Monday, September 29, 2008

Dear House of Representatives:

Thank you. You did good.


Secret Pal 12 Question 13...

...and, um, 14 through 17, apparently.

If you were told you could never again buy yarn, would would your last yarn purchase be?

Sheesh, I dunno. The anxiety I feel over that question is somewhat mitigated by the comfort of knowing just how much yarn I have at home.

I'm not sure what the spirit of the question is -- do the PTB want to know what one single yarn I would buy? Or just how excessive and/or logical I would become?

If someone said, "Marin, all the yarn shops are closing tomorrow and they wouldn't take your money anyway," I'd buy a bunch of laceweight§ -- probably some nice alpaca and cashmere; a bunch of sweaters' worth# of nice wool and Therapi††; Shibui, Noro and Red Rocks Fiber Works sock yarn.

If you were told you could never knit again, what would be the last thing you’d knit??

I'd probably tackle a big, gorgeous lace shawl with an edging and all kinds of stuff I've been reading about but never got around to.

In a given year, how many times do you buy yarn?

There is no way to answer that question. My yarn-buying habits have no rhyme, reason, season or schedule. Which makes them not habits, I guess.

Who thought up this question? Do you know anyone who can answer that effectively?‡‡

And what is your favorite place to buy yarn from? A festival? A shop? Online? Dish your favorite places!§§

Knit Picks and Elann for when I need basic yarns.¶¶ Posh## for almost everything else, with the occasional forays into Knit/Purl or etsy shops for exotic yarn that makes me feel good 'cause it shows up in the mail and makes going to the mailbox worthwhile.

Lastly, with Fall in full swing in many areas, what is the one thing you look forward to most?


Pumpkin bread, pumpkin beer, pumpkin pie, pumpkin spices, pumpkin seeds, jack o' lanterns...

We slacked off ever so slightly last week, but we did our push up assessment and I did 24@ good push ups.%

Of course, my partner in crime did thirty-fucking-five first round of the third week when she only had to do twenty-five... show off.^

Competition may be good for some of us. I plan to do thirty-five in my last set tonight just to show her.&

I actually have several perfumes saved up in my spreadsheet,††† all sniffed and sussed and ready to present to you.

Without further ado...

French Love - Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab (Bewitching Brews, the Conjure Bag)

Marin says: Non-descript floral and very bright fruit. I'm going to stop saying "kool-aid" and find some other synthetic, neon fruit analog. Perhaps jello? There's always room for jello.‡‡‡

It gets considerably duller in the roll-out (such as it is),§§§ with a sweet, slightly powdery density... and still a hint of jello.

BPAL says: A warm, soft, sexual blend.¶¶¶ Sweet and alluring. Used to entice new lovers and add an aura of temptation and carnal sin to your environment.###

Hans says: That's pretty floral. And kinda like kool-aid.††††

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Why? What have you heard?

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Lots. Lots of yarn. So much it has its own replacement value under my contents insurance.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Big, fancy projects, satisfyingly large yardage numbers.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Thin should be elegant. If it's just thin for the sake of thin, it's like fucking an ironing board. Hmmmmm... maybe that doesn't apply to yarn as well as it does to people.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Sweaters are big projects and if I changed my mind, I could use the yarn for several scarves and hats.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Yarn of rocks!

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): I don't want to meet that person. He or she is too tightly wound for my floppy little world.

§§FOOTNOTE (turn it around): This had two exclamation points. Drove me crazy. Journalism taught me the only reason to use multiple bangs is for comic effect. I don't think this is funny.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (one foot in front of the other): Solid colour, worsted weight, probably superwash.

##FOOTNOTE (goin' to the pound): Sylvia's House of Fuzzy Crack.

@FOOTNOTE (atted): 24!

I know what I said about exclamation points. I have always been a self-serving grammar hypocrite.

%FOOTNOTE (percented): I am a complete stickler for form and distance. I think I did 27, but couldn't keep my butt out of the last three.

