11/04/2006

When I am King: Common Scents

When I am King...

Overuse of cologne and perfume will be banned. They just stink too damn much.

What's with the guys that dump buckets of cologne on themselves? Can they not tell that they reek? Or that that they can't smell anything else in the entire environment? Or that people gag and plants wilt as they walk by?

I think that these scents dated from the age where showers and baths were not as easy to come by, and perfume was preferable to BO. But these people must have missed the memo about today's running water and soap.

Over-dosing is a growing problem as people grow older; I think their sense of smell starts to go and they have to really soak their skin to get the same effect in their nostrils as they used to get. (This is somewhat related to the way that I now have to have an IV drip delivering coffee directly into my system since I had developed a tolerance to all lesser measures.) You would think that when they change from using dabs to teaspoons it would be a giveway, but maybe they just assume that the manufacturers are watering down their product.

But this problem is not relegated to older people; many younger people suffer the same fate. Or rather, the rest of us suffer the same fate from younger people, too. There are just some folks that think that they need to bathe in the stuff to get any effect.

I'm particularly bothered by men overusing cologne, but I'm not excusing women; there are women that do the same thing with perfume. But somehow we are conditioned to expect perfume smells, even unnecessarily strong ones, or ones that smell like insect repellent, from women. However, the same sense of injustice, of odor intrusion, of nausea comes into play here; women should not be exempted from this law.

The root of the problem is not using cologne or perfume; used in moderate amounts, that is excusable. The real issue is the overdosing with the stuff, using amounts that cause large crowds to gag, small children to suffocate, and skunks to go into heat. Original plans for my proposed law required an outright ban, arguing that measuring the amount used would be too difficult, and outlawing all usage would be the only approach. But our clever scientists have come up with a system that should make it possible to only outlaw extreme use.

Enforcement for this new law will be easy. Detection and punishment will both be handled by the same mechanism; public places will have small, concealed pilot lights. Anyone using too much perfume or cologne near one of these units will spontaneously combust.

Sometimes extreme measures are called for. It may stink, but the punishment fits the crime.
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