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Bus Story: Transportation Nose

January 5, 2011

Drizzly, dark and cold, the morning greets the ridership as we find our places and begin the mental preparation for the day ahead. The Sullen Teens were with us at the start, but they were subdued and only half-heartedly draped themselves around the ole 54. Later in the ride, a man comes aboard and, as he passes me, I am overwhelmed by his cologne. No idea what he looked like, as I quickly turned my head to try and not take any more of the olfactory beat-down than I already had. Within an instant, I remember someone I knew more than two decades ago in college. To say I remembered him is not quite right; I recalled the sense of the dorm suite, the light from the rooms, an overall impression of newness and unfamiliarity, and the intense cologne that he doused himself in regularly.  Closing my eyes, I let myself travel back there and tried to focus on specific people and images.  But just then, another part of my brain registered that I really don’t like the smell of this cologne and that it makes me slightly queasy. Yanked back to the present, quickly taking deep breaths to keep from being nauseated, I grab my stuff and change seats, as far from Dipped in Fragrance Guy as I can get.   I like time-travelling as much as the next person, but not if I have to carry air-sickness bags.



From → Bus Stories

One Comment
  1. Ha! I had a roommate in college, my first year, who smelled always of baby powder and cat piss. Don’t know what kind of cologne that was, but I’ll never get it out of my nostrils.

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