Tooth Fairy here, with big problems. First off, I’m running an incredibly unbalanced budget. One-way cash flow is a recipe for disaster. It isn’t quite as bad as the USA’s nearly $20 trillion dollar deficit, but my operation has no positive outcome in sight.
Some of you may have heard about the most recent tooth fairy survey. It wasn’t fake news. Believe it. I paid out an average $4.66 per tooth last year, up 75 cents from 2015! And if that isn’t bad enough, the average for a first tooth in 2016 was $5.72. It doesn’t matter the type, incisor, molar, or canine. All that equates to nearly $300 million dollars in the U.S. alone.
Who needs to raise the minimum wage? Just keep putting teeth under your pillows and I’ll keep paying. Is that what you think? Well, I have news for you. The well is running dry! Who can sustain this kind of business model?
What? Did I hear you say Santa Claus? Don’t make me laugh. For starters, good old St. Nick works one day (actually night) a year. That’s a really tough schedule. Second, he has so many helpers I’ve lost count. Doubt me? I urge you to stop by New York’s Radio City Music Hall during the Christmas Spectacular show. You’ll see so many dancing Santas on one stage that your collective heads will spin. How many tooth fairy helpers have you encountered? I thought so. I’m a one-person operation. Third, do you think Santa goes into his pockets to buy all of those toys? Give me a break. Among numerous other charities and programs, Toys for Tots provide the jolly one with an unmatched supply chain.
Another one-day-a-year worker is the Easter Bunny. Don’t get me started. I work nights 365 days a year. Easter eggs and candies and chocolates all add up to one thing: rotted teeth that fall out more quickly than bunnies…never mind. My costs always rise following Easter.
It’s too bad baby teeth fall out and are replaced. There are so many. Why couldn’t it be baby arms or legs that fall off and grow back? The Arm Fairy or Leg Fairy would only have to pay off twice per child. That’s fiscally responsible. So what if an arm or leg is too big to fit underneath a pillow? Just slip it under the bed. I’ll find it and leave the money. But that’s not reality.
Given the current deal-making climate in the U.S., let’s deal. If you want me to continue paying the rates to which your spoiled brat kids have become accustomed, a few changes have to take place. I propose a self-sustaining system that will keep this operation in the black.
Let’s look at the numbers. The average child gets 20 baby teeth over the course of several years. Baby teeth stop coming in at age 12. There are approximately 24.7 million children ages 0-12. My proposition? Mr. and Ms. Parent, you pay me 75 cents for each baby tooth. Why should teething pain be limited to your child? Simple math tells us that that equates to $15 into my coffers per kid. Multiply that by 24.7 million rug rats and my operation has an annual income exceeding $370 million. I can live with that.
Stop squawking. My job isn’t getting any easier. You millennials are having lots of kids. Always in a rush — how about taking the time to wash the blood off your kids’ teeth? Is that asking too much? I have to wear protective latex gloves when handling those crimson things. Gloves cost money, and finding them to fit my hands isn’t easy. I have to purchase them online, they’re produced overseas, and that gets into the whole free trade thing and shipping and brokerage charges and whatnot. And another thing, how about doing me a solid and turning off your home security systems on those nights when you put a tooth under your precious one’s pillow? A little cooperation on your side goes a long way.
I have some other business-friendly ideas, like non-payment for teeth that are knocked out, either intentionally or by accident. Do you have any idea how much my expenses increase during youth hockey season? Why reward the little tykes for roughhousing? And, I don’t pay if a dentist has to pull a baby tooth. Let nature take its course. Speaking of nature, ours is an aging population. Permanent teeth eventually fall out and are replaced by false teeth. Believe me, I’ve seen my share of bedside choppers languishing in glasses and cups. How about throwing me a couple of bucks for every elderly permanent tooth that falls out?
I’m not only a fairy — I’m also a job creator. I have plans to offer franchise opportunities. Think about it. We could call it TF Enterprises (don’t want to spoil the Tooth Fairy surprise for the gullible). I see a future with TF Enterprises in every city. Working nights only, you could keep your day jobs while running a TF franchise. That would save buku dollars in pillow-to-pillow travel.
The more I think about it, the more your franchise and I could mutually benefit from technology. Think about a business model where email photos of teeth (proof may be required that nature caused the loss) are sent and funds forwarded via PayPal or by some other electronic means. No travel. Instant payment. It’s a win-win.
But, as always, I’m open to negotiation and the art of the deal. You want me to pay double if your child loses both front teeth at the same time? Interesting proposition. I won’t rule it out. Let’s talk.