Today, Mark needed me to book an appointment to see the hygienist. There was only one place I thought of, with only a little bit of general wincing from bad-dentist-associations and lots of actual fondness. Up on Westbourne Grove, that half-gentrified, half-shabby stretch, lies a dental surgery called The Archangel. It is, to my knowledge, the only dental surgery in w2 (and probably the WHOLE WORLD) whose principal dentist is a gothic christian vampire who wears striding leather trousers and is an unselfish giver of leaflets about Jesus, posted hopefully in the magazine rack. He is also a perfectly competent dentist. Who knew?
Here is pic of the outside – the surgery is to the right of the fake-tudor, first floor up. Note unobtrusive newsagents at ground level.
It is only upon finding the door between fake-tudor electrical shop and said newsagents that one comes face to face with THIS! Check out the sneaky little angel insignia. What casual observer would know what theological quandaries were posed inside?
And the door once opened reveals something akin to a golden Mayan temple! You are literally BLINDED by the brass!
And so the stairs, all twisted and worn, lead you to the reception. Perhaps not unsurprisingly, the receptionist is a small gothic woman with witchy skirts and blackest hair and night-shade nails and pointy boots, with a very nice phone-manner indeed. On the walls, The Archangel is furnished with little paintings of astral beings flying around at nighttime. I think they are the receptionists’ own work, no less. The magazine rack nestles box-fresh Christian tracts and manky copies of Hello!
Anyway, the surgery room is up another flight of stairs. All crisply white. The dentist (who is French) and his assistant never talk to you – you just eventually figure out to sit in the big chair in the middle of the room. The first time Dr Gothic Christian Vampire did my teeth, I noticed his really long black hair. Then he spoke to the assistant and whaddya know! He has vampire teeth! Actual filed-into-fangs teeth! Further visits revealed his biker chains and leather trousers. It was on my first visit though that he had put on the cd player a very loud American evangelical pastor giving a very loud sermon. Of course. No whale-music or Peruvian pipe-fluting here, more’s the pity.
Upon a little bit of lazy research, I found this:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2006/mar/21/fashion1 (sorry, shortening it seemed too hard). A little Guardian article on my gothic dentist, and others who Don The Black. At least you know I ain’t lying.