November 7, 2005
I smell dead people.
I can smell everything. The beau's medicine-y choice of mouthwash sends me into a tizzy, at times even before he steps into the apartment. I brush twice every morning to erase any trace of socks on my teeth. I occasionally even have to scoop the cat's litter just to go to sleep at night.

But as of late, my neurosis has transcended into obsession. I have noted that the problem has ruined nearly every sports movie with a romantic slant. I could hardly make it through Varsity Blues, waiting for that requisite he's-gonna-make-a-touchdown-in-the-final-seconds ending, only to be topped off (with whipped cream and a cherry) when the sweaty jock approaches his virginal love and makes out hard core on her. The audience cheers, but we all know full well he smells like a paste of Gold Bond and artichokes.

Two weeks ago I went to see Flight Plan at Union Station, and not even the murmurings of the homeless man behind me could distract me from my olfactory musings. Ms. Foster, after a two-hour nap breathing circulated air at 35,000 feet, frantically searches each and every cargo hold and restroom for her young daughter. She eventually returns to the row the two shared, and breathing heavily upon the plane window, reveals in the condensation a heart the young girl drew prior to takeoff from Europe. The music crescendos - finally, proof that the young one is ALIVE! And all I can think is how awful Jodie's breath smells bouncing back off of that plexiglass.

Most of ABC's LOST has been ruined for the very same reason. Kate sensually saddles up next to Jack, and I'm obsessed with what most assuredly must be an overwhelming level of panic-, the Others-, and weeks-sans-proper-hygiene-induced uberstank. Clare entrusts the peanut-butter-producing Charley with her offspring, and ignoring the poignancy of the moment, I obsess instead on the surefire odor combo of his delirium tremems and the sweat caked in his slowly-emerging stubble.

A little known secret is that this neurosis is the primary reason I'm not on the MIR Space Station. The language barrier didn't stop me. I'm pretty sure I could have conquered my fears of both flying and heights. But please consider for one moment the smell that must reside miles above the Earth in a 72.5-sq-ft airtight capsule HOLDING TEN HUMANS FOR FIVE YEARS. That's one hatch I don't care to have opened.

Don't even get me started on those kissing scenes in Shakespeare in Love . . .

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59 Comments:

Blogger Jürgen Nation said...

Krissssss! I'm drunk again. How I love vacations! Janet Reno and I are having Dance Party USA - '05 in da hizzaus edition. Wish you were here!

PS: Janet made Jell-o shots and brought the fixins for blow job shots. Janet, that krazy kat!

Blogger kimmay said...

but their teeth in Shakespeare in Love were bright white. their breath must have smelled good!

Blogger LBseahag said...

funny you should mention that...i watched titanic for the millionth time tonight, and i was creeped out by jack's blue, cracked, frozen lips...

i have an adversion to kissing anyone who doesnt see a dentist...or if you notice they dont own dental floss...

Blogger Melliferous Pants said...

Oh hush! I ate paste of Gold Bond and artichokes for dinner. It was delicious.

Blogger Jeannette said...

Oooh. What about the Amber/Rob romance on Survivor a few seasons back? No soap, toothbrush, razor, shampoo. Somewhere I have a fantasy that does not include a sweaty island, tooth decay, stinky pits and other bits. I say take the million and buy some hygiene appreciation!

Blogger Wrigley1 said...

I can sympathize with you. I think of the same thing when I see some actors kiss. Especially anyone old with anyone young. You know they stink.

By the way I am a wine freak also.

so can you smell the fact that i came home from the gym and haven't showered yet? what? i was too busy reading your blog. it's all your fault.

Blogger playfulinnc said...

And then, add in any knowledge you may have on some stars that don't bathe too much...or the overly drunken ones.

Yeah, I think about that too...but I have had to kiss some pretty stinky ones in my time on stage.

Blogger Bill said...

Oh my. I guess we won't be hooking up anytime soon. Not till I solve this wind problem. Something in my diet has me farting like a locomotive!

Blogger The Zombieslayer said...

Hmm...I've never even considered my olfactory senses when watching a movie or a show. Strange.

Blogger Brookelina said...

Oh oh oh!!! Someone else with an obsession with smell, and not just smell that is in your vicinity - but imagined smells as well!!! I feel so much better - I'm not alone.

I can't watch basketball because I know what these guys smell like after running up and down the court all night. Every time I watch a movie set in Victorian times all I can think about is how they would cover their stench in powder for months at a time since they only bathed once a year. And then they wore the same clothes everyday!! Ugh! I need to go dry heave.

Blogger NewYorkMoments said...

OK...This was great! I needed a laugh this morning!

Blogger Keith said...

Personally I drown my teeth in listerine twice daily to eradicate any stench and I'm also convinced that smells get trapped in my nose. I wish somebody would invent a big Q-tip for nostrils. Am I alone in this craziness?

Blogger Candace said...

