How the world has spun on its axis since I left England seven years ago! Today I read the tragic story about how the spiralling costs of dentistry in the UK have forced people to remove their own teeth, just like in medieval times!
When I lived in England, it was all so easy. So simple. Now, I'm not saying that I ever did any of the following, but there were some unscrupulous people (you know who you are) who did the following:
1. Fiddled the Dole
Remember when finding yourself made redundant from a job was a cause for celebration? Break out the champagne! You are now officially on the dole (you can't claim dole if you leave a job). Yes! YEEEEESSS!! Now, no need to ever worry about looking for a job, because the Job Centres in London are hopelessly understaffed and do not have time to keep track of every Tom, Dick or Dolebludger. The main thing they need to know is that you are hopelessly overqualified for any of the seven pound per hour jobs cleaning encrusted shit off the local public toilets. So just go in and say something like "My last job was as a Senior Derivatives Analyst and I pulled in 300K" and watch their faces go blank. Case closed. You have won. They will never be able to find you a job.
Or better still, say you are something like a highly qualified sheep herder. This will fox them. Because there are no jobs in London herding sheep! Result! You will be on the dole gravy train for your foreseeable future. Then pop off and get a nice cash in hand job at your local. Sweet.
I bet things aren't as rosy these days, eh? Can anyone enlighten me?
2. Getting Dental Treatment
Used to be totally free if you knew what you were doing. All you did was tick a box on the back of a form saying you were unemployed and you got the treatment for nothing. No one gave a monkies if you actually were or checked. I have, of course, never done something like this. Ever.
And now I read that desperate people in England are pulling out their own teeth:
One respondent in Lancashire, northern England, claimed to have extracted 14 of their own teeth with a pair of pliers. In Liverpool, one of those collecting data for the survey interviewed three people who had pulled out their own teeth in one morning.
"I took most of my teeth out in the shed with pliers. I have one to go," another respondent wrote.
Others said they had fixed broken crowns using glue to avoid costly dental work.
What have you done to this once proud country Gordon Brown? To think that the British Empire, which once held sway over a population of 458 million people, is now reduced to a desperate nation of black teethed folk jabbing at their bleeding gums with rusty pliers!
Who am I? Displaced Londoner now living in the States with my two little girlies and long suffering husband. Co-author of hilarious parenting book Cocktails at Naptime www.cocktailsatnaptime.com
My mom's an Austrian, my dad's a Brit, which makes me a Britaustrian, or possibly an Austrish?