Mother of All Dilemmas

– Or…Too Much To Wear!

A long, long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away…life was so much easier. These were the days of landline phone calls and conversations that ran something like this:

“Hey, dumbass! Get out your glad rags and put on your party face, because (X, Y, or Z and Not-To-Be-Missed Really Obscure Band About To Be HUGE) is in town tomorrow! Barbue. We’re on the list. 8 PM. Be there!”

End of conversation. The list – these were the days before laminates – being that all-important super-duper envy-making freebie VIP list.

So assuming I did indeed remember (which usually happened), it would be about 6:30 PM before I recalled the ‘glad rags’ and ‘party face’ bits, and instantly hit manic panic mode. After thirty minutes of highly profane language yelled above a very loud stereo, I would pull whatever I found out of my wardrobe, curse myself for not having the time to iron it, and slap something remotely resembling makeup on my face and….go. Thankfully, after the third or fourth shot of tequila, selective amnesia would set in and I no longer cared what I looked like.

Or…as Dianne Brill once famously said, there was the How To Leave The House In Six Hours Or Less version. These were my favorites. One long, luxurious afternoon to contemplate the Unbearable Rightness of Black, a glass of wine, the very loud stereo, the scenario of my Flawless, Unforgettable Entrance running through my mind as I applied my party face with perfect equinamity.

Come that Unforgettable Entrance, with yours truly for once feeling as fabulous as I surely looked, there was usually a cable lying right across the entrance to the green room door that I would somehow miss in my excitement and my four-inch heels, whereupon I would promptly fall flat on my flawless face.

Well, it was one way to get noticed. A few years later, at another backstage event, I was greeted by a very New York sounding “Yo! It’s Nosebleed!” It was the icon who cured it for me. Ladies and gents, Rob Zombie.

Good times, people, good times!

Of course, this was many years before I became a perfume blogger. Back then, it was whichever of my seven or eight bottles caught my attention at the time. Spray after bath and again before leaving. Cabochard always, always worked.

Now, I don’t have too many wardrobe dilemmas for the simple reason that a) I know what looks good, b) Wearing something red will always be lucky, and c) I don’t have much of a wardrobe to wear.

These days, the above scenario runs like this:

Research discloses that if I’m not at a certain location on a certain date for a certain show, I will regret it to the end of my days. If I don’t go, I’ll regret it when I’m ninety, it’s so bad.

Furthermore, since the music venue business in DK is a small world, the head of booking at the venue is one (quite fondly remembered) former boss. I know the guy. Really, I’m not bragging. After some days of agonizing, I write a supremely arrogant email and send it off on the assumption that of course I’ll get a freebie!

Lo and behold…I do. ‘Can’t wait to see YOU again,’ says the reply email.

(Insert epithet of choice here)!!!

Be careful what you wish for. You will get it!

Once my heart stops racing, on to …snap decision. Wardrobe. Got it. All of it, and I don’t have to iron a thing! Next headache.

Oh, no! What perfume do I wear???

I want to…make indelible impressions, I want to be unforgettable, I’ll do whatever it takes…

And meanwhile, at least eighty different samples, decants and bottles are having hysterics in my perfume cabinet.

Weather plays a part here. It could be hot, it could be chilly, and trust me, you don’t want to wear Spiritueuse Double Vanille on a ninety degree day. Or Iris Ganache, gorgeous though it is.

Fracas? Are you kidding? That’s laying it on a little…thick. Ubar? Only if it’s cool enough. Epic? No. Not that kind of night. Gold Woman? Not that kind of night, either.

Tabac Blond? Sex appeal in a bottle! There’s a thought. Ambre Sultan would make the list, except I wore it in a fit of pique the other day and have nothing left.

Orange Star went supernova…and is gone. Damn it.

Odin NY 04-Petrana then. It’s unusual, dark and yet sheer. Maybe.

Or Orris Noir? Or should that be Tolu?

Boxeuses has a certain rock’n’roll vibe – all that leather – but I’m not sure. Bandit? Don’t have enough. Argh!

Fleurs d’Oranger is a no-brainer. It could well be I should just go with this perpetual standby, but that would be…safe. This Night To Remember, I want a little edge.

I’d soak my clothes in a vat of Cepes & Tuberose, but I don’t have enough. (Insert epithet of choice!)

I knew I should have forked out for the Knize Ten when I could. Damn it.

So there it stands, ladies and gents. One upcoming Night To Remember, and I’ll even be sober this time. It’s the start of this leg of the tour, which usually means a good mood all around, it’s a Wednesday in July, I have the day off and even the day after. I have my co-conspirator, the real-life ‘Diarmait’, who landed a photo pass for his brand-new state of the art Nikon. I even have the clothes. Meeting my former boss after all these years fazes me not at all.

I have the laminate. I don’t have wrinkle filler, a steam iron for my face or spackle, but neither does my reason for being there to begin with, and he’s eight years older. I’ll just have to do. Nervous? No. Well, yes. Nothing I can’t handle.

But what, oh what perfume should I wear?

Life was once so easy. Before I became a perfume blogger.



