On a day like today, when it’s windy and blustery and freaky outside, I like to think about people.
You know, because the lack of desire to confront the elements drives me further indoors and makes me question my own humanity– or something like that.
I think of things like how, even if people think they don’t smell, they most certainly have a particular scent which permeates and saturates the air when someone hangs out in a room for a long time. Sometimes people’s scents are so strong you can be bowled over just by entering a person’s house –so full of humanity and of errant pheromones is the air. Even in an open place, like a ballpark, reminders of everyone’s scent lurk everywhere– from the old seats to the bathroom and every time an overly cologned individual attacks our nose, the smell is there. I’m sure that those lucky people who get to sit close to the dugouts get to smell the players’ scents as well– I’m not sure if this is a plus. Come to think of it, I am just reminded of luxurious homes in the California coast I like to call home, and how everyone has a hearty chuckle over the fact that the more beachfront-y the house is, the more acrid and rancid the low tide scent they have to endure. Ah, scent: the great equalizer.
Scent is a wonderful thing.Even in its most dastardly incarnations– like the hot and humid vapors of rotting meat or the plebeian lowing of the fart– scent is something that transcends its own reality. We remember in scents. We bathe in scents. We eat by scent (ever tried to enjoy a meal while stuffed up? Oh-so-not the same…)
Smell is evocative, repulsive, and strange: it’s something we can’t quite explain, quantify, parse, or relay to others. And every person’s scent is unique; no one smells like anyone else, nor can anyone wear the same perfume the same way. Body temperature alone distorts the scent, and that is just one variable in a long series of hormonal chain reactions going on in your pulse points the moment you decide to dab on a fragrance.
I ordered some lovely loot from the Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab and which I’ll hopefully get very soon, and one of the fun things of the site is the scent evaluations from the LJ community who’s sampled and purchased the perfumes.
Monsieur Meow, recently arrived, asks me what I’m blogging about.
"Um, scent?" I hesitantly offer. He’s a guy and I blog about many a fluffy not-interesting-to-him thing.
"Should you be… shouldn’t you…" he stammers on, which is really rather unlike him. He is not one to mince words.
And then I remember one of the first things our of his lips upon returning home (enveloped in his sweaty, I-just-ran-from-work scent) was the horror at VA Tech today. He wonders what people might think when they see that on this epic, horrible day his wife was off in her little solipsistic corner of the blogosphere talking about buying perfume.
What can I say? I’m still dumbfounded. Part of me doesn’t want to imagine my college experience –redwood and patchouli scented– like these poor kids will remember theirs. Part of me doesn’t even want to think of the smell of gunpowder or death.
There are times when there is not much left to think– although Columbine on that fateful April eight years ago comes to mind. I don’t want to think about this, because I don’t want it to be true. But it is.
Sometimes you want to shut out the world and stay in your own room, until you can smell your own smell.