^FOOTNOTE (careted): Another tangent: I started giggling because my college boyfriend (oddly, the same one that used to use the ironing board line quoted above... it's a big day for the college boyfriend) used to say, "Show off! Do some push ups... it'll go away" whenever I'd best him on something. Yes, that's a dick joke.

&FOOTNOTE (ampersanded): Nyah-nyah-nyah.

†††FOOTNOTE (three! Three beautiful crosses! Mwahahahaha! *kkkchh* *EeeEeeEee*[lightning and bats - it works better in person]): Yes, there's a spreadsheet.

‡‡‡FOOTNOTE (I've been working on the railroad): Tangent: At a housewarming party this weekend, some of my old-line guy friends were talking about a guy's night out. Somewhere along the line, my name came up.

"Hey, if I'm invited, I'll be there."

"Of course," said Jack, "You're like jello. There's always room for Marin."

"Awww. That's really nice."

"Oh, he says that about you a lot," said Jen, Jack's wife. "Marin is like jello. We always have room for Marin."

Made my whole week.

§§§FOOTNOTE (180... 360... 540?): I'm fine-tuning my terminology. Not necessarily to fit terminology standards, but for my own thought process. See, most things you put on your wrist in the name of scent will change over time. Bits will fade. Some fade faster than other. I think of roll-out as an almost architectural exercise by the author of the perfume: it changes over time, but it is built to change -- probably in a particular way. It isn't just a matter of subtracting one note after the other until there's only the stickiest scent left. The oils tend to have that "survival of the fittest" deletion of elements, rather than what I think of as a true roll-out.

¶¶¶FOOTNOTE (footprints): WHAT?!

###FOOTNOTE (pound it... make it 'splode): At least you know why I bought it in the first place. I'm always looking to entice new lovers and add an aura of temptation and carnal sin to my environment.

††††FOOTNOTE (is this a record?): In case you think this has become overly-collaborative, there is a very strict code we follow in huffing scents: I grab a bunch of samples and put them on my desk at work. I pull those names from my spreadsheet and put them on a separate page with no notes or reviews to guide me. Hans and I pick from that list randomly. I put the stuff on and write my review. I take it to Hans and note his review. The object of the game is for both Hans and I to come up with our own uninfluenced assessments.

Sometimes, "kool-aid" is the only term that works.

Friday, September 26, 2008

That's Funny Right There...


...I don't care who you are.

Genius Sarah's mom called her from Michigan to tell her about this bumpersticker:

Democrats are sexy.
Have you ever heard of anyone looking for a good piece of elephant?

(I added the pictures myself)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

New Word!


Pronunciation: \ˌyü-zə-ˈfrək-chə-ˌwer-ē, -sə-\
Function: noun
Date: circa 1618

1 : one having the usufruct of property
2 : one having the use or enjoyment of something


Usually, we say "tenant," but I think the person who wrote the contract was all excited to use "usufructuary."

I wonder... if you don't usufructuary, do you lose your fructuary?

Presidential Hopefuls

You Are 24% Democrat

You're a bit Democrat, and probably more liberal than you realize.

If you're still voting Republican, maybe it's time that you stop.

You Are 40% Republican

You're a bit Republican, and probably more conservative than you realize.

If you're still voting Democrat, maybe it's time that you stop.

I'm guessing the other 36% is Muppet.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Oh, The Pressure



I'm not even going to ask if it's just me. I have 137 blogs on my Google reader and all but maybe that dangling seven are experiencing blog malaise.


Meh, if you will.

[SUMMARY: Blah.]

When everybody in the office is happy at once or cranky at once or singing the blues in chorus, I blame it on barometric pressure. It's the only thing I can think of we all have in common.

It may even have some basis in reality.

But when the whole blogosphere goes "meh" at once... blogometric pressure?

Blogs were pretty blogolicious last year at this time, so it isn't back-to-school or a bandwagon-hop to football.

[SUMMARY: I'm out of ideas.]

I hope we all get better soon; this isn't nearly as much fun.

