Child Of A Dentist

Today I learned, O Waly, Waly, that Benjamin Britten (1913-1976) was the child of a dentist. Britten celebrated his fiftieth birthday on the same day that both Aldous Huxley and C S Lewis died, which – as all students of such matters are vibrantly aware – was the date of the assassination of President John F Kennedy. Incidentally, not long before his death, the spookily tall and almost blind Huxley answered the doorbell of his California home to a young vacuum cleaner salesman named Don Van Vliet, soon to be better known as Captain Beefheart. It would be fitting if I could end this squib with the observation that Van Vliet, too, was the child of a dentist, but his Pa was a van driver for a bakery, toting pastry-related items hither and yon, and I have no idea of his Ma’s occupation, alas.

5 thoughts on “Child Of A Dentist

  1. And Aldous Huxley was the grandson on Thomas Henry Huxley (of ‘Matters Pertaining To Bees (19th Century)’ fame). And he and C.S.Lewis and J.F.Kennedy all died on the same day that my partner was born. And she has toothache at the moment.

    And my favourite crooner of all time is none other than Captain Beefheart.

    Are you in league with the devil, Key?

  2. Myth has it that the realisation of who the myopic householder was prompted the captain, oh! my captain, to point to his vacuum cleaner sales sample and say “this sucks”…

    Now cover my entire bodice with a von calodna

  3. The Stock Collection Manager in the South West is called Richard Carter and he had a day off today to go to the dentist…
    This is all getting deeply creepy…

  4. Beefheart gave himself the equivalent of a Knighthood by adding Van to his name, unless he did this in tribute to his fathers job. Lars von Trier did the same adding a von to his name to sound more German. Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II added a von the Trapp family name when writing the musical. Rodgers first partner Lorenz Hart took to laughing gas to cure his alcoholism on the advice of his dentist. Who I’m sure made a profit on the sale of the gas!

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