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Friday, December 07, 2007

From the Mouths of Husbands - Marina's Impossible

"Good morning Mr. Colombina. Your mission ... should you choose to accept it ... is to sneak into Colombina's private scented world ... to uncover and deliver top secret information that her readers don't know about her and her perfumes... and might even be surprised to find out. The free (smelling) world depends on you and your team to expose the essence that is ... PST.

Colombina ... AKA Marina ... heads an international network of fragrance worshipers who will stop at nothing to partake in the pleasures of scents. So be careful!

This blog will self destruct in five seconds."

So there I was ... just hanging around ... minding my own business ... when duty called. I had been enjoying a well deserved rest, when I was reminded that it had been ages since I did a guest post. When I say "reminded" I mean nagged as only Colombina can. She becomes 'Marina Impossible.'

The first thing I had to do was assemble the IMF team. I needed a team with the skills and daring to infiltrate Colombina's world ... I needed a team that already had the inside connections and insights to blow the lid off this case. But who? Who could I trust? And perhaps most crucially, I needed to get Colombina out of the house for a few hours so we could snoop around through her things. And hey, if we stumbled upon a Christmas present or two ...well that would be considered acceptable collateral damage.

After much brainstorming (a few beers) ... I realized I needed just one team member .... Little Miss Colombina ...AKA 'Agent Swiper.' Her dossier reads like a Tom Clancy novel. Former KGB operative ... former MI6 infiltrator, able to get into small spaces ... daring, sly, crafty and manipulative with a 'nose' for trouble... and if need be she could cry that her shoes are too tight ...forcing Colombina to vacate the house to the nearest shoe emporium for a few needed hours.

We would be searching for anything incriminating ... a bottle of White Diamonds perhaps ... better yet ... a secret stash of Giorgio! We carefully entered the realm of PST ... Marina's world. And here's what we can report.

The desk where she types this wonderful blog is itself, a tiny perfume counter ...covered with bottles, boxes and these tiny little sample vials that could easily be mistaken for some sort of contraband. I know how everyone (every woman anyway) was annoyed when airlines started preventing you from bringing any liquids in your carry-on ... even perfume. But if you saw these vials, you'd think she was definitely up to something sinister!

Equally fighting for desktop space are her cosmetics, on what once was my desk ...then our desk and now ...I give up ...there's not even room for a single sports magazine! Now I am not just saying this (to get my desk back) but I complained to Colombina once about perhaps putting her cosmetics elsewhere since she doesn't even use them. She informed me that she DOES use them which only further backs my position that if she uses them and I don't notice the difference ...then (being such a 'natural' beauty) she does not need them. I lost that argument (as usual).

Mr. Colombina attempts to type this guest post

And also on HER desk ... no trashy mags ... no Cosmo People National Enquirer ... just these outrageously large magazines ...thicker than a Sears catalogue. Each of these has about 8 pages of articles and 3,000 pages of ads.

Moving into her bedroom. Yes hers! I am more like a lodger there. I can tell all you faithful PST readers that Colombina is ... well not the most 'organized' person in the world. But then again she would have a hard time living up to the standards of her husband ... a self-confessed anal retentive German Virgo with obsessive-compulsive tendencies. She often compares my fastidiousness to "sleeping with the enemy."

I see the strewn clothes and haphazard hazards and realize there is a method to her madness. Well actually just a madness to her madness but she SWEARS she knows where everything is. That being said, you don't want to be around when she CAN'T find something ...accusing all within throwing range of stealing, moving or otherwise relocating the items in question ... all with the wrath of a Naomi Campbell-Russell Crowe love child!

I think PST readers would most be surprised to see how little perfume there is here at the moment. Or in sight anyway. Oh sure she has enough for ten life times but her collection seems to grow and ebb in waves. She can be extremely fickle in all things ... food ... reading genres, and even perfume. Presently her collection is rich in 'classics' with a lot of the fad ones removed once the thrill was gone.

Colombina is by no means a hoarder. But that is not to say she is not sentimental. If shelf space normally reserved for french bottles becomes available is usually filled with pictures of her family. Her taste for wall-mounted prints, paintings and pictures is usually far more tasteful than mine ... though if you saw what hangs on the wall immediately to the left of this (her) computer monitor ... you might not believe it. I'd tell you more. But I'd have to kill you.

