Travis Smith: my resume, bio and photos back to the main blog page

Look closely today at your screen.  Is it bright white? White? Bone? Off-white? Yellow-y?  Postit Note-ish?

Well, I just started using Crest Whitestrips, and damned if I can tell the difference anymore.

I have no idea why the whole world has collectively woken up one morning, looked in the mirror, and noticed, hey, my (collective) teeth don’t reflect 100% of the ambient light in this room!  What’s up with that?

But for whatever reason, the thing to do these days seems to be bleach the heck out of the old cuspids.  So who am I to buck trends?

I went looking at the grocery store / pharmacy for Whitestrips.  I saw lots of toothpastes dedicated to whitening, some whitening gum, whitening paste in a dropper bottle and whitening mouthwash, but no Whitestrips.

They had removed the boxes from the shelves and put them behind the counter, like they used to do with condoms and adult magazines.  What was I getting into?

The box is large, square and blue, with a burst of light on the front that reminds me of the halos around street lamps in a foggy night back when street lamps were white, not orange-y—hey, maybe they need to bleach those as well!

There are 56 strips in a box: 28 for upper teeth, 28 for lower teeth.  You do it twice a day for 30 minutes—more on that later.  That means it’s a two-week process.

The box says your can use them any time, while “commuting,” “showering/dressing,” “reading/watching TV” (aren’t those mutually exclusive?) “housework[ing]” or “surfing the Net.”  Which is how I chose to use them, of course.

I have them on right now.  Can you tell?

They remind me of bubble wrap, if the bubbles in bubble wrap were really really small, and instead of being filled with air, they were filled with a clear gel slightly thicker than egg whites, and instead of being self-contained, they were open on one side, so the gel could be squished out against some surface, like, say, one’s teeth.

The strips come in two different shapes, and they only cover your front teeth, so your back teeth have to stay icky.  Not a problem, unless you have a really big mouth, and I’ll leave the obvious joke to you.

Basically, you peel this strip of gel-covered bubble plastic from an applicator, cling-wrap it to your teeth, and then say not a word for 30 minutes.  it’s painless, boring, and impossible to tell if it’s working.

One thing I have noticed, though, is that from the bathroom to the bedroom to the kitchen to the computer room, every single room in my house has a mirror and a slightly different quality of light.  So far, it seems like it’s had very little effect, though my top middle teeth do seem a little more see-through—I hope that’s a good thing.

I’ll let you know how it goes 14 days from now…


“The sad truth is that most evil is done by people who never make up their minds to be good or evil.”

...who said it?

“Almost every American I know does trade large portions of his life for entertainment, hour by weeknight hour, binge by Saturday binge, Facebook check by Facebook check. I’m one of them. In the course of writing this I’ve watched all 13 episodes of House of Cards and who knows how many more West Wing episodes, and I’ve spent any number of blurred hours falling down internet rabbit holes. All instead of reading, or writing, or working, or spending real time with people I love.”

...who said it?

“Live a good life. If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by. If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones.”

...who said it?

“I play with variables constantly.”

...who said it?

“Only the person who has learned Continual Love coming from a heart of Gratitude/Worship can effectively deal with the problem of loneliness.”

...who said it?




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