To cheer us up, some poetic spam§:

I in guava envoi marsh
FwEMAaLE VmInAmGoRmA - $1.55
CrIvAnLnIcS - $1.96
LnEwVzIuTsRoA - $3.67
UuLwTsRwAmM - $0.43
SOeaMA - $0.47
But is steel
For be permeate rigorous nicely#

I did more than the requisite push ups Wednesday night and am feeling pretty smug about my progress.†† Sunday, we'll re-assess our strength before moving on.


Tweedledum - Black Phoenix Alchemy Labs (Mad Tea Party)

Marin says: Like the scenttrack to a claymation holiday special.

This is weirdly vivid and synthetic like bright red Christmas candles from Hallmark on top of Glade Spiced Wine Plug-Ins and wet, crumpled pine, but with a hint of icy air blowing behind it.

It's either surprisingly dense for something with that much space behind it or surprisingly roomy for something with that much crowded in its front room.‡‡

And because I'm getting such a strong, sweet fruity thing, I'm going to guess there's honey and some kind of tropical fruit in it... or maybe orange blossom, which can smell like honeyed fruit.

BPAL says: Absurd! Green mango,$ fig, patchouli§§ and green tea.

Hans says: Christmas tree. With hot apple cider in the background. Christmas tree decorating party.¶¶

FOOTNOTE (crossed): And, oh, I think you will.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Yes, I checked. You would probably be surprised at how well researched this blog really is. Despite my not knowing "lede."

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): I never get spam like this. Most of my spam is Canadian bank spam. I'm a little in love with Canadian pharmacy spam. Canada is just a wonderful place with all the best spam. In guava envoi marsh...

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Don't click on that. I don't know where it's been.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Engrish!

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): We need a hubris pool for when the gods are going to smite me for that little comment.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Listen to me. Sounding just like I'm learning stuff about perfumes. If you could see how puffed up with pride I am that I got and USED the concept of space in regards to perfume... oh, you'd up your date in the hubris pool. You'd give me ten minutes, then run for cover before the lightning strikes.

$FOOTNOTE (on the money!): Ha! Got one!

§§FOOTNOTE (my lil' head is just SPINNING!): Such a big lightbulb, so shiny... OK, I may not have picked patchouli out, but I'm guessing people with far more scent genius than I would recognise that the patchouli is that wet, piney space behind the sugary goop. I feel like I just discovered uranium or something.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (head and shoulders above): Never have Hans and I been so in accord. Even if he didn't pick out the space behind the sugary goop.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Have You Met Hans?†

Hans is a tall, laid-back Libra who loves puppies, CU football and facial hair. He also enjoys long walks on the beach, perfume critique and creative photography.

Hans was recently shorn like a sheep.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Anybody else watch "How I Met Your Mother"? Have you met Ted?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

On the Whey

When you get four women together, you may have a hard time getting them to agree on anything.

We all agreed there would be excellent opportunity for many, many cheesemaking puns.

Actually, we didn't disagree on anything, so it was a pretty good day.

eBeth, Annie, Tani and I convened in Tani's excellent group-cooking kitchen to make mozzarella. We decided ahead of time to each bring a gallon of milk and make four batches of cheese.

We used whole milk for the first batch and did it all by itself, figuring if we were going to screw something up, we should probably only screw up one batch.

[SUMMARY: We are smarter than some of us look.]

eBeth and Annie . . . Tani and Annie . . . eBeth and Tani

Indeed, the first batch didn't turn out all that great.§

No whey! Whey!

It tasted OK, but the texture left something to be desired. We took the troubleshooting notes to heart and launched into the next two batches.

Benjamin mused on.

The second and third batches came out very well, except that one was fat-freeand fat-free cheese just sucks even if you make it yourself.

[SUMMARY: This may only surprise me.]

The right one is whey bigger than the left. Sorry... that was just cheesy.

Applying all our skill and found wisdom, we launched into the last batch.

For those of you playing at home, you heat the milk with some citric acid. Once it gets to temperature, add the rennet and stir it and heat it.

