THE STIFF UPPER LIP

I say: "I know you--at the first sign of trouble you shut up tight."

You say: "There never was a problem so big I couldn't run around it."

I say: "You kill it with silence."

You say: "You talk at it 'til it dies of boredom."

All fine. All true. But, when I wake up in the chair and feel hollow sockets with the tip of my tongue--sockets where my healthy teeth have been--and realize that the kindly, protective dentist has pulled the wrong teeth, I will surely say through the pain and blood and all to the honorable doctor:

"You bastard, how could you do such a thing?"

You, however, would shut your empty mouth and go home and file suit and love only women who wear false teeth.

What I'm saying is, in the long run, we'll get enough of the silence that drowns us all.