Bad Perfume: Play By Play

A few days ago, I went to get my usual work day breakfast. I held the door for a woman coming in after me and she punished me with her perfume. It was horrible. Thru the miracle of Twitter I was able to document the moment.

Since then, I’ve decided to take on that moment from a few different angles. Today, a television sports play-by-play view of me battling the most horrid smell I’ve encountered on a living person.

Jim: It’s a warm morning here outside the bagel shop, and here comes Omawarisan, just like every other morning.

Ken: Oma is the picture of consistency, Jim. Speaking of every morning, this is the morning he goes over 400 work mornings in a row ordering the same thing for breakfast.

Hall of Famer, Cal Ripken at bat, Aug 2000

Cal Ripken at bat. Some call him the Omawarisan of baseball. (Photo credit: dbking)

Jim: Inspiring! He is the Cal Ripken of breakfast. Pretzel bagel with cream cheese. You’d think he’d be bored by now.

Ken: Superstition trumps boredom. It looks like our boy is out of the car.

Jim: Yes he is, he’s headed for the door. He’s opening it…and stepped aside! Omawarisan stepped aside to let a woman pass thru the door as he held it open! Wow, his parents raised only gentlemen.

Ken: You haven’t met his brother, have you Jim? That guy is a caveman. Oma, great form there leaving plenty of room when he stepped aside.

Jim: Wait, something is wrong. Oma’s head snapped back. I didn’t see what happened. Did she punch him? That looked awful.

Ken: I’m watching it on replay. She never touched him, but Oma’s head snapped back like he took a punch from Muhammad Ali. He grabbed his face too.

Jim: I’m getting word from our reporter in the store that this female customer seems to have doused herself in some sort of perfume this morning. Lisa, what can you tell us?

(sounds of woman coughing)

Jim: Right, we’ll get back to Lisa when she feels better. Kenny, you picked something up on the replay. Tell us about it.

Ken: Jim, if you watch right here, it looks like Omawarisan took two deep breaths and charged on in…right there! See it? Say what you want about that guy, but nothing stands between him and breakfast.

Jim: And here he comes, back out the door in record time, breakfast in hand! What a play! It looks like Lisa’s caught Oma in the parking lot for an interview. Lisa?

Lisa: Omawarisan, it got horrific in there, was it perfume?

Oma: It was, but Christ that was awful. I think she was swimming in it before she came over.

Lisa: What was the scent? Could you tell?

Demonstrations and riots, Paris, France (place...

Tear gas, more pleasant.(Photograph- Mikael Marguerie, see Flickr file)

Oma: I don’t know. I just know that I enjoyed being tear gassed more than that. Her perfume beat me up.

Lisa: Last question, how did you get in and out so quickly?

Oma: The folks behind the counter saw me pull in the lot and started my order. it was ready when I got in. I never stopped moving.

Lisa: There you have it, Omawarisan is back in the game, breakfast in hand. I think he’ll be fine once the chemical burns to his sinuses heal.

Jim: Nice work, Lisa. We’ll all be back tomorrow to cover Omawarisan’s breakfast. Let’s go back to our New York studio for the post-breakfast show. Tom…?

Next up in the Bad Perfume Series, a discussion of the scent, wine review style.


37 Comments on “Bad Perfume: Play By Play”

  1. For your next career, you might consider being one of those scent-sniffers scientists use. First the guy at the pizza place, then tuna-guy, and now this.

    I’d love to stay and chat, but I’m off to update my notes for the unauthorized biography. I thought it was cranberry bagel.

  2. Snoring Dog Studio says:

    There oughta be a law. Well, at least you weren’t trapped on an elevator with her. We’ve got perfume-soaked ladies who also smoke to deal with where I work. I hate wearing the gas mask cuz it wrecks the mascara, but what’s a breather to do? Anyway, I guess with service like you get at the bagel shop, you could hold your breath from car-to-counter-to-car and avoid it quite easily. Except that the perfume gets into the fabric of your clothes.