Well I hope that's a little peak into Colombina's world. Now let's see how much she censors. Happy Holidays to all. See you in 2008.

What more can I say about Colombina AKA Marina?



Blogger tmp00 said...

A most pleasurable read as always, Mr. Columbina; she is a beauty and we are glad for you both that you found each other.

Of course if you accuse her in public again of wearing Giorgio you may spend 2008 sleeping in the carport...

12:20 AM EST  
Blogger Gaia said...

Loved it, and I'm having a good laugh at that couch jumping picture (and of the thought about Marina hoarding White Diamonds bottles). I should get my long suffering husband to do a guest post. Of course, if he says something too incriminating he'd be exiled not just from my bed but also from my Serge bottles, a threat he wouldn't take lightly...

1:41 AM EST  
Blogger Ducks said...

What an adorable loon you are. I love the incriminating expose post... wonderful!

Did you find any presents?

3:05 AM EST  
Blogger elle said...

I've missed your posts! Loved the dossier photo of Little Miss Agent Swiper. :-) And Marina's environment sounds like it perfectly reflects her creative genius. But now, of course, I'm completely curious as to what hangs to the left of her computer...imagination is running wild, so it would be better to just spill the beans. :-)

6:00 AM EST  
Blogger leopoldo said...

Tell us what's in the picture or I might have to send Agent Fairy over.

6:38 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

Dear Agent Mr C.,
Your cover is blown. You *do* read this blog secretly (natch!). What gave you away was this sentence: "Presently her collection is rich in 'classics' with a lot of the fad ones removed once the thrill was gone." Although you would know a classic perfume when you see it, I grant you that, no way would you be aware of the fact that I removed "the fad ones", not without reading my posts on the subject. Busted!

Also, I believe no one would be at all surprised to learn what's in the picture :-)

Great post, please do another one soon.

7:54 AM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

PS. This I am putting on my resume:

"Heads an international network of fragrance worshipers who will stop at nothing to partake in the pleasures of scents."

7:55 AM EST  
Blogger lilybp said...

Wonderful! I am also married to an anal-retentive Virgo--but somehow that has not affected his habits re: picking up clothes, etc. He does, however, insist on a spotless kitchen (he's the cook in our house).

8:12 AM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...

Hey Tom!

The Giorgio comment was as far as I dare push it, lest she go medieval on me and then start a REAL cold war.

But I was surprised that she only censored one sentence.

You know, if you stopped and calculated the odds of she and I "finding each other" ... me born more than just a few years before her in Philadelphia, USA ... she born in a closed Russian city in the (now former) Soviet Union ... to one day meet in Oxford, UK ...well now that is starting to sound like a mission impossible.


9:22 AM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...


Always interesting to see how ALL women refer to is as "my" bed ... "my" bedroom.

From the day a couple moves into a home ... the woman and her things ...just spread ...perhaps with the unnoticeable pace of a continental drift ...until ... alas, one day the man looks up and decides ... well it's either the basement or the garage for me.

“Serge Bottles”? Qu’est-ce que c’est?


9:31 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you, Mr. Colombina, for a hilarious post! My DH (who is home today) heard me laughing so many times that he said, "well, okay, just read it to me!" But I made him log onto his own computer so that we could laugh together. :-)
I think that bit about the poster is a red herring to throw us all off the trail. What else could it be but the ad for the movie "Perfume"?

And an aside to Colombina, my sympathies for living with a paragon of rational organization. My DH has only his ascendant in Virgo, and his motto for life is "let's finish working first." :-D

9:35 AM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...

Hey there Mighty Ducks!

Good question.

No presents ... though Colombina is a list person you see.

Prefers to shop for presents from one ... and insists to be shopped for from one etched in stone.


(or if not - at least keep the receipts).

So Christmas morning surprises are more in the smaller things but I didn't even have time to look for those.


9:35 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How fun! I'd want to have Agent Swiper on my side, too.

I'm guessing the mysterious picture by the monitor is from the M7 ad?


9:47 AM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...


Thanks for you comment!

What hangs to the left of the computer?

