Thursday, July 02, 2009

The Downside of Superpowers

The closest thing I have to an actual superpower is my shockingly acute sense of smell. I can pick up (and be overwhelmed by) scents others around me cannot detect at all. This is a dandy thing when the smells are things like the subtle musk perfume of a pine tree or the earthy fragrance of mulch, but on the downside, I can be rendered practically infirm by a nasty funk.

I was out last night hanging posters for an upcoming event (the Gender Blender Splendor event on July 11th) and was regularly assailed by the widest possible cacophony of smells. Some were certainly enjoyable, such as assorted perfumes, the delightful combination of fresh coffee and pastry in Quackenbush's, or the sweet smells of trees and grass, fresh from a rain. I unfortunately also picked up whiffs of stale grease, rotting garbage, urine, feces and dead animal. Part of life I suppose but in these moments I momentarily regret my gift.

I thought I might put together a list of the top 10 worst smells. This is of course MY list. Others may certainly disagree and I'm certain if I get comments on this post, at least one will point out a marauding odor I had not until that moment considered. Until that time, here is my list, in sort-of order.

1. Dead Animals (I would assume humans too but I have not had the misfortune)
2. Halitosis (This is probably the worst for me since I sometimes feel I have to stay in the environment for politeness sake).
3. Feces. Enough said.
4. Rotten Vegetables (I think potatoes might be the worst offenders)
5. Fish, especially shrimp and crawfish. (I know this one is subjective but for me this is horrid)
6. Urine (human seems to be the worst, and male smells worse than female- trust this nose).
7. Garbage (this would encompass the rotten veggies with any other thing that ends up in a dumpster behind a restaurant).
8. Flatulence.
9. Any food left in a cooler and forgotten.
10. Tie: Rotten chicken/ Rotten eggs.

Some might say ammonia, which would also encompass bird feces, cat pee and many other things. I think in some ways ammonia can be our friend- masking even more revolting scents.

Some might notice things that didn't make the list, such as gasoline, skunk smell, body odor... Yeah, those can certainly be horrid but can also fall into a much more subjective list. I actually don't mind the smell of skunk so much and even b.o. can be tollerable in small doses- on the right person.

Have a happy 4th-- and I wish you the delightful fragrances of charcoal, your favorite drink and your favorite person.


At 7:33 PM CDT, Blogger buukfairy said...

Hey there, long time no see! You sound so's wonderful. Speaking of sensitive smell, maybe it's an East Texas thing, because mine is too sensitive. It's so frustrating to be sickened by something no one else notices. Keep having a great summer and I'll talk to you later.


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