Let it sit, then check to see if the whey has separated and the curd has formed.

Then you cut the cheese.#

It never o-curd to me I'd be on my whey to cutting the cheese.

Pedro sleeps on.

Once you cut the curds, you remove as much of the whey as possible, microwave it for a minute and *immediately* begin pulling it like taffy.††

Once it's smooth and shiny, you have cheese.‡‡

On the way home, there may be cranes. Exotic cranes in suburban locations.§§

And you get home and your Broncos play a weird but exciting game, ending in a win.%

Yeah, Sunday was a pretty good day.

I fell short on my push ups last night. Something popped - not like I broke anything, more like I got a charlie horse in my trapezius - so I stopped. But I was only three short of the stated minimum, so I don't feel too bad.


Corinna - Cobalt Blends (oil)

Marin says: *sigh*¶¶ You know what this reminds me of most? Erythromicin in a bubble gum-sweet suspension I had to take when I had ear infections as a kid. It is a very pink sweet with a slightly medicinal smell behind it.

As it spread out, the medicinal smell bubbled up and it smelled a little like chlorine. We're in the neighbourhood of kool-aid and bleach.

Surprisingly, an hour later, it smelled like a florist's shop - not flowers, per se, but that cold, wet, green smell of cuttings and freon with an embroidery of crushed petals.

Cobalt Blends says: In 16 BC, the Latin poet Ovid published a book called Amores, an erotic tribute to the elusive Corinna.## Centuries later, Corinna has been the subject of many versions of a traditional song. A sassy note of almond slides into a lingering blend dripping with honey††† and a honeycomb essence vanilla accord. Warm, womanly, very sexy.‡‡‡

Hans says: It's definitely something alcohol. Gin. Well, not gin, but pine. And some sort of cleaning supply.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): It just made such a good lead. Or "lede," as I've come to know it.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): I'm not naming names.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Brainssssss!

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): The other was 2%, which was considerably better. We didn't test quite enough variables against quite enough control groups, but it appears the brand of milk may have made a difference. Tani's organic whole milk used in the first batch may also have been a victim of greater heating, which kills the bacteria needed to make cheese -- you can't use ultra-pasteurised, so it generally has to be local and not organic. Annie's fat free Royal Crest home-delivery milk exhibited symptoms not only of being fat free, but it did this weird marbling thing after it was dunked in ice water. The 2% and whole Lucerne batches were by far the best.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): You *knew* that was coming. You would have been terribly disappointed if it didn't.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): We think part of the problem with the first batch may also have been that we took it out of the microwave, donned gloves, read instructions, THEN pulled it.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): I left out a couple of details in the name of keeping you from falling asleep on your keyboard and typing njnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn with your nose.

§§FOOTNOTE (cranes twisting in the breeze): Pulled over, stopped the car, made an effort. How long has it been since you saw a crane here?

%FOOTNOTE (percented): By "you," I mean, "I." Your cheesemaking experience may be different and may not involve the Broncos at all.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (bonk bonk): Mostly because I'm stuck in a perfume rut right now. With any luck, one of the randomly-chosen scents over the next few days will perk me up and make smelling worthwhile again.

##FOOTNOTE (let me pound this into your head): Apparently, Cobalt didn't read the same version of research on Amores we did, since Wiki says it's a parody of the erotic poetry of the day. Or maybe Cobalt got it right on, and this is an absurdist parody of sexy.

†††FOOTNOTE (xxx): What's up with this? I love the smell of honey. I've had honey body wash and honey dust that were lovely. Perfumes that say they smell of honey... don't. In my vast experience, they smell of kool-aid.

‡‡‡FOOTNOTE (double-triple-x): Don't get me started on "sexy." I just participated in a blustering, incoherent way in a discussion on the term "sexy" being applied to everything from shoes (which can be sexy, but not all of them) to tires (which can't be sexy without the aid of a distinct fetish). I'm growing tired to the point of over-sensitive of sexy meaning any level mundane goodness rather than actually sexy. Cripes... it must be time for my meds.