HERE IS A CLUE: "Ash Nazg Durbatuluk, Ash Nazg Gimbatul, Ash Nazg Thrakatuluk, Agh Burzum-ishi Krimpatul."

I invite all readers to offer their guesses. Perhaps I shall give more clues.

And I (or perhaps Colombina if she wishes to play along) will give you the old “getting warmer / getting colder” assistance.

By the way ... Marina's "creative genius" while undeniable, is not without its (many) quirks, idiosyncrasies and eccentricities.

In fairness, most (not all) are endearing and make me appreciate what a unique and special lady I have the fortune of sharing my life with.

But the remaining few gnaw an my psyche, mocking my inner sense of well being and mine own perception of what should be cosmic order, with the effectiveness of Guantanamo torture techniques

But you know what? Me complaining about HER quirks would be like the cast of "River Dance" all living together and practicing all day long in an apartment ... and then THEY complain about the noisy neighbours downstairs.

In that respect ... your creative genius is also ... a Saint!


10:26 AM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...


Before you unleash Agent Fairy ...

Here's another clue for you all:

"It'll be spring soon. And the orchards will be in blossom. And the birds will be nesting in the hazel thicket. And they'll be sowing the summer barley in the lower fields... and eating the first of the strawberries with cream. Do you remember the taste of strawberries?"


11:06 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Mr C for a lovely post & for the voyeuristic window. Well done :) I'm having a hell day & can't absorb it all, looking fwd to reading at leisure later.

11:07 AM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


12:23 PM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...


I won’t deny I read your blog and more often than you previously suspected.

Sure, a lot (most) of the time I haven’t a clue what you’re banging on about … and I have more interest in the migratory habits of the South American black-bellied whistling duck (dendrocygna autumnalis) … but YOU write it and I am proud of you.

I can recognise clever verse and witty prose when I see it …even if it whimsically deals with something so foreign to my gray matter as to actually hurt my cranium reading it.

However, it is a mere coincidence that I noticed you’ve removed the fad perfumes.

Keep in mind that your perfume hutch is in front of (and blocks) the wall-mounted thermostat.

I have to CAREFULLY move that large monstrosity every time I adjust the heating. I do so with the caution to not shake, rattle or otherwise knock over your precious’ [CLUE] collection.

So naturally I noticed there are fewer bottle on display. Seeing the likes of Chanel and others … I merely assumed the ones no longer present were of the fad variety.


12:29 PM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...


I too am (mostly) the house cook, maid and chief bottle washer.

The number of civilized married men who take charge of keeping the household orderly is probably far greater than urban myths and women’s magazines would like to admit.

The 21st century male head-of-household [domesticatus wimpus] takes pride in his lair despite the clichés to the contrary.

And to put it more bluntly … the 21st century woman seems to be growingly (and alarmingly) in touch with her "inner Oscar Madison".


12:41 PM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...

Hi Anne,

I often thought “Red Herring” would be a good name for a perfume. But what do I know?

If memory serves … Colombina was not impressed with the film “Perfume”.

OK: Here is another clue as to what hangs upon the wall.

(And no ... it's not 99 bottles of beer)

A fan of … and expert in … Mythology … Colombina might fancy herself a Greek goddess.

Whilst the goddess part is accurate to her beauty, the first part contains one too many “R”s.

Glad you and your DH enjoyed the post. Is there anything better than sharing a laugh with your spouse? (Well yes of course there’s THAT … and typically THAT should not include laugher …but …)

From Chaos, let there be order.

12:57 PM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...


Perhaps it is not so much the day you're having as it is trying to make sense of my "all over the shop" style.

I hope your day gets better.

You're welcome for the voyeuristic view. And thanks to Colombina for allowing me to present her 'exhibitionist' side.

I hope I didn't present her too much as a MAD woman.

She IS ... mad as a hatter in fact ...just hope I didn't present it too much that way.


1:06 PM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...

Hi Denise.

Say hello to DeNephew for me ... ha ha ha.

Glad you enjoyed.


1:08 PM EST  
Blogger lilybp said...

Lord of the Rings!!! Inscription on the ring!! *showing her inner nerdiness*

And you are right: I have NO problem getting in touch with my inner Oscar M.

