Welcome to the Chubby Chatterbox Newsletter, where I’ll be posting favorites from the Chubby Chatterbox archives. In addition, my complete thriller Return of the Mary Celeste will soon be serialized here for those who have asked for something beyond a regular post.

My novel is based on a true event, arguably the greatest maritime mystery of all time. In 1872 the crew and passengers of Boston brigantine Mary Celeste abandoned their seaworthy ship and its valuable cargo, vanishing in the middle of the Atlantic. Speculation over their fate has never abated. History records that after the Mary Celeste tragedy no one from that fateful voyage was ever seen again. History is about to be rewritten…

Return of the Mary Celeste

Prologue

Tragedy struck the brigantine Mary Celeste on the morning of November 25, 1872. The hourly log was later recovered from the deserted vessel; At 8 a.m. the last notation was made. By 9 a.m. no one remained aboard to chalk the next entry.

Something had terrified Captain Benjamin Briggs and his crew, prompting the seasoned skipper to make a decision certain to affect not only himself, his ship and crew, but his family as well—his wife and two year old daughter were aboard Mary Celeste. Much ink has been spilled in fanciful and scientific attempts to explain the calamity that engulfed this perfectly seaworthy ship, yet all that is known for certain is this: in a matter of minutes Captain Briggs became convinced that the only way to save their lives was by ordering everyone into a hastily launched lifeboat. By giving the order to abandon ship, he also launched the greatest of all maritime mysteries.

On December 5, 1872, a month after leaving New York Harbor, Mary Celeste was found drifting on a calm and empty sea. The ship was in fine condition, perfectly intact with valuable cargo safely stored in her hold, but the crew and passengers had vanished. None were ever seen again.

Until now….

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Buzzing in the Bathroom

March 27, 2017

This post might fall into the “Too Much Information” category but I’ve been inspired by a fellow blogger who wrote a humorous and informative post about poop, so here goes.

 

A few months ago I had my annual teeth cleaning. The hygienist informed me I had very little plaque but I was brushing too hard and should consider using an electric toothbrush to avoid future gum issues. I drove to Costco and purchased a Sonic electric toothbrush.

 

These devices, I discovered, require some getting used to. A week after converting to an electric toothbrush, after I’d grown accustomed to the annoying sound of electric buzzing, I noticed it looked like snow had fallen in our bathroom. White specs were everywhere, like the dandruff on Bernie Sanders’ sport coats. Most people brush with an open mouth, but doing so with an electric toothbrush creates a toothpaste blizzard. I remedied this situation by closing my mouth around the toothbrush, which was when I noticed a more significant problem, one brought about by having something vibrating in my mouth.

 

At first I didn’t pay attention to it, attributed the problem to natural causes. But the problem became more acute as time passed. While brushing my teeth, I’d start swaying back and forth, hopping around or crossing my legs. If there were more of me it would have looked like a line dance. At first I blamed it on the fact that, at my age, my bladder seems to have shrunken to the size of a peanut.

 

The truth is this: a vibrating toothbrush in my mouth makes me instantly need to—pee! I have no idea why this should be, but it’s a fact I’ve managed to prove by using the restroom before brushing, encountering the same problem. The solution might be to brush my teeth while sitting on the toilet, but I haven’t resorted to this—yet.

 

In an attempt to make lemons from lemonade I tried to put this knowledge to use.  (Maybe a post about urine should avoid mentioning lemonade.) Mrs. Chatterbox has what she refers to as a “shy bladder.” Whenever she goes to her doctor and a urine sample is required, she sits in the restroom for as long a forty minutes trying to squeeze a few drops. Nurses often knock on the door to ask if she’s okay. She’ll run water from the faucet and think about waterfalls, usually to no avail. Recently when she was scheduled for a check-up I suggested she bring along my electric toothbrush.

 

“I can’t brush my teeth in the doctor’s office,” she scoffed.

 

“Of course you can. You’ll be behind a locked door. No one will see you.”

 

“They’ll hear me.”

 

“Who cares?”

 

She rolled her eyes. “I care.”

 

To date, she hasn’t brought an electric toothbrush to her doctor’s office. Too bad; She’d be out of that bathroom lickety-split, with exceptionally minty breath.

 

Do you think she’ll ever take my brilliant advice?

 

I wouldn’t bet on it.