Monday, September 15, 2008

A Walk in the Woods

I went to a magical place on Saturday.

I'd be tempted to sing a Disney walk-in-the-woods song of some sort, but it was on beyond Disney, magic-wise.

A couple of months ago, I started catching glimpses of a wondrous new restaurant, Beatrice & Woodsley, in various local mags and rags. The compelling part of most of the reviews went something like this:

"Wow. You've never seen anything like it! You have to see this place! There's no other restaurant in the universe that even comes close! Words can't describe!"

And I shouted at the cold, unblinking Internet reviews, "TRY!"

So about a month ago, I was sitting at the Coral Roomwith Bag Lady Katharyn and Her Friend Sue, and Her Friend Sue started talking about this wonderful place and something she said made me sit up and say, "Is this Beatrice & Woodsley?"

"Yes! Have you been?"

"No, but I've read all these reviews and I'm dying to see what it looks like!"

"We should go to brunch this weekend!"

"Yes! Yes we should!"

But Bag Lady Katharyn is oddly resistant to the potential charms of Beatrice & Woodsley, and since it isn't my friend Sue, but Her Friend Sue, we didn't go.

A couple of weeks ago, Tani said we should get together before her baby comes, so I jumped at the chance.

"Have you been to Beatrice & Woodsley? Have you heard of Beatrice & Woodsley? Can we go to Beatrice & Woodsley? They have high tea at Beatrice & Woodsley... we should go to Beatrice & Woodsley for tea! Here, have a weblink!"

Tani loves me and is always happy to save me from myself, so we went.

And it's lovely. Unusual and lovely.

The windows are tinted yellow to give that warm, slanted autumn light to the restaurant.§ Aspen trunks grouped in twos and threes punctuate rustic elements of raw wood, kerosene lanterns and antique pot-bellied stoves in the front parlourwhere we sat.

There's a long, cosy dining area that parallels the bar and features horseshoe booths separated by muslin panels.

The bar has chinked wood strips behind it, and chainsaws are embedded in logs to create supports for the shelves that hold the liquor bottles.

Despite all this Little House on the Prairie imagery, it doesn't feel rustic in the slightest. I don't know how they did it, but I want to buy their decorator a drink. It's chic and modern and warm and I just loved it.

The food was good too... amazing, even. We shared a Double Windsor and a mushroom pasty.# We both agree we want to go back and that it's a place to take someone who's seen it all.

"I'd bring Tina here," said Tani, which is the ultimate in destination compliments.

Tani's friend Tina has cut my six degrees to most of the celebrity world by several degrees. She was Avril Lavigne's personal assistant and has done the PA thing for other celebrities. She lives in Sidney, and trots the globe and goes to all the best places.

Tani would bring Tina to Beatrice & Woodsley because it would impress her.

When we were done, Tani had to go to the bathroom.

"I'm going with you. I don't even have to pee, but I have to see what the bathroom looks like."

View from the toilet

The cove where the bathroom doors are is completely panelled in pieced rough wood. The doors don't look like doors... there's just a giant doorknob,†† and when you pull it, a portion of the wall opens.

The bathroom is a largely unadorned room. Toilet paper hangs from the ceiling and the walls are tiled in a grey-white brick pattern. All the light is provided by the golden glow of several transluscent bricks in the wall. There's no sink, no mirror, just a toilet and a half-log up against the wall that serves as a stool.

The sinks are in the entryway to the bathrooms, two zinc tubs flanked by pulleys and overhung by bead chains. When you pull the left pulley, the sound of gurgling and flowing water rings above your head, and after a moment, the water runs down the chains.

Once you've washed your hands, a tug on the left pulley closes the tap. The whole time you wash your hands, you're looking through tree branches over glass into the restaurant.

We were *so* glad we went to the bathroom.

OK, these fucking push ups *hurt*.‡‡

Right, right, in a good way.

