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Thursday, February 5, 2009

Day Glo Teeth

I watched Working Girl the other day. Seems it's on all the time. The 1988 hair, makeup, and clothes are sometimes laughable, but the story is great. Remember it? Melanie Griffith is a secretary, attending night school, and trying to work her way up. Sigourney Weaver plays her conniving boss. Harrison Ford is the love interest, who coincidentally looks a lot like my dad, which is why I could never have a thing for him. It's a Cinderella story, set in the corporate world. I love it. Carly Simon won an Oscar for Let the River Run, as she so very well deserved.

As I was watching, I couldn't put my finger on what was so different about how the actors looked. Was it just the hair, makeup, and clothes? No, it was something else. And then it hit me. It was their teeth. Their un-whitened, perfectly natural teeth. And they were beautiful.

Have you noticed that super bright white teeth have become commonplace? I look at Regis Philbin and I want to put sunglasses on. Sorry, Reg, no one your age has teeth that bright. And it looks wrong. I actually think it makes you look like you're trying much too hard, like you're older than you are.

We've become a society of perfection seekers and we can be brutal to those who aren't perfect. Jessica Simpson was recently crucified for gaining a little weight. There are television shows, websites, and radio programs that are dedicated to ripping apart actors and entertainers. Every little wrinkle, bulge, or age spot is critically examined. Pictures are drawn on, cruel comments are made, and God forbid someone in the entertainment industry runs an errand without makeup on or in clothing that wasn't put together by a stylist.

I hate every bit of what this does to those people and what it's doing to us and to our children. No one ever reaches perfection, it just isn't possible. White teeth, faces frozen from Botox, body weights that aren't possible to achieve without starvation, and sizes of zero just aren't real.

Maybe it's better to say that we are perfect in our imperfection. I love every quirk, every difference, big, little, tall, thin, freckles, you name it.

It worries me that one day, we'll all look the same. Bleached teeth and all. Just like our commercial areas--all the same restaurants, all the same chains, no individuality in sight. What a boring world that would be.

And in honor of all those WHITE teeth, a White Bean Dip. I know, the relationship is a stretch, but it's late and I'm tired! I could have said, this goes out to all the Dips of the world.

Weight Watchers White Bean and Garlic Spread
Great served on pita chips or use it on a wrap as a sandwich spread.

2 (16 ounce) cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, chopped (1 teaspoon)
1 lemon, juice and zest of
1/2 cup chopped parsley
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves
1/4 cup toasted nuts (optional)
1/8-1/4 cup olives, sliced (optional)
2-3 sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, chopped (optional)
rosemary sprigs (to garnish)
salt and pepper, to taste

Combine all the ingredients (except the rosemary sprigs and optional ingredients) in a food processor and process for about 30 seconds (until smooth). If desired, add the optional ingredients (tomatoes, olives or toasted nuts) and season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes (or overnight). When ready to serve, place the bean spread in a bowl and garnish with rosemary sprigs.
WW POINTS per serving: 2

Nutritional information per serving: 130 calories, 4.8g fat, 3.8g fiber


  1. I agree. I've always had fairly nice teeth, straight at least, but lately I've felt worse about them when I look at others' bleached-white choppers. Not that I'm going to go out and bleach mine. Thanks for reminding me that there are still some normal people out there!


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