David After Dentist: Up Close and (Really) Personal

by | Apr 17, 2009 | Culture

I’m famous. By association.

Have you seen the YouTube video “David After Dentist”—you know, the one that’s been viewed almost 19 million times? Yeah, that’s my nephew. I would say I taught him all he knows, but since he’s now famous for being in a post-surgery stupor, I’m not sure what that says about my normal state of mind.

 

{youtubejw}txqiwrbYGrs{/youtubejw}

Anyway, last May my then-7-year-old nephew David had to have oral surgery and was quite nervous. His mom, Tessie, also had to work. His dad (my brother) was taking him to the dentist and decided to video record moments of the day so Tessie could see how their son did.

Little David did just fine in the surgery. But you never know what you might say or do while coming out of anesthesia—and that’s what started David’s unintentional path to stardom. Father and son were driving back home, and little David started talking. My brother knew he had to catch it on video, so he pulled into a parking lot and started filming. (You never see my brother’s face; it makes me think of the grown-ups on the Charlie Brown cartoons, except you can understand what my brother’s saying.) My nephew is groggy and a little confused and says things such as “Is this real life?” “Papi, you have four eyes.” “Is this gonna to be forever?”

 

Funny stuff. And I’ll admit, when I saw the video later in the evening I felt guilty laughing at my poor nephew. But when he started cracking up at himself—and I saw that he was OK—I knew all was well. The rest of our family watched, and then it was filed away as one of those home videos that goes into the family vault to be replayed at a rehearsal dinner or some momentous occasion. It was simply a special documentation of a day in my nephew’s life.

Several months later, in January, my brother started reconnecting with old friends on Facebook and posted the video on his page—again, thinking nothing of it. The video wasn’t easy to share there, so he posted it on YouTube.

My brother and sister-in-law had no idea what was coming.

Within four days it had been viewed 3 million times. And it increased exponentially from there. The views have since peaked, but it’s still quite popular.

When I first heard about the hits, I was amazed but I didn’t think much of it … until the media started calling. At first the entertainment shows started mentioning it simply as another YouTube sensation—shows such as VH1’s Best Week Ever and Inside Edition. Then there were a few of the regular homemade spinoffs where people would create animated videos using the audio. And then the newspapers started asking for interviews—the Wall Street Journal, Chicago Sun Times, Orlando Sentinel. Then the Today Show called. And that’s only the tip of the iceberg. (Honestly, I can’t keep up with it all.) What’s even more amazing is that the lines from the video have become part of people’s everyday vernacular. Other family members have encountered friends who love the video, and they’re shocked when they realize they’re related to the kid in the video. Even singer John Mayer referred to the video just before a concert. And High School Musical’s Zac Afron mentioned liking “David After Dentist” in a recent interview.

It’s truly unbelievable and surreal. Overall it’s been a positive experience for my nephew and his family. They like that the video makes people laugh. Everyone can use some levity these days. And I appreciate what my brother says: “If David didn’t like this adventure, we wouldn’t be on it.”

But there’s also been some criticism. For me it’s been hard to read or hear negative comments; basically, it hurts my feelings for people to think what they do about my family. Some critics voice genuine concerns, but others are downright mean and cruel (thankfully, little David hasn’t read these comments). I have to remember that getting defensive isn’t the correct response.

I am taking my cues from my brother and sister-in-law. They say that as parents they understand and appreciate people’s concerns, but they have a perspective that others don’t. “We know what is going on in his life—at home, at church and at school,” Tessie says. “He is an A student who cares deeply for his family and who loves the Lord with all his heart. Those are still the priorities in my son’s life.”

I have my concerns and I have voiced them, but I trust David’s parents. They’re smart, cautious and praying for wisdom and direction. They also seek wise, godly counsel from family and close friends about the media requests and have even turned down appearances with big-name talk show hosts because they didn’t have peace. My brother and sister-in-law are first and foremost parents to David and his younger brother, Will. They would never do anything to harm their sons. They didn’t make this happen; they are simply staying open to the opportunities that come their way and know that God is in control.

“He’s the only one who could have worked this out because we never planned this nor intended for it to happen,” Tessie told me. “We are a God-fearing family who want nothing else but God’s will to be done in our lives, and we’re committed to facilitating our sons with all they need to fulfill God’s call on their lives.”

My brother adds to this sentiment: “We believe there is more to this story, but we are taking it one step at a time and letting God reveal what plans He has for us through this. … We are still trying to figure out the overall purpose.”

