Posted by: Jeremiah Graves | February 20, 2009

Too Much Jaw

human-skull-side-viewMy jaw clicks. It clicks a lot.

Well it locks and then it clicks.

So I guess in all actuality, my jaw locks a lot and—as a direct result—it clicks, a lot.

It’s not cool.

It started in May of last year. To be more precise it started at roughly 4pm on May 22, 2008. I was riding back to Mankato with Mike after watching the Twins lose a heartbreaker to the Texas Rangers by a score of 8-7 in ten innings.

I was in the passenger seat, ranting and raving about the game and my flight from Boston and the Eiffel Tower and my soon-to-be botched best man speech at Craiggers’ Wedding and cheesy hotdogs and any number of things really. I hadn’t slept in a couple of days; as is often the case before I fly home—be it May or December—I am usually coming off a week of sporadic sleep and overnight shifts.

That particular week I’d watched Jon Lester pitch a no-hitter at Fenway Park and then promptly left the stadium, wandered across the Charles River to MIT and worked an overnight shift with Margaret Willison, she of the Walla Walla, Washington, Willisons. Work an overnight with Margaret and when the wee-morning hours hit and she goes bat-shit crazy, she’ll bust out her genealogy and you’ll find out exactly what I’m talking about.

Anyway, the point is I hadn’t slept and I felt really off my rocker the way things were and then out of the blue, whilst I was talking (read: rambling like a madman) to Mike my jaw just locked. It was locked shut and I didn’t know what to do. Mike—who listens to people rant and rave all day at work as a banker—seemed pleased/relieved/comforted that I’d finally stopped my insufferable ass-rambling…until he realized I had neither passed out from sleep deprivation or the 14 beers I’d consumed at the Metrodome.

He asked the one universal question that men are allowed to ask each other without breaking dude-law.

“Dude, you okay?!”

To which I replied…“mmmmmmpppfffff….mmmppffff….”

After a few Jim Carrey-inspired facial contortions I got my jaw to pop and my mouth to open back up so that I could drunkenly/sleepily ramble on some more.

Mike—no longer a banker but serving as a practicing and licensed physician—promptly diagnosed me as having TMJ.

Now I had no idea what the hell TMJ was. So I replied “too much jaw?!”

Mike—now back to being a practicing and licensed dick—informed me that I was retarded and/or suffering from a mental deficiency of ostentatious proportions. As much as I appreciated this second diagnosis, I was more inclined to learn about this “TMJ” of which he was speaking. However, given that my jaw was working again coupled with 14 beers and multiple days sans sleep, I simply forgot all about it.

Since then my jaw has been doing the whole locking thing off-and-on, although much more frequently lately. In fact, it is very common in the mornings and at night when I’m in bed. Grace—in all her limitless patience and understanding—has come to a breaking point where she now goes into a full-body shimmy at the mere sound of bone-on-bone clicking and uses words and phrases such as: “grotesque,” “that sounds awful,” “sickening,” “ewwwwww,” “gross,” and “if you do it again, I’ll kill you in your sleep.”

Anywho, the whole point of yet another of my sleepless ramblings is that I’ve finally learned a little bit about TMJ.

Apparently Mike was correct and it does not stand for “too much jaw,” but rather “temporomandibular joint disorder.” Luckily it’s really no big deal. Apparently like 80 bajillion people* have it and its totally common. No need to get my jaw replaced or anything like that.

Good times…um, I guess that’s it?!


I should establish a no blogging rule when I haven’t slept…



(*this figure is all-kinds of bullshit)



  1. I’m impressed you remembered my rambling stories about the Walla Walla, Washington Willisons.

    You did, however, forget to mention the key fact that one of those Willisons was named Willa Lee. Making her:

    Willa Lee Willison from Walla Walla Washington.

    Yeah, that’s right. And don’t worry folks, you don’t actually have to get me exhausted to know about that. I’ll share it freely.


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