what if he hates the window treatment with the monkeys on it? Adorable monkeys wearing vests, even.
If someone is going to be digging around in your mouth, how certain do you need to be that they are actually trained to do so?

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