In reality, their lives haven’t changed much. Yes, they have the occasional media requests, but paparazzi aren’t camped outside their door. They have their priorities in order. When the family was invited to New York for the Today Show, they scheduled their trip so they were back home in time for little David’s flag football game; his dad is also the coach. They know what’s most important.

And the “fame” hasn’t gone to my nephew’s head. He’s just a normal now-8-year-old boy, loving life. He’s actually somewhat shy when people recognize him in public (it does happen, but not too often). His friends at school thought it was funny and it was the topic of conversation for probably a week. Then life returned to normal. And at home, he’s just my nephew wanting to play football, hide-and-seek or video games.

A lot has happened because of this video going viral. But my favorite result is my brother being contacted by a soldier in Iraq. On my brother’s blog, the soldier told him that he and his fellow soldiers had only recently seen the video and it gave them a laugh. If anyone needs a moment to laugh, it’s our soldiers serving our country. I was glad the group enjoyed the video, but I’m even more thrilled that my brother and his family have a chance to send the soldiers a small thank-you for their service (he’s going to send them free T-shirts). So if it took almost 19 million views, some media attention and a few harsh comments for a small group of soldiers to know there are people back home who appreciate them, it’s all been worth it.

I’m still waiting on my free T-shirt though.

 

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Raise Your Praise!

Raise Your Praise!

These are the days that may leave you feeling defeated. You may be wondering when these present trials will end or how can you strengthen your faith for the battle as you wrestle against powers and principalities that come against you, in addition to the challenges...

7 Elements Needed for Revival That Will Usher in Reformation

7 Elements Needed for Revival That Will Usher in Reformation

Read Time: 1 Minute 9 Seconds What will turn the nations around? What will restore the world to sanity? There have been revivals from Old Testament times up through the year 2000. Today we need both a revival and a reformation. Here are 7 elements needed to usher in...

Messianic Rabbi: The Blessing of Esau Brings Freedom

Messianic Rabbi: The Blessing of Esau Brings Freedom

Read Time: 4 Minutes 55 Seconds Growing up in synagogue, I was taught about the heroes of the Bible: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Joshua, David, Solomon and Samson. When I became a believer in Yeshua, the writings of the New Testament new heroes were added to the...

Mario Murillo: An Era of Mass Soul Winning Has Begun

Mario Murillo: An Era of Mass Soul Winning Has Begun

Read Time: 4 Minutes, 27 Seconds From the very first tent stake we drove into California soil, until now, there has only been one dream. And, after two years, that dream came true in Roseville. Roseville is the victory we have yearned for. It confirms that an era of...

God’s Strategy for His End-Times Church

God’s Strategy for His End-Times Church

Read Time: 2 Minutes 23 Seconds In this webinar, Grant Berry discussed the strategy the Lord is releasing for His end-time plans to reform His Ekklesia/church. God is revealing different focuses of this strategy to various parts of the body, especially as it relates...

How You Can Flow in the River of Living Water

How You Can Flow in the River of Living Water

Read Time: 5 Minutes, 2 Seconds A river is a source of life. As it is in the natural, so it is in the spiritual. Jesus told His disciples that if we believe in Him, "rivers of living water" will flow out from within us, from our hearts. "Anyone who believes in me may...

RECENT ARTICLES

Chris Reed Shares Prophetic Word on the Future of China’s Xi Jinping

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEKEaNqZydk Read Time: 1 minute 20 seconds Unprecedented mass protests are unfolding right now across China. The country is seeing the largest pushback in decades,...
Cindy Jacobs Prophesies: Trust That He is There

Cindy Jacobs Prophesies: Trust That He is There

Read Time: 2 Minutes 42 Seconds It’s very interesting how the Holy Spirit will use things that you’re going through to not only prophesy to you, but also to prophesy over the body of Christ. In listening to other people and hearing what’s been coming out of their...

Have We Departed From the  Simplicity of Christ?

Have We Departed From the Simplicity of Christ?

Recently I heard a pastor say the following: "When I was pastoring and saw little fruit, I began to call those with potential to reach others for Christ to our home and to mentor them one on one. That's where massive growth happened in the people." Local pastors and...

Joyce Meyer: Becoming a Prisoner of Hope

Joyce Meyer: Becoming a Prisoner of Hope

Read Time: 3 Minutes 56 Seconds God is good. And He has a good plan for each of our lives. No matter what may be going on right now, God’s plan is unfolding. In the meantime, Romans 12:12 tells us to “be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer,”...

Pin It on Pinterest