Hold Me, Drill Me, Kiss Me is a slender but amusing monologue by a guy named Joe Zarrow. Mr. Zarrow is a courageous and ambitious fellow: he’s an actor, and a playwright, and – here’s where the courage comes in – a high-school English teacher, and – here’s where the ambition comes in – he has his teeth checked on a regular basis.
Zarrow uses his tooth-drilling adventures as a frame for broader autobiographical tropes. These are not extraordinary stories, à la 7 Sins, but things familiar to most of us, through our own lives or those of our friends: internet dating, jargon-mouthing education-system bureaucrats, the sweaty hearts of ninth graders. To deal with all of these challenges, we need good teeth, just as our mothers taught us. Zarrow has lousy teeth.
So he goes to the dentist. Folks who plunder among the enameled bones of our mouths tend to be eccentric, as you would be if you said “rinse…spit” fifty times a day. My own childhood dentist subscribed to the Congressional Record and regaled me with ancient tales of Karl Mundt and Richard Nixon as he drilled, sans Novocain, within the tender corridors of my mouth. I’m sure you could produce a similarly depraved story. Zarrow’s dentists appear to be relatively sane; it’s he who is nuts.
Zarrow’s particular schtick is his mock-pedantic presentational mode. Thus he gives us a Venn diagram of his two pediatric dentists – one competent and spectacularly uncool, the other cool but spectacularly incompetent. (The common shaded area is that they are both Washington-area dentists.) The device was not overdone, and thus was very funny when used; but when it came time to manipulate the figures he was projecting on to the screen, Zarrow’s verbal skills deserted him.
I note that this presentation took about the same amount of time as my last dental visit; involved no Novocain; and was considerably cheaper. On the whole, I think my teeth were in better shape afterward, too.
- Running Time: 60 minutes
- Tickets: Hold Me, Drill Me, Kiss Me
- Remaining Shows: Sun, July 20 at 5 . Wed, July 23 at 8:30
- Where: Warehouse Next Door, 1021 7th Street, NW