And I may be kidding myself, but yesterday I could've sworn I saw some shoulders in the mirror.


Midnight Tryst - Neil Morris (Vault - edp)

Marin says: Eeep! The first whiff was strong and wrong. Not bad-bad, just not anything I really like in a perfume. It reminds me of Tabu, which was the perfume of choice of a woman I babysat for and it always hit me hard when I walked into her house.§§

I can't pick out a lot of notes. It's very like the wild aldehyde days of the 40's and 50's and I personally don't care for the chemical vanillas and medicinal roses that manifest in Chanel No. 5, Joy, Tabu and, say, Midnight Tryst.

We gave it a few minutes and, basically, it smells the same, just mellower. Some vanilla came up from the depths and is keeping some of the sharper scents round.

Strangely, what I get from typing distance is cat pee. That's unpleasant.

Neil Morris says: An intoxicating and sexy scent with Top Notes of Cinnamon and Clove, Heart Notes: French Narcissus, Gardenia, Magnolia and Rose$ and Base Notes: Amber, Patchouli, Benzoin,¶¶ Dark Vanilla,$ Musk, Castoreum$ and Civet.$

Hans says: Old fashioned.

[upon letting it sit]

Yeah... it's mellowed, but it's still an aldehyde.##

FOOTNOTE (crossed): I bet you're shocked I was at the Coral Room.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): I like Sue, and I'd bet Sue might even be game to go to Beatrice & Woodsley with me without Katharyn, but I don't know her phone number. Or her last name.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): My living room is painted Antique Gold (I was going to link you to the Sherwin Williams colour, but it doesn't appear to exist) for this very effect.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): That's what I'm calling it, anyway.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Which I pronounced "pay-stee" even though it's "past-ee" and it was spectacular by any name. Mushrooms and roasted onions on one end merging with figs and blue cheese on the other. The wonderful waiter suggested we eat from the savoury end to the sweet end for a complete flavour journey.

I just drooled a little.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Bigger than a softball. Maybe not quite as big as a bowling ball, but pushing it.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Not helped by a tricky elbow from knitting and mousing. whinewhinewhine

§§FOOTNOTE (strangling vortices of Tabu): I was horrified when she gave me a Christmas present the first year I worked for them and it turned out to be a Tabu gift set, complete with lotion and fragrant powder. Which, of course, I had to wear occasionally so she could smell my gratitude.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (two heads better than one): Maybe one of my perfumista buddies can help me out here: when I don't know what a note is, I Google it. I usually end up on Wikipedia. Wiki says benzoin has a light camphor odour, so I always think "benzoin" when I smell camphor in a perfume. But I've recently been hipped to Nathan Branch, and he constantly refers to benzoin as a sweet resin. Sweet or camphor? Resin or medicine? Anybody? Bueller? Bueller?

##FOOTNOTE (pounding the lingo right into Hans): Isn't it cute how far he's come?

$FOOTNOTE (on the money): Ha! Got one! Well, if you credit "cat pee" to one of the animal anal secretions, which I do.

Friday, September 12, 2008

'Atsa Lotsa


So did you like that tease yesterday?

Didja spend many happy hours daydreaming about the possibilities... over-the-top cocktails, ten-course gourmet dinners, celebrity parties, a meeting with the King of Burundi, wild naked romps?

I should've been a marketing major.

This weekend, I am...


[SUMMARY: The suspense is killing you.§]

...making cheese.

Mozzarella, to be exact.

Did you just what-the-fuck and smack your computer? Sorry 'bout that. I know it's not glamourous, but it's sufficiently odd enough to blog it.

A couple of months ago, The Book Club that Changed the World# read Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver.

Barbara makes cheese.

Now I want to make cheese.††

So I sent away for the beginner's cheesemaking kit% and book^ and Annie and Tani and eBeth and I are going to make cheese on Sunday.

The first big object lesson in making your own cheese is finding the only way to get milk that isn't ultra-pasteurised is to buy a local brand.

