This patient of mine was a local school teacher. An educated person, you would imagine.
One rainy afternoon he sat on my dental chair. Then, I reclined it so that he was lying almost horizontal: his head and mouth at one end of the chair and his feet at least five and a half feet from his mouth. I administered the local anaesthetic, waited for anaesthesia to become established, and then repaired the teacher’s decayed molar tooth with a silver amalgam ‘filling’. When the procedure was over, the teacher left my surgery apparently quite content.
An hour or so later, the teacher returned to our practice and asked the receptionist to allow him to speak to me. He entered my surgery and pointed to a mark on one of his brown suede shoes.
“I believe that you must have dropped some of your chemicals on my shoe while you were treating me,” he said.
I looked at the mark and quickly realised that this fellow was hoping to be compensated, possibly for a sufficient to buy a new pair of shoes.
“Unlikely,” I replied, “while I was treating you, you were lying horizontally. Your mouth was a long way from your feet. If I had dropped something, it would not have fallen anywhere near your feet.”
“Mmmmh,” he replied.
“Furthermore,” I added, “it’s been raining heavily all afternoon. Maybe, you picked up that mark while walking along the wet streets.”
The teacher left, and I heard no more about the problem with his footwear. I was left thinking what an unintelligent man he was, and that somebody had qualified as being capable of teaching young people.