When I was pregnant with kid #2, I couldn't walk into a grocery store. I couldn't change my son's diaper (gross enough on it's own, but with enhanced olfactory senses? Forget it.). There were days that I couldn't even be in the same ROOM with my husband, and he's the cleanest person I know.

I still smell things that are above the normal human's range of smell.

And tell me, wherever DID Jodie find the kid? I can't watch movies where children are in danger (heightened sense of parental panic, since the births) but I really want to know!

Anonymous Jorge said...

Can I tell you now that I am paranoid about how our meting went?
I mean, last week I was in a euphoric state, thinking Wow! That was so awesome! She's fun and cute and great to talk to!.

Now it's Did I smell bad when we met? Was my deodorant working? Crap!

We all know that the Bunker in Lost was made for you so the characters could shower.

Blogger Anisa said...

LOL...great post!

i HATE yucky breath. i'm pretty crazy about hygeine, so i hear you on this one for sure!

Anonymous AfromABQ said...

I don't know how they kissed back in the day before toothpaste, soap and sweet smelling shampoo. . .ewwwwww!! All I can think about in movies like "Rob Roy" or "Braveheart," - even "Little House on the Prarie" is how bad they must smell!! Those women in them long, layered dresses, and those men in them stinkin' leather or wool pants. Too nasty! How did they do it??

Anonymous your beau said...

My girlfriend constantly smells of wine and blog.

I can see you now....enjoying "Shakespearin the park".

"Something stinks in Denmark!"

Kris stands up and points,"NO! It's that guy in the 3rd row! He had liverwurst for lunch and washed it down with an apricot Snapple! *ack* UNCLEAN! UNCLEAN!"

Anonymous Jorge said...

The beau is right.

She DOES!

Hmmm....

We need a word that combines drunk with blog.

I vote for Drublogunk.

Blogger missbhavens said...

Gee--I always thought I was sensitive to smells...but I was NEVER sensitive to IMAGINARY media smells! that's a serious gift you've got, there! Bad breath freaks me out, as does the smell of cooking brussel sprouts, which is the very nastiest smell of all time EVER.

Oh, and I cannot be within 10 feet of a caesar salad since starting work on Labor & Delivery. Don't ask.

Blogger Sizzle said...

but in Shakespeare in Love they use that twig thingy to brush their yellowed teeth.

now THAT is hygiene! ;)

Blogger DC Cookie said...

I went on a date once with a guy who had halitosis. His car smelled like his breath. I thought I was going to pass out.

Blogger Heather B. said...

Ooh, sometimes I have the same thoughts when watching movies, it's like ewww I hope they brushed good before getting practically on top of someone. I picture the director saying cut and Halle Berry saying to Billy Bob Thorton, you might want to stock up on some tic tacs. Just gross.

Anonymous Sanora said...

This reminds me of the old Gone with the Wind story which went that part of the reason Vivian Liegh pulled back when Clark Gable bent to kiss her was because of the halitosis produced by his dentures....at least that's the rumor.

In any event, I getcha and yes, odd as it is, it's one of the reasons I don't watch shows like "Lost" (fiction) and "Survivor" (non-fiction, yeah, right) is that I just can't fathom the non-showering community...

Blogger JJ said...

Freshman year, a guy in my dorm refused to shower because he was cultivating a musk that he was sure would attract women. We tried to convince him cologne - or better, rufies - would do the same thing but to no avail.

We threw him in the lake. It was his own fault that he never told us he didn't know how to swim.

Blogger Danielle said...

I totally feel ya sista. I will not eat curry because I used to get so grossed out by the scent of the girl who sat next to me every morning in high school. She smelled like curry and bad perfume, which first thing in the morning, made me want to puke, and ruined curry for me... forever.

Blogger MoDigli said...

all those period flicks definitely do it for me. All I can think of is how they NEVER bathed, just doused themselves with too much perfume, and wore little dead furry creatures to keep the fleas off their own bodies.... ew! ... The stench must have been AWFUL! It's amazing the human race managed to survive that period in history!

Blogger Mel said...

Ok, now I am really self conscious.

I'll be meeting you and Kim next week, and all I will be able to think is: "I hope I don't smell. Did I step in dog shit? Can she smell the gym clothes in my briefcase? Did I brush my teeth twice? When did I last apply Degree?"

Thanks, Kris. Thanks a lot.

Blogger mysterygirl! said...

Hahahahahaha. I love your projections of what these things must smell like, even the ones on TV... classic.

So when Jason and Jessica made out on Laguna last week, do you think it smelled like wine coolers, or Boone's Farm?

Blogger Finn said...

Thank God I'm not the only one who wonders about these things. I don't think I'm on your level—yet. But I thought the exact same thing about Varsity Blues. Eww. Take a shower first, babe.

Blogger JordanBaker said...

I don't obsess about smells, but "historical" films always make me wonder what the female characters did when they were having their periods.

Anonymous Jacynth said...

Do you smell something when someone says, "eww! smell this!". I fall for it every damn time.

Blogger Spinning Girl said...

Wow, I've never heard of a smell obsession.

