If this piece reeks, blame aromatherapy.
Specifically, you should complain to my wife. She's the one who bought this bottle of Focus Oil, which its New Zealand maker says is a blend of bergamot, lemon and cinnamon that should "promote clarity of thought."
The label also denotes the essential oil mix is "'energising.'" Please notice the manufacturer uses a Kiwi-fied spelling to show authenticity of the product's origin. It also puts the word in quotation marks to indicate its marketing team either is trying to be folksy or is letting you in on the joke.
Therefore, in the name of science and desperation to finish this post, I'm huffing these heady vapors like … uh … like … um -- (SNORRRRRRRRRRT … ahhh) -- like Tommy Chong at a marijuana farm brushfire.
Whoa. Duuuuuude! You see that?
Filling our home with scents other than Windex (the cleaning people), spilled beer (me) and the funk of the unwashed (the kids) falls squarely on my wife. The origins of her relentless burning of scented candles and warming bowls of liquefied salad seasons remain mysterious, though I can offer three guesses:
- Her first whiff of our Labrador retriever fresh from the rain
- An attempt to delay the changing one of the kids' diapers until I showed up
- Five-bean chili night
Whatever. All I know is nowadays the rest of us have to live with the stench.
Yes, I said stench.
The occasional hit of lavender at the spa, in a bubble bath or on a laced-trimmed silken negligee as it mingles with a warm summer breeze rising with the musky essence of her … umm … uh … wait … (SNEEEEENX SNORT SNORRRRRRT … brrrbrrrbrrr) -- is heavenly.
But most every weekend, My Love pours another vial of Lavendula phewitreeksalotis or something into a porcelain cup on the kitchen counter and shoves a lit tea candle under it to smolder. For 16 hours straight.
When the wind's right and the windows are open, our neighbors must think we were running a renegade potpourri lab out of our house. The overwhelming fumes makes a guy want to head outdoors for fresh-air activities like picking up a week's worth of doggie doo.
Hold the phone.
That sneaky woman o’ mine!
I'm not saying there isn't any sense in scents. Smell gives us the ability to taste beyond the tongue's basics of sweet, sour, bitter, salty and the all-powerful savory (think: grillllled meeeeat). Studies have shown scents to be a more powerful memory trigger than sight or sound. And no one can ignore several findings over the years by the Smell & Taste Treatment and Research Foundation in Chicago that nothing gets a man's blood flowing -- you know, down there -- like the universally sexy, sensual aroma of pumpkin pie, doughnuts and licorice. (Obviously, Coco Chanel and Donna Karan aced marketing in school but flunked chemistry.)
Face it, too much of even a good smell can be bad thing. For example, back when I worked for a national homebuilder during the boom years, our salespeople would run a bread maker or a miniature cookie oven in the model homes to create a cozy, inviting atmosphere that would entice buyers. Look where that got us.
Home mortgage crisis!
Wall Street meltdown!
Unemployed communications professionals overusing exclamation points!
Hold it. Do you smell that?
It smells like … (SNUKUKUKUKX sniff sniff SNIIIIIICKERS) "the end."