Saturday, June 4, 2011

The Toothache

Rabbi Nachtner: "How does God speak to us?It's a good question.There was this goy "Dr Lee Sussman".Did he ever tell you about the goy's teeth?So, Lee is at work one day.You know, he has the orthodontic practice there at Great Bear.He's making a plaster mold.It's for corrective bridgework in the mouth of one of his patients,Russell Krauss.The mold dries, and Lee is examining it one day before fabricating an appliance.He notices something unusual.There appears to be something engraved on the inside of the patient’s lower incisors.

Hey vav shin yud ayin nun yud.Ho-she-ay-ni.
"Help me. Save me."

This, in a goy's mouth.He calls the goy back on the pretense of needling additional measurements for the appliance."

Dr Lee Sussman: "How are you?Noticed any other problems with your teeth?"

Russell Krauss: "No."

There it is.Ho-she-ay-ni.

Dr Lee Sussman: "Help me."

Rabbi Nachtner: "Son of a gun.Sussman goes home.Can Sussman eat?Sussman can't eat.Can Sussman sleep?Sussman can't sleep.Sussman looks at the molds of his other patients,goy and Jew alike,seeking other messages.He finds none.He looks In his own mouth.Nothing.He looks in his wife's mouth.Nothing.But Sussman is an educated man.Not the world's greatest sage, maybe.No Rabbi Marshak.But he knows a thing or two about the Zohar and the Kabbalah.He knows that every Hebrew letter has its numeric equivalent.8- 4-5-4-4-7-3 Seven digits.A phone number, maybe?"

Dr Lee Sussman: "Hello? Do you know a goy named Krauss, Russell Krauss?"

8- 4-5-4-4-7-3: "Who?"

Dr Lee Sussman: "Where have I called?"

The Red Owl in Bloomington: "The Red Owl in Bloomington?

Dr Lee Sussman: "Thanks so much."

Rabbi Nachtner: "He goes.It's a Red Owl Groceries, what have you.Sussman goes home.What does it mean?He has to find out if he is ever to sleep again.He goes to see the Rabbi Nachtner.He comes In, he sits right where you're sitting, right now."

Dr Lee Sussman: "What does it mean, Rabbi?Is it a sign from Hashem? 'Help me'.I, Sussman, should be doing something to help this goy."

Rabbi Nachtner: "Doing what?The teeth don't say."

Dr Lee Sussman: "Or maybe I'm supposed to help people generally lead a more righteous life?Is the answer in Kabbalah? In Torah?Or is there even a question?Tell me, Rabbi,what can such a sign mean?"

Anonymous: "So? What did you tell him?Nachtner?"

Rabbi Nachtner: "Look."The teeth, we don't know."
"A sign from Hashem?Don't know."
"Helping others?"Couldn't hurt."

Anonymous: "No, no,but who put it there?Was it for him, Nachtner? Or for whoeverfound it? Or for just... For, for..."

Rabbi Nachtner: "We can't know everything."

Anonymous: "It sounds like you don't know anything!Why even tell me the story?What happened to Sussman?"

Rabbi Nachtner: "What would happen?Not much.He went back to work.For a while, he checked every patient’s teeth for new messages.He didn’t find any.In time, he found he stopped checking.He returned to life.These questions that are bothering you,Anonymous,maybe they're like a toothache."

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