Bad Perfume: The SolutionPosted: August 19, 2013
I’ve written extensively, or perhaps twice, about an experience I had with a bad perfume. Because I don’t like when folks point out problems but never help with a solution, I will provide a simple and effective way to eradicate the issue of people who bathe themselves in scent.
My solution is simple and non-violent. There will be no need for legislation or protest marches. The problem demands unified action by all those affected by strong perfumes and aftershave.
The Sphere Of Scent
As I thought about this problem, the concept of the sphere of scent came to me. People who douse themselves in fragrances create a space around their bodies that is full of their particular aroma. Those spheres reach us, typically 8-10 feet before the body generating them does. Being enveloped in the scent sphere of a stranger is as much an invasion of personal space as having them come up and stand belly to belly with you.
We all know people who stand too close to us. And the reaction to such those who invade our personal space is universal. We back up to reestablish out personal space and our comfort. If being overwhelmed by someone’s perfume or aftershave cloud is also an invasion of personal space, shouldn’t our reaction be the same? I believe it should.
So i call upon the vast Blurt audience to fight back in the same way that we fight back against space invaders. At the moment you detect someone with a scent sphere, back up. Back away and maintain a distance equal to the space that was between you when you first smelled that person.
I promised you simple and non-violent. That is what I’m giving you. Now, let’s move on and consider the consequences of what I’m asking you to do.
Suppose 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 point of view of the woman who was inside her scent sphere that morning…
As she approaches the front door of the bagel shop, she sees a dashing middle-aged man. He is holding the door for her because of his top-notch upbringing. She smiles her thanks and starts toward the open portal. As she does, the handsome gentleman releases the door and backs ten feet away. The door closes and she must open it herself.
Our perfume bather enters the shop. Some diners are pinned to the wall by her scent. As she approaches the counter, the order taker backs up ten feet and calls out “may I help you?” Her order is lox and bagel, but the order taker says, “I’m sorry ma’am, I can’t enter your order because I can’t reach the key pad from here.”
The reaction is the same at the register. She wants to pay, but the cashier is ten feet from his machine and can’t ring up the total. Agitated that she can’t pay for the bagel, then realizing that the order was never put in, she stomps out of the store.
She has similar experiences at the dry cleaner and in her morning meeting. Everyone backs up ten feet. Our scented invader gradually realizes what is happening and resolves to think before dipping her ladle into the perfume barrel the next morning.
The only way this will solve our problem is if we all pledge to follow it. Step back, my friends. Step back and regain your personal space. Step back and get some fresh air.
Step back and teach a lesson.
- Bad Perfume: Wine Review Style (blurtblog.net)