a peek inside the fishbowl

07 Apr, 2006

How to go from having your mouth frozen to talking intelligently on the radio

Posted by andrea in: Misc. life

[Edited to add: The healthy eating segment I participated in yesterday is now online at the CBC website. If you missed it you can check it out here. Scroll down to where it says “Andrea … is a mother of two young children …” and click listen. Then come back and let me know what you think. :)]

The dental thing was a real downer yesterday. Parasol, you were wondering what it felt like? Well, imagine having your fillings removed and then replaced. Oh, the drilling. The high-pitched squeal, ack! I hate even thinking about it. Upon inquiry I discovered that my dentist doesn’t have personal CD players for patients like me.

So I had no choice but to stare at the ceiling. I tried imagining myself on a tropical beach, looking down on myself lying on the sand, drink in hand, and toes in crystal blue water. But every image of myself also included two people sticking suction devices and miniature construction tools in my parched, cotton-filled mouth. It was impossible to shut them out.

Spit. Rinse. Drill. Repeat.

Well, I survived. But the freezing didn’t wear off until about 2:30.

As I wrote in an email to my friend Doug:

“I’m trying not to be nervous. I am anxiously waiting for my mouth to return to normal because I had two fillings redone this morning. :(

Worst case scenario: I vill tolk like siss.

Best case scenario: I will be witty and charming and make the host snort water out his nose and be asked to return as a regular host of a hip parenting show.”

I arrived at the downtown CBC studios ten minutes early. Happily I discovered a little cafeteria on the premises. Hmmm. But there wasn’t really enough time to have a coffee, and I didn’t want to carry it in with me to the studio. But I needed a pick-me-up. Quick, what should I do?



Espresso. Ask me if I’ve ever had one. Ha. No. This was my first. I liked it! Call me crazy, but I started to feel its effects it right after my first small gulp. Perhaps it was because I had hardly eaten anything all day. No matter. In the first minute or two I felt a small wave of dizziness, but then after three or four more I was feeling pretty good.

I waltzed back into the lobby and approached the fellow at the receptionist. The espresso had obviously given me super powers. I was waltzing. And grinning like a lunatic. In a public lobby. I’m amazed I wasn’t thrown out. Note to CBC execs, I was very impressed by Eric the receptionist, who seemed to have special psychic powers.

I started to explain. “I’m here for the…”
“Hold on a sec, let me guess.”
“I can tell by the look in your eye that you’re Andrea …”

And with that he picked up the phone and called the fellow who was supposed to meet me.


I was introduced to Tina, my co-panelist, and we waited to be escorted into the studio.


That’s Rob Clipperton, the host. He was very friendly, and very nice.

I think the discussion went really well. And I’m pleased with how it came out in the end.

When I left the studio, this is how I felt:


I felt big. I took big steps. I bounded into the elevator.


I am still secretly hoping that a radio exec was listening and is planning to give me a big break. I can see it now: “Parenting from the Edge…” It was so much fun, and I would do it again in a heartbeat.

Thanks everyone, for your helpful comments and emails in the past couple of days.


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The Obligatory Blurb

My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human daughters: Emma (20) and Sarah (18). During the day I work as a writer at The Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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