After Dinner Conversation

Volume 4, Issue 9, September 2023

Carl Tait
Pages 68-78

Bill and the Tooth Fairy

How do you define a rational, versus an irrational act of faith? Why is a faith in God socially acceptable, but not a faith in the Tooth Fairy? Do we have a duty to inform others when we believe their faith is not grounded in our reality? In this work of philosophical short story fiction, Bill believes in the Tooth Fairy. Bill is 28 years old. His girlfriend finds this odd, and sometimes socially awkward, but otherwise harmless. This changes, however, when Bill has his wisdom teeth removed and places them under his pillow with the expectation that the Tooth Fairy will accept his offering and provide him her payment as her showing of appreciation. To appease his belief system, Bill’s girlfriend decides to take the teeth and leave Bill some money, but unknowingly does not leave him payment in the “right” amount. Bill interprets this to mean the Tooth Fairy is unhappy with his offering of teeth. His girlfriend comes home to find that Bill has knocked out his own teeth so as to make a second, and what he sees as proper, offering.