Blogger Jessica said...

Hmmm, no smell obsession here, but I am highly sensitive to noises. Styrafoam rubbing is the most painful noise on earth to me. My mother thought I was joking when I was a child until I started crying when she picked up some packing material for a new t.v......

Anyway, thanks for another thought provoking (and possibly hygiene enhancing) post!

Blogger MKD said...

#36! Yes!

Why did you have to ruin all of those for me? I care not for what you say, Joseph Fiennes in Shakespeare in Love was HOT. Deal with it or I'll make you smell my armpit after typing all day.

Blogger yournamehere said...

This post reminded me of something that happened about six years ago, so I blogged about it today. You probably shouldn't read it though, Kris.

Blogger Jill said...

Wow, I am never going to look at movies the same way again.

Blogger The Zombie Lama said...

Aren't you glad "Smell-O-Vision" never really made it as a marketing device? Can you imagine what "Survivor" or "Lost" would really smell like? Or how about that show "The world's dirtiest jobs"? Or even "ER"?

Yuck.

Blogger K said...

My nickname is "the bloodhound"... I feeeeeeel your pain. 'nuff said.

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Blogger Megarita said...

This is hilarious and mildly disconcerting. I'm glad you're not anywhere near my apartment with the dead thing in the walls, that's for sure.

Blogger Jürgen Nation said...

Kris, I hadn't showered for six weeks when you met me, and you never said anything or wrinkled your nose!

Just saying.

Anonymous Jorge said...

Jurgen is a smell-ninja.

Blogger PVPeeved said...

When those around me (sometime myself) start to sweat their drinks... That's just nasty, and will start to sober me up in a heartbeat.

When we have a LOST viewing party, I will leave week old sweaty/mildew clothes behind the couch to make the experience more authentic ;)

~PVPeeved

Blogger mrsmogul said...

Hey thanks for ruining Flight Plan's ending! Thats ok, Oh well...I will watch it when it's on TV.

Blogger Jürgen Nation said...

Whore-hey, I'm just kidding. It was 4 weeks.

Blogger NARDAC said...

On the French Survivor, there was this guy, Mohamed, who caused quite a fuss because he gave up the french tradition of bisous (kisses on the two cheeks). He said something quite frank about body and breath smell. I thought is was a beautiful moment of insight into the true horror of those Survivor series. It's a chance at a million dollars which you have to earn by overcoming how crappy, smelly and dirty you can be.

I always imagine that when I meet someone famous they'll smell fantastic. I think being famous must be something about good smell. Otherwise, why do people turn around after they've walked by? Surely not to see the backs of their heads.

Blogger NARDAC said...

and to be comment 50....

Kate took a shower in one of the latest Losts.. Thank goodness somebody knows what to do with technology. You can deal with almost any crisis if you're crisp and clean. I wonder if there's a laundromat on the island too. Washing your clothes in salt water won't make them Gap clean the way Sun's clothes are.

I have a sensitive nose as well and smell is something that bothers me a lot when unpleasant. I feel for you.

;-)

Blogger Dave said...

Once, when I was watching the video for Hollaback Girl, I caught a fleeting whiff of B.O. And then I thought, I bet that's how Gwen Stefani smells right there in her wife beater and toque and her arms swinger hither and thither. For about the next month, every time after that when I saw her on TV, I could swear that I smelled B.O. This is a true story.

Anonymous Jorge said...

Damn.

That time-release BO spray really works!

Blogger Sub Girl said...

kris! i can't smell anything. except the fact that my office smells like onions. but i ate onions for lunch.

Blogger NARDAC said...

Because it's officially past midnight, my time, I thought I'd be the first one to wish you HAPPY BIRTHDAY! From 8 hours in the future to you, the female blogger who makes me laught the most. (Jeremy's the male prize-winner of that distinction, and I don't want to pick). I'm already drunkerooo... oooof, better sleep now. Have an excellent b-day babe.

Anonymous sandra said...

You would hate my walk home from work - there's really no path (almost anywhere in San Francisco, actually) that doesn't involve inhaling the smell of urine. Which I've actually grown to prefer over the "I haven't bathed in 7 years" smell.

Blogger Washington Cube said...

I worked with a man like this, and he made everyone in the office self conscious and uncomfortable the way he would go around sniffing all of the time. He would imagine cigarette smoke constantly. One day a coworker went over to Maine Avenue and brought back steamed spiced shrimp for her lunch. I thought he would die from the olfactory onslaught.

Blogger Marissa said...

Too funny!! Ya know what, I'm like this, too. Not to the same degree, but my olfactory sensories go into overdrive often, too. And if I smell something, the damn smell stays in my nostrils forEVER! This is part of what makes me natious on the subway...

Blogger Kiki said...

The other day my sister and I were watching Herbie: Fully Loaded (I know, I know) and she told me that for some reason ever since the Parent Trap she imagines that Lindsay Lohan has horrible breath.

I agree. If you take a good look at her, it just looks like she would have death breath.

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