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Commentary : Nose Knows When You're Reading Magazines

July 20, 1986|SHARON WHITLEY | Sharon Whitley is a free-lance writer who lives in San Diego. and

"What is that wonderful fragrance you're wearing?" my date asked as we sat on my living room sofa munching chips.

At first I was flattered that he had noticed, until I realized that I hadn't sprayed any cologne or dabbed on any perfume.

Then he leaned over and picked up San Diego Magazine from the coffee table. He flipped through a few pages and immediately held the magazine up to his nose and sniffed. "Ah! That's it!" he exclaimed, smiling.

The advertising insert fluttered out, and a whiff of Giorgio filled the room.

I am getting overwhelmed with all these fragrance cards. I have them in most every magazine I subscribe to, from California to Bon Appetit. I get them in my Saks Fifth Avenue and Nordstrom bills. (I'm still more overwhelmed by my current balance than the aroma.)

What is someone supposed to do with all these fragrance cards? They smell so good that usually I am momentarily distracted while I inhale the latest scent--supposedly the one "everyone who's anyone" must have.

I hate to throw them out. I have put them in my underwear drawer until the different aromas end up canceling one another out.

If I were a pen pal with someone romantic, I suppose I could rub some fragrance on the letters to scent them. Somehow it seems too wasteful to simply toss them into the garbage.

And what do people do if they're allergic to all these fragrances?

It used to be that glancing through a magazine was a rather leisurely, routine event. But now when receiving a packet of mail, before I even open a letter from Grandmother, I am bombarded with a sexy, romantic aroma and am forced to wildly tear through the magazine to find out what kind it is. It distracts me from even reading the cover story or letters to the editor. Into the lingerie drawer the card is tossed, to join all the others.

I have to admit that I finally did break down and purchase one of these advertised fragrances--but then I ended up smelling just like all the other women who read Cosmopolitan.

Where will all this end?

All I can say is, thank goodness ZooNooz doesn't include fragrance cards!

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