1:38 PM EST  
Blogger lilybp said...

Ok, just saw the second clue--Samwise. So, then, a poster from The Fellowship of the Ring?

1:40 PM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...


Getting warmer.


1:44 PM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...


You MIGHT be even a bigger nerd than Colombina! She did not recognize the ring inscription.

And for the record I did NOT know it off the top of my head. I am just a googling fool.

However, if she looked hard enough (through that chaos that is her world) Colombina actually has a ring (she will say "THE" ring) with that inscription on it!


1:47 PM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...


You didn't LOSE the ring did you? You remember the chaos that happened LAST time you lost it!


1:48 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

Yes, I have. I won't make a good ring-bearer.

1:50 PM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...

Colombina, Daughter of Fiodoron ... You Fool of a Took!

You LOST the RING????

I can see the fires of Mordor blazing.

Remember ...

The Blood of Numenor is all but spent, its pride and dignity forgotten. It is because of women the Ring survives.

I was there, Colomniadriel. I was there three thousand years ago. I was there the day the strength of women failed.


2:17 PM EST  
Blogger Marina said...

Colomniadriel Daughter of Fiodoron? That's it. I am renaming myself into this.

2:23 PM EST  
Blogger lilybp said...

Perhaps she swapped it for a bottle of Diorama (invaluable in its own right). Love the new name!

3:04 PM EST  
Blogger Unknown said...

Boy, sounds like things have changed since my visit. ;) You mean there's no two-shelved shrine in sight? I sure miss hanging out with you guys.

7:14 PM EST  
Blogger Ducks said...

Oh! How tickled I am with myself to have caught onto what it was before I finished reading the comments... does that make me a goddess, too? :)

You folks are wonderful. What fun you are.

8:48 PM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love it! Thank you from behind a pile of magazines.....going through the ads with pleasure, I have to admit.

4:36 AM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...


Lord of the Diorama? Doesn't quite have the same RING to it.


11:46 AM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...

Hi Ina,

Days before your visit ... Hurricane Colombina BLEW threw our home and she was a whirlwind of tidying up.

I used to call my mother a hypocrite for doing the same thing.

"It's ok for us to live in disorder, disarray and disaster but mustn't let company think we do."

Ina, I am surprised you did not notice what is on the wall to the left of Colombina's (formerly mine, formerly our) computer.

For those on the LOTR track ...Bravo!

It is in fact a MAP of Middle Earth.

Colombina oft struggles with geography -specifically US geography. I suspect it might be because she has maps of fictitious places on the wall, whilst the map of the USA I gave her, sits folded SOMEWHERE in the mess, piles and clutter.

The solution seems to be to move to a bigger place ...which is in the works. But I give it about three weeks once in ...until it just means more space for MORE clutter.

Come visit again Ina ...SOON ...the house needs straightening again!


11:54 AM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...


Well done!

Us? Fun? I suppose in our own contrast-of-worlds, gender-gap-bridging, grasp-for-the-humour-in-the-absurd style, we just might be.

All the best,

11:58 AM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...

Hi Andy,

Always a pleasure to hear from you!

I am reminded of my days of studying journalism at Uni ... and in an 'Advertising 101' course ...realizing that an acronym of ADS ... is "Sad".

Not that there aren't some great ads in ALL fields of interest ...just said they not only does perfume (like ALL big business) advertise to us ...but they get US to pay for it.

Be well!

12:02 PM EST  
Blogger NewKidOnTheBlog said...

Colombina ...

You can change your name to that if you wish.

But then I will change my name to Bono Friggens - Friggens being an old family name of my ancestors.

Sort of Tolkien meets U2?

Perhaps I should aim higher than a name sounding like a mere Shire dweller ... but its a force of hobbit.

Besides ... we hobbits are tricksy!


12:07 PM EST  
Blogger Victor Bravo Monchego, Jr said...

I'm on it. At least until the retainer runs out.

1:47 PM EST  
Blogger elle said...

Colomniadriel Daughter of Fiodoron,
What a brilliant map to have by your computer! Much better than dull "real world" maps.
Bono Friggens,
Your clues were as fun to read as the post. Look forward to your next post here!

10:17 PM EST  

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