 

 

 

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Comments

26 Comments
Tee hee....I have NOT noticed that while using my electric toothbrush! Very strange ...I'll have pay attention! Have a great week!
By: Kathe W. on March 27, 2017
Definitely the solution of a genius!
By: The Broad on March 27, 2017
If i ever try an electric toothbrush, i'll be prepared!
By: messymimi on March 27, 2017
I use an electric toothbrush but admit I've never had that problem.
By: Alex J. Cavanaugh on March 27, 2017
I haven't had that issue either - so I think this might just be YOUR problem. I was holding my breath waiting to find out what you were going to say - you just never know what the CC will talk about these days! Ha!
By: The Bug on March 27, 2017
I don't know why, but it does have that effect. Funny post.
By: cranky on March 27, 2017
I love my electric toothbrush. At first, I didn't like it that my lips were vibrating a bit. I got used to it after a few days, but as for peeing, nope! never had that problem. You should make a video of your pee-pee dance for our enjoyment. Love, Janie
By: Janie Junebug on March 27, 2017
LOL! I've used an electric toothbrush for about 3 years now and I've found my visits to the hygienist a lot easier since. Not encountered the other problems you mentioned though :)
By: Botanist on March 27, 2017
Hilarious! I've used an electric toothbrush for years for the same reason (brushing too hard & wearing away gum tissue and enamel) and it's really helped. But not once has it made me need to "go"! May I make a suggestion? Put a bit less toothpaste on your brush (size of a small pea), and don't close your mouth around the toothbrush after all, but keep your head over the sink to capture whatever spray you still get. I'd rather clean the mirror/sink every day than have the kind of urges you describe; I get them more than enough the rest of the time :)
By: jenny_o on March 27, 2017
Surprising effect... a vibrating device makes you pee. FWIW, Google reveals you're not alone.
By: Daniel LaFrance on March 27, 2017
Well this was certainly an interesting (and entertaining) post! I've used a Sonicare toothbrush for decades (I fact-checked before saying that - came out in 1992) and I can't say I've ever had that problem.
By: Kelly on March 27, 2017
I've never had that problem; I just wanted to say I LOVED your cartoon!!
By: fishducky on March 27, 2017
Ah, the beauty of blogging is throwing anything out there and finding out you are not alone. I adore my electric toothbrush but I don't get that reaction,.Maybe it is more of a guy thing.
By: Arkansas Patti on March 27, 2017
PS Glad my post encouraged you to take the leap.
By: Arkansas Patti on March 27, 2017
Well yeah if they heard that buzzing in a locked bathroom they might think she was up to something else.
By: PT Dilloway on March 27, 2017
What a curious effect! I used to have an electric toothbrush, but never noticed such a problem. I guess, as usual, my mouth was OPEN. I'm relieved (heh, heh) that this story didn't turn out to be about poop!
By: Val on March 27, 2017
When you get older quite a few different things bring on the urge to pee!
By: red Kline on March 27, 2017
Your advice to Mrs. C is brilliant and her reaction is priceless. The entire idea of this has me smiling... and thinking really wicked thoughts. Maybe good you're not gay (you know, that vibrating phallic thing in your mouth making you have to pee). My apologies, I tried to find a way to say that delicately and gave up. Besides you started it!
By: Mitchell is Moving on March 28, 2017
I do not use an electric toothbrush, but hubby has gum issues like you and does use one. I will have to ask him that. He does not Blog and thinks my blogging is an odd habit, so this question should really convince him we are all nuts.
By: Tabor on March 28, 2017
I knew there was a reason I've not gone to an electric toothbrush
By: Sage on March 28, 2017
Good grief, I would never have thought it. But filed the information away in case it ever comes in useful!
By: Jenny on March 28, 2017
I never used a vibrating toothbrush...not for brushing my teeth (or peeing) anyway. J/K. Or am I?
By: Robyn Engel on March 28, 2017
Maybe you could brush your teeth with your mouth open while in the shower, then with a shower wand (if you don't have a shower wand you should get one...they're great!) you could simply wash down the shower walls. Ta Da! :)
By: scott park on March 28, 2017
I was going to say something, but PT Dilloway took the words right out of my mouth.
By: Pixel Peeper on March 28, 2017
I'm telling my husband what you've discovered about the powers of an electric toothbrush. He has an electric toothbrush and now perhaps a solution to a problem other than gums.
By: jo on March 28, 2017
You may have opened a new area of medical research! I use a power toothbrush and have not noticed that condition however. I hope there is no power of suggestion involved.
By: Tom Cochrun on March 28, 2017

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