Friday, February 08, 2008


Dressing in the Dark

Or, Perfume Mistakes: the pay-back of a perfume piggy.

I like perfume, and I send reviews into the Lovely Marina at PerfumeSmellinThings where she kindly publishes my petty squabblings. One of the things about this little hobby is that unless you have been the recent recipient of a large Lotto winning, it can be expensive to buy full bottles of stuff. (I am apparently one of the few bloggers out there not rolling in swag) This is where decanters come in. Decanters are lovely people like Lisa, Diane and Patty of the Perfumed Court or Nancy of Fishbone Fragrances or even places like LuckyScent who will for a fee send you a smidge of that hard-to-find, only available in New Guinea on alternate Thursdays, costs-more-than-cocaine scent that one just has to try to be on the bleeding edge of smelly cool. You can get a small vial with a spray attachment for a few bucks and decide whether you want to jump through the hoops necessary (usually meaning straining credit ratings and friendships) to achieve, say a bell jar of Serge Lutens Muscs Kublai Khan. I even bought some empty vials from them; you can safely take a couple of scents with you rather than having someone from the TSA decide that Flowerbomb is more than just a cute name and decide that a full-body cavity search is in your future.

Having written about these scents for well over a year I have become cyber-friends with several people and have met a few of them. One of them, Gaia, of The Non Blonde fame was kind enough to include me in on Andy Tauer's "Bottle Journey" for his as yet unreleased Hyacinth and Mechanic. Being of low morals I thought that before I sent it off to the next person that I would spray a little into one of those little vials. I told myself this was not theft mind you; I wanted to get the bottle off to the nest person posthaste and yet I wanted to savor the beauty of the scent and write a thoughtful, fully rounded account of it for the edification of the general public. In no way was this just a random act of piggishness on my part, oh no.

Not at all.

In any case, last night I was randomly looking through the vials in the bowl on my dresser, trying to cull out ones that were nearly empty or unused. I ran across a decant of the wholly wonderful Mandarine Mandarin and reminded myself that when the exchange rate is a little less horrific I might have to actually buy a bottle of this yummy incensey orange wonder. Then I put it down on the table. I picked up an identical, unmarked vial and sniffed; I remembered that I, wholly in the interest of science mind you, had stolen, er, liberated, um, ...borrowed a smidgen of Tauer's heady hyacinth delight. Then I put it down on the table.

You can see where this is going, right?

Next morning I am in my usual rush of shower, shave and split. Last thing I do before I leave is grab something from the bowl of decants, pull my shirt collar open and give a good spritz. I happily grabbed the vial and gave a goodly dose of.. ooops! Ten seconds to run to the bathroom and try to blot up some of the admittedly gorgeous but not exactly work friendly (or for that matter terribly butch) juice, cursing myself for being in a hurry and for wasting a perfume that perhaps might never see the light of even the shelves at LuckyScent.

So there you have it, Karmas subtle payback for a minor crime. I can only hope that if Andy reads this he can forgive my piggishness. I sit typing in my hyacinth cloud: gorgeous, penitent.

Image: Colorado State University

2 comments:

Colombina (Marina) said...

"Only available in New Guinea on alternate Thursdays, costs-more-than-cocaine scent" :-)) Love that.

Billy D said...

Are you sure you're not Jewish?

Just had to say I sympathize with the poor perfumista existence. I've recently discovered that the Serge Lutens non-exports are, on the average, 100 times better (more interesting, longer lasting) than the ones I can get at Barneys. Le sigh.