Image: Vintage Ad, PZR Services

13 thoughts on “Mother of All Dilemmas

  1. I'm so glad you posted this!

    So FdO is your safe choice- damn! I was hoping you would think I made a brilliant suggestion 😉

    How about a little something from Doc Elly, either one of her perfumes, or a dab of the devil's absolutes?

  2. Yohji Homme!!!

    It's a motorcycle jacket in a bottle, which is pretty darn cool.

    Or what about Bas de Soie? Silk stockings for a sexy lady…

    Or Memoir? It should be there in time! Darkness and light mingle together in perfect harmony…

    I can't wait to hear what you pick!!! 🙂

  3. If you have any Querelle or Psychotrope by PG, or anything by PG for that matter, or any one of the Andy Tauers, or since it's summer anything tuberose if you want to knock their socks off…

  4. This is, if you don't mind my saying so, a nice problem to have.

    Orris Noir. Or maybe wangle another sample of Yohji Homme, which if I remember, knocked your socks off.

    And you must, you really must, take a photo of you in your glad rags and your drop-dead smell, and post it here…

  5. Forgive me for being lazy, mesdames, but I have a long evening ahead and a longer day tomorrow, so for once, I'll answer of of you in one long comment.

    @JoanElaine: I think…that night will not be a night for Doc Elly's magnificent wonders. If I chose any of those absolutes, I'd choose the green labdanum absolute, which is a whole evolution and complex perfume unto itself, Unfortunately, and this is a mystery, it doesn't stick around. The jury's still out on FdO. See below!

    @Carrie: He always gets me in trouble, that Uncle Serge. My Chêne broke on the bathroom floor yesterday. Can't stand Chergui (mea culpa!) and I have no BdV…yet!

    @Dee: Of course! However, Yohji Homme does strange things to my headspace, and trust me, for once I need my brain to work. Bas de Soie I didn't like nearly so much as I thought I would, but I was probably not paying enough attention. Memoir needs a test run first. I'd try it today, but…read on!

    @Undina: By now and after several suggestions and a great deal of headache, I suspect OJ Orris Noir has made it to the shortlist. It's one of the most…haunting??…irises I've ever met. Besides utterly delicious oh, and yes…über-sexy, too.

    @Ines: Aha! You've been there? You've done that, right? Read on…

    @Lucy: Suddenly, I feel deprived! (Just kidding!) I've tried all of two of the entire and extensive PG line: Felanilla (not me) and Papyrus de Ciane, which you were sweet enough to send and I LOVE it. But either I wear it or I give it a proper test run and review (and I'm thinking about that), or…

    Strangely serendipitous you mentioned tuberose! I was in a “f*** off!” mood this morning, and for whatever reason, I put on Fracas. (I have generous samples of both the EdP and extrait) and wowee…was it drop dead…sexy, glorious, all-out diva 'tude! I was blown away. Fracas goes on the shortlist! Can't argue with tuberose, can you? It gives us such…ideas…;)

    @Muse: Orris Noir has made the shortlist. Because it's that good. If I'm stingy with the Yohji, it's only because I'll never see it again once it's gone, and I couldn't bear that. I'd want to conjure up the Night To Remember genie…by opening a bottle! And of course I'll post pictures, which is to say, I'll email them to interested parties.

    @Absinthe…I am the proud owner of…vintage Magie Noir, Dioressence, Silences, Ivoire and a few sacred drops of Ubar. I'm not complaining! But none of them have the right kind of…vibe I'm after.

    @Alexandra: Ah, Tabac Blond! Sexy in a Bottle. I tremble to contemplate what it will turn into after 90 sweet and sweaty minutes. Best save it for later! 🙂

    Therefore, the short list is…
    Orris Noir – because it's just all round …perfect, and perfectly unusual! A bit like me…

    FdO: Ye Olde Indecision Standby. Jasmine and Tuberose in the battle for supremacy – and…it's mentioned several times in my story. When my protagonist visits Hell for the first – and the last – time – she's wearing FdO…That very last chapter…she's wearing FdO. That very last scene with the Devil's real life alter ego…she's wearing FdO. Therefore…shortlisted!

    Therefore, the finalists are…
    Ormonde Jayne Orris Noir.
    Piguet Fracas (and I'd never think I'd love it, but I…LOVE it! It puts the Diva in my 'tude, and a certain sizzle in my stride!)
    Serge Lutens Fleurs d'Oranger. Because. And I can always pretend it's the last chapter in QD, when…never mind.
    Amouage Opus V. Staggering, elegant, feral, furry, wild-at-heart, and…yes…damn near irresistible!

    I'll have to give Honour a proper test. Friday, probably. I have this sinking feeling…it might be worth it.

  6. I love your shortlist, and I can't wait to hear (and possibly see!?) the outcome of this planning. 🙂

  7. Suzanne, darling…yes, I have to say it (and this is all thanks to you!), I LOVE…Fracas, and I never in a zillion years would have thought I would. I do like tuberose, but I never would have guessed I would fall so hard for THE…tuberose. I see a decant in my future…Fracas in both permutations – the extrait and the EdP – will be getting a review at some point in the not-too-distant future. Scent Twins – you bet! 🙂

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