Now you all know that I am all about recycling and reusing. I can find a use for just about anything — old wood pallets, tin cans, beer bottles. But even I am stumped about what to do with about 2 to 3 hundred (yes – hundred) extra teeth.
You see, a few days ago, a good friend decided to clear out her old work area. Before retirement, she had a full dental lab. I struck real jewelry making” gold” when she decided to get rid of a small kiln, a great air cleaner, a polishing lathe, a magnifying light and even a tabletop sand blaster! My little old organized librarian heart went pitter-pat when I saw she was also getting rid of three multi-drawer organizers. Of course, first I had to get rid of the false teeth that were carefully arranged inside each of the many drawers!
What is an ecologically minded metalsmith to do with all these ceramic molars? Not only does it go against the grain to throw them out, but what if my garbage man takes a closer look and decides that all I need is a clown suit to complete the profile of a raving serial killer? These teeth don’t compost and burying them isn’t an option with three dogs. I can just see one of my neighbors walking across the lawn and discovering a small pile of slightly dirty human incisors of various sizes. Kinda gives you a bad rep in the neighborhood.
Don’t anyone dare suggest that I should make them into a necklace — that is just not my style. I guess could sprinkle them on the table for a Halloween Party, but god forbid someone mistakes them for candy. The do have holes drilled into the bottom for mounting as crowns – maybe I could pass them off as freshwater half drilled pearls! Offering them free on Craigslist is also an option, but do I really want a stranger who is mysteriously interested in 2 to 3 hundred teeth coming to my house to claim them.
There seems to be no solution to this problem. I guess I’ll just have to put them all in a decorative basket, put the basket at children’s height with a “3 for a dollar” sign on it, and put it out at my next show this weekend. I’ll tell the kids they can make a killing reselling them to the Tooth Fairy.
Any better suggestions?