I think there's a "duh" in there somewhere.@

The nice man‡‡ at Robinson's Dairy asked me why I wanted non-ultra-pasteurised milk. I told him you can't make cheese with ultra-pasteurised milk.

I could almost hear the lightbulb go off over his head.

"We've had a few calls lately about that and I had no idea why people were looking for it. That makes sense."

Which means maybe we're not the only people in Denver making cheese this weekend.

Small world.§§
I did my push ups last night. I did ten extra. My butt is killing me.

By the end of this thing, my butt is going to be a veritable stone globe. Not only do I work my butt really hard in the interest of keeping my alignment correct for push ups, I spend roughly 48 hours during football season clenching and doing reverse squats as I drive my team to victory.

I may not play football, but never let it be said I don't participate.


Wanda - BPAL (oil)

Marin says: I'm trying to teach myself not to be surprised when there's a roll-out on oils. I had convinced myself that the primary difference between the BPAL oils and "real" perfumes is the lack of construction. But I guess anything that has more than one ingredient is subject to those ingredients degrading at different rates.

The first blast of Wanda smelled very strongly of a deep, sour red wine before turning into a rose-and-sandalwood sort of smell.

Funny, from an impressionistic distance, it weirdly fruity, like Fruit Stripe gum. What is the alcohol and fake fruit thing?¶¶

Up close, I'm getting an unpleasant licorice and ylang-ylang## I can't abide. If it doesn't improve in a few minutes, I'm washing my arms.

For the record, it did mellow out, but too strong and too sweet for my taste. Enough that I forgot about it and left it until late that night, when it was a ho-hum sweet smell clinging tenaciously to my wrists.

One thing you have to say about the oils: they do stick.

BPAL says: Along with Loviatar, she has become something of a Patron Goddess of all Dominatrixes, Wanda is the breathtakingly beautiful sable-wrapped marble queen of Sacher-Masoch's fantasies. Her scent is a deep red Merlot$ with a faint hint of leather, sexual musk and body heat over crushed roses,$ violets and myrtle.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): That's me, centre of your universe.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): In order of probability.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): You may kill me when you see how far I've led you astray.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Keeping in mind that I thought tennis racquets as party favours was good enough to blog. It's a slow season for everybody, isn't it?

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Not as grandiose as it sounds. I made them read The Map that Changed the World early in our history and it was almost universally reviled. This led to the tongue-in-cheek name and the very serious rule that we never, ever read a geology book again.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): See, the book problem doesn't just cover a life overrun with books, it covers the collateral damage my checking account takes with every new book-driven whim I chase.

%FOOTNOTE (percented): Which I think of as Fisher Price My First Mozzarella.

^FOOTNOTE (careted): Naturally.

@FOOTNOTE (atted): 'Cause, y'know... the book is about eating locally.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Pat.

§§FOOTNOTE (stir your curds): Still wouldn't want to paint it.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (heads up!): See: One Leaf Clove

##FOOTNOTE (lb lb): I generally like licorice. Maybe in conjunction with ylang-ylang it becomes bad.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

What's All the Racquet?

I'm tired, I didn't do my push ups last night...

But I do have a kind of funny story.

OK, I think it's funny.§

See, Dz is moving to California.# We had a going-away gathering at the Coral Room last night.

Dz used to coach at a summer tennis camp for disadvantaged children.†† Head‡‡ sponsored it, and Dz has an assload of leftover Head racquets, many of which she brought to the party.

"Maybe I can give them out like party favours," she said.

Every time someone new joined the festivities, she'd grab the stack of racquets and say, "Care for a racquet?" in a totally deadpan way. Indeed, I don't think she was trying to be funny, which made it all the more charming.

It seemed like such a delightfully oddball thing to say it continued to tickle me right up until I kissed Dz goodbye and sent her on her way.

[SUMMARY: Giggling through tears is one of my favourite emotions.§§]

Tune in tomorrow 'cause you'll never guess what I'm doing this weekend.

Tea for Two - L'Artisan Parfumeur

Marin says: I got nothing but smoke. Not good woodfire or incense, but stale ashtray.

