An Open Letter to the Young, Perfumed Guy Seated Next To Us
Dear young man seated next to us at Three Seventy Common last night:
That's not an assassination of your character; it's a literal assessment of your fragrance. You were bathed in body spray, the kind you can buy on the shelf at any grocery store or drugstore in the United States, swimming in it to the point where the air above you was probably flammable. It was a truly God-awful reek in such a small, confined space.
You looked like a young guy; you had papers in front of you and weren't paying attention to the "Uncommon Mondays" guest chef's menu, which makes me think you were either interviewing for something or working. God only knows what impression you made on the older gentleman sitting with you.
Every time you raised your arms to gesticulate, you sent acrid shock waves of cheap scent ricocheting around the room. Suddenly, the outstanding sea urchin risotto with black cod, roasted grapes and mushrooms was overlaid with the humming buzz of mass-market perfume; the meat course that followed tasted hollow, because our senses of smell were fatigued from your continued olfactory assault. You even managed to ruin my martini.
There wasn't any way to escape it, either; Eric Greenspan is a popular chef, and the restaurant was full. We were doomed to sit next to you through six courses while you obliviously pointed your armpit-delivered chemical weaponry at us. Rather than lingering and talking over coffee or a digestif, the four of us fled into the Laguna Beach night, desperate for fresh air tinged only with the salty tang of the ocean.
You need to learn that cologne is the new cigarette smoke; that you can smell attractive by washing with scented soap; that the way to apply cologne is, in the words of Carson Kressley, "spray, delay, and walk away." In other words, spray the cologne once into your hallway at home, then walk through the mist.
You, sir, are an Axe-hole.
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