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Thursday, May 01, 2014

A Semi-Rerun and a Minor Whinge

By Tom

First off, it's hot. We've gotten into a Santa Ana cycle this week, For those of you who have never lived in Southern California, the Santa Ana winds (otherwise known as an off-shore flow are hot, dry winds that come down from the desert into the basin. They can down trees, power lines and my neighbors DirecTV dish. They also can exacerbate fires, and there are several going on right now. Raymond Chandler wrote of them in the story Red Wind thusly:
"There was a desert wind blowing that night. It was one of those hot dry Santa Anas that come down through the mountain passes and curl your hair and make your nerves jump and your skin itch. On nights like that every booze party ends in a fight. Meek little wives feel the edge of the carving knife and study their husbands' necks. Anything can happen. You can even get a full glass of beer at a cocktail lounge."
I happen to not mind them, since I grew up in New England where we'll take that 90's weather and add in sopping humidity that will stick around all night. But it did make me think about what scent I should wear. Actually if I was stuck on a frozen steppe about to be devoured by wild dogs part of me would be wondering what I should be wearing scent-wise, but I digress..

I came across the bottle of French Lover I bought back in the day when I was flush and gave myself a healthy spritz. Back in 2007 I wrote:
"This has been compared to Guerlain Derby and it does make that same slashingly chic statement. On me the angelica takes a backseat to the vetiver: and what a vetiver! Incredibly full, it's supplanted with woods and incense and not a little musk. It also reminds me a bit of something else- somewhat as if Le Labo Vetiver and Guerlain Habit Rouge had a love child: It has the Le Laboish austere smokiness in its vetiver, but it has the swagger (the only way I can think of to put it) of Habit Rouge. Wearing it today maundering about in my paint-spattered t-shirt and old jeans, I kept getting marvelous little whiffs of it and felt distinctly underdressed. I also passed two people who visibly and enjoyably sniffed and then looked at over at unshaven me and visibly thought "Can't be him". This is the scent I would wear into a meeting with the CEO, a date with the person I wanted to marry or perhaps when being sentenced: it has a rock-ribbed patrician quality to it that's quite wonderful. Needless to say, I logged onto the Malle website and picked up a (small) bottle right away, especially since it will be renamed Bois d'Orage in the states, since it is felt that 'French Lover' would not sell as well. Well "Thunder Wood" sounds like a porn star, and I like the original name."
I still feel the same way. It's still that good, and I usually dislike scents that have anything with Angelica in them. I still like the name "French Lover" better too, and am glad I got a bottle shipped from Europe back in the day, I'm bot glad that 100ML bottles are now $250 at Barney's. But I may have to try the body wash at $75.

What do you wear when the heat is on?

My tester was from my personally purchased bottle. 

Image: Barney's.



Blogger Lara said...

What a lovely blog post to welcome yet another hot, humid day in Central Florida. We'd be grateful for the Santa Ana's and it's only the beginning of May. So I get by with Tauer's Reverie au Jardin, Dior Escale a Pondichery and the vintage Chanel 5 and 19 EDC's that lucked into. The colognes especially help beat back the heat without leaving a trail of silage behind them. And like you, would be on a Russian steppe about to be attacked by wolves wondering "is Slava Zaitsev Maroussia too cliche?" Have a scented day!

5:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Ian's Girl said...

I grew up in the Deep South and didn't miss the humidity one bit in most of the 30 years I lived in Los Angeles, but I do have to say that towards the end, the extreme dryness during the Santa Anas was beginning to really do a number on me the last few years I was there. Like, bloody noses, sinus issues and skin so dry it cracked and bled, too. Not to mention all the static electricity that made touching so many things a nightmare. I am back in Dixie now, not quite so deeply, and I am enjoying the slightly softer feel to the air. ( Talk to me in a month, and you will hear some REAL whining!)

Bvlgari Au The Vert is my go-to heat fragrance, be it humid or dry. I think I might like the French Lover, too, because I like Angelica. The vetiver might give me fits, though)

10:02 AM EDT  
Blogger Unknown said...

Here in Oregon we have temps in the 80s and is expected to last for a few days. Unheard of at this time of year but I'll take it. My (not so) minor whinge is the next door neighbor's bloody AC unit has this just audible hum that is enough to get into your head like a swarm of busy bees. Really annoying when this is the first opportunity to sleep with the window open. I feel like that meek wife feeling the edge of my carving knife..
My go to scents this week will be No 19 and Au The Vert. I actually found an unopened bottle of 4711 cologne at an estate sale last weekend which reminds me so much of my childhood - I think I might give that a go too.

1:57 PM EDT  
Blogger tmp00 said...


I don't know how you guys deal with humidity, It made me want to bite people..

11:07 PM EDT  
Blogger tmp00 said...

Ian's Girl-

Every time I put my key in the lock there's a blue spark and I am basically greasing my skin up every ten minutes so I don't turn into an apple-head doll..

Maybe there's something in favor of humidity after all..

11:10 PM EDT  
Blogger tmp00 said...


Two great choices!

11:11 PM EDT  

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