Running on Fumes

The Scent With Power to
Make You Dream Or Run

Some of us like perfumes. Others, stink too much (you know who you are. Maybe). Some use one to cover up the other, to widespread annoyance. And yet, for all we know, the primeval sense of smell may be the scent that has saved our species from extinction. Maybe.
The odor spectrum is radically split into two realms: one transcends us to heaven, if not to sweet remembrances of the past; the other tosses us into the very bowels of hell, all gagging included. But without rot wafts, we wouldn’t know how appreciate so much a whiff of lavender.
Or to breathe into a room full of old books. To some, that’d be the one to bottle and carry around at all times. Humans are partial to jasmine, to myrrh, and to citruses, too, not just to the primeval smell of milk or food in general. Our taste for pleasant smells is its own reward.
A familiar smell can stop people on their tracks, and thrown them into deep reverie. Often, a memory floods the mind even before it can recognize what triggered it. Similar to an old song, a scent can transport anyone to an elusive mix of recollection and comfort feelings.
No wonder the sense of direction has been linked to the nose. It’s where scientists found traces of magnetite, a crystal we share with birds. Of all the places we stick our noses in, or point them to, guessing correctly which is the way back home can be a life saver.

We should also thank the stars for the nose to point forward and far from what’s better left behind (and unsaid). But either for a matter of survival, as when one smells a fire, or a rat, or for sentimental reasons, it’s hard to imagine organisms depleted from such crucial ability.
But some people are, either by accident or freak of nature. And most are doing just fine, thank you very much. So there you have it, how lucky you’ve been and hardly noticed. And don’t go around saying that nobody told you: you just have. You’re welcome.
Within the vastness of what flares the wings of our nose (beside anger and derangement), two traces are particularly close to us: body odor (you knew it was coming); and city smells. Each or combined, (more)
Read Also:
* Space Odor
* Aroma Holiday
* Two Scents

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Sleep With the Fishes

There Will Never
Be Another Gus

Depressed. N​eurotic. ​Terminally bored. Obsessive, self-absorbed and inscrutable. Yes, any of these would be a good description for a New Yorker; many did fall for the cliche of the ‘cooler than thou celebrity.’ Gus, the polar bear who died last month, was all of that and more.
In his eventful 27 years, he pretty much ran the gamut that most residents of the city have tracked on their way to legend in their own mind: he got here eager to inhabit the imagination of eight million-plus people. But in the process, he may have lost his er, bearings.
Since 1988, Gus had ruled Manhattan’s only zoo, in New York’s Central Park,  as its most distinguished and most eccentric resident. Kids loved all 700 pounds of him, but somehow, somewhere along the way, something clicked inside him.
There was a time he was just a tender teddy from Toledo, Ohio. But once in New York, he sported an almost autistic trait: swimming laps for hours on end, as if he’d found a straight connection to his inner Olympic god. It was his moment of Zen, repeated over and over, day after day. Mesmerized, visitors couldn’t get enough of his thunderous and yet graceful back and forth routine.
He presided for a quarter of a century over a way too small tank, cherished by his two female companions, Ida and Lily, who both died before him. He leaves no offspring. Which is a pity, because he was, after all, the only bear worth knowing in the Big Apple, as 22-year Continue reading