    • omawarisan says:

      Ha ha ha…a breather.

      Yeah, elevators are bad with them. When I get on with one, she always gets off, leaves me alone in the car. I go up one floor, someone else gets on and smells the residue. I want to grab them and say “that’s not my smell! That’s not my smell!”.

      • Snoring Dog Studio says:

        I know! I feel the same way about the cig smoke! AND just like leaving a stinky bathroom that isn’t because of what you’ve left behind.

        • Laura says:

          I used to work with one of those perfume-and-smoke ladies. The elevator was basically uninhabitable for ten minutes or so after she’d been on it. Fortunately, everyone knew who she was, so there was no danger of someone thinking it was your smell.

          But it’s not just women. I also used to work (at a different job) with a man who apparently doused himself with cologne every morning.

          • Snoring Dog Studio says:

            Oh, yeah, Laura – we’ve got one of him in a cube across from mine. He comes in wearing his polo shirt with the collar up and soaked in something that smells like room deodorizer.

    • List of X says:

      They douse themselves in perfume and smoke? That’s just as dangerous as smoking at a gas station.

  3. I have a pop tart everyday for breakfast.

  4. This would be funny if I hadn’t had similar experiences myself. Oh the horror! You are a brave man Oma. For the record bad taste in toxic waste applied directly to the body is not gender specific. I have had a few men’s aftershaves knock me on my butt as well.

  5. Katie says:

    I may have to unfollow you, because I was just thinking about writing about bad perfume/cologne the other day. Beyond the fear I don’t want people to think I’m a plagiarist, I’m worried you’ve managed to do some WordPress mind meld.

    • omawarisan says:

      Mind meld? Nah…

      You’re at work, but looking at your blog. A woman on the train had two shopping bags, one of them kept hitting you on the leg. God, it’s only 8:30, I want to go to lunch…


  6. It was nice to see you this morning, too. *ahem*

  7. Debbie says:

    That reminds me of those perfume ladies in department stores who ambush you as you’re walking through and “spritz” you with whatever they’re pushing that week. Oh, the horrors! Did they never stop to think you might not want to be doused? Perhaps you’re allergic. Perhaps their scent doesn’t go with the one you put on earlier. Sorry you had to endure that!

  8. Blogdramedy says:

    “Your sensibility to scents is classic.”

    — Jane Austen, discussing possible titles with her editor over breakfast at the London Bagel Factory

  9. Tina Steele says:

    I am so with you on this, dude. What is up with people who wear too much perfume/cologne? For whose benefit is this? It’s like traveling with your own personal herald who walks ten feet ahead of you and slaps everyone in the face to let them know you’re coming. Not cool.

    • omawarisan says:


      It is very much like that, but the herald also stays behind and slaps people for ten minutes after you leave. Those people don’t even get to say hey.

  10. lbwoodgate says:

    Laugh out loud funny Oma. And hey! You may have a second career in radio play-by-play calls.

    • omawarisan says:

      I would love to do color for one baseball game. One, or maybe a season. Enough to establish the credibility of people who never made it past little league.

  11. pryan51 says:

    I feel your pain – and love your writing! I’ve been knocked senseless out in the open on a breezy day by someone bathed in perfume. It’s horrible indoors, but outside?

  12. We Found Him Captain! says:

    For breakfast I usually have a bowl of broken up pretzel sticks with goat milk poured over it.

  13. What the hell were you doing in California at my mom’s best friend’s house and why didn’t you call? We have a TERRIFIC bagel shop here. Several, in fact.

  14. Glad you survived the assault. But I’m worried about the bagel shop. The residual vapours locked in there must be toxic. A smoker setting foot inside could blow up the whole building.

  15. Love. And seriously. Enough with the perfume, people. We all have to share elevators and trains and offices.

  16. […] Bad Perfume: Play By Play ( […]

  17. […] we use the bagel shop situation I wrote about earlier as an example of how the personal space solution would work. Let’s walk through it from the […]

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