May 11, 2006 12:09PM

Bloody Madness

God bless Sarah Lyall. Not only does the New York Times correspondent pen a steady stream of stories about the wackiness of the United Kingdom's National Health Service.  She also drops references to Austin Powers and The Simpsons.

Her latest is a May 7 article on dentistry in Britain titled, "In a Dentist Shortage, British (Ouch) Do It Themselves." Lyall introduces us to Britons who yank out their own teeth rather than rely on a "state-financed dental service [that is] stretched beyond its limit, no longer serves everyone, and no longer even pretends to try."

The local private dentists are pricey, but some Britons are cutting those bills in half by visiting dentists in Hungary. Competition is funny that way.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go floss.