It only lasted about an hour, which is bad for a perfume, but probably good for a perfume that makes you smell like a church basement after an AA meeting.

L'Artisan says: It begins with the curling, rising steam of Lapsung-Souchong [sic]¶¶ tea. All the notes are orchestrated around the smoke$ and wooded scents to create a more fiery and warmer sensation. The sweet, fresh, spicy facets reveal the delicious delights of honey.

Both voluptuous and spicy, it is a marvellous tea for your skin!

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Hey, I just have to do it three days a week. I'll do them tonight and Saturday and I can get back to the MWF schedule I'd figured on when we started this thing. You may feel free to shame me like the family pig if I come in tomorrow without having done push ups.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Tired, no push ups and funny story are all related.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): We all know how suspect my sense of humour is.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): This isn't the funny part.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): With her boyfriend who, I think, is an actor. I find that wildly adventurous in a Hollywood script kinda way.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Or something. I think she described it as "teaching tennis to kids who wouldn't have anything else to do if they weren't playing tennis."

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Heheheheh.

§§FOOTNOTE (twisting words): All apologies to Dolly Parton.

$FOOTNOTE (on the money!): Ha! Got one!

¶¶FOOTNOTE (poking my head up just enough...): I have it on good authority Lapsang is a very smoky tea. I also have it on good authority that the spelling is L-a-p-s-a-n-g.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

This is the Blog that Never Ends†

My favourite part of last night was when Mike Ditka said JaMarcus Russell was retarded.§

I'm pretty sure that's not very Christian or saintly, but I'm pretty sure I can scrape up some good Satan-based scripture to support my views on the Raiders.

[SUMMARY: St. Marin, my ass.#]

I did, however have a pretty saintly encounter with the push ups last night, and today they hurt.

I fear Wednesday.

[SUMMARY: I bet there's a Greek name for Fear of Push Ups on Wednesday.%]

Hans is gone to Lusk again until Friday. Let us revel in his last perfume review and count the days until he returns.

One Leaf Clove - Cobalt Blends (oil)

Marin says: Ook. At first glance, it's kinda awful. There's a pleasant enough (if banal) floral with a touch of wood to it... but fighting it is a synthetic, kool-aid fruit smell, like something a four-year-old inexplicably likes in his breakfast cereal.

Fortunately, that dissolves away fairly quickly, leaving just a tangy hint in the background under a bed of soft rose cupping a light clove with maybe a touch of bitter orange. But you only get that snorking right up on the wrist -- the impressionistic distance†† is still a little sweet and definitely unremarkable.

Confession: I really loved this around midnight.‡‡ After a long day of wallowing in bed and watching football, it was a really rich, slightly dirty cocoa that made my mouth water.

Scent Scribbles says:§§ Clove, fig, juicy blood orange,$ peach,$ oakmoss and a gossamer drizzle of honey.$

Hans says: Lavender and lemon

FOOTNOTE (crossed): You'd think that some days, when I had nothing to say, I'd just shut up. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed):

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Well, that and the final score.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): If Al Davis isn't Satan, I don't know who is.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Do saints say "ass"?

%FOOTNOTE (percented): tells me ΑΝΕΒΆΖΩ is Greek for push up, but all the sites agree there are no Wednesdays in Greece. So I have Anebazophobia on Wednesdays.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): I'm pretty sure that's the important part. It's what I smell when I'm typing, for instance, or what you might smell if you ran into me at the grocery store.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): That's a long time to wait for the yummy.

§§FOOTNOTE (supply and demand curves): Cobalt Blends no longer has a description, since it was a limited edition. And now you have a good idea of why I bought it. Such a sucker.

$FOOTNOTE (on the money!): Ha! Got one! Mostly becaues I'm counting peach + honey drizzle = Fruity Pebbles.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Bingo Wings and Pneumatic Boobs

We interrupt our normal blog program to bring you this special, self-serving announcement:

I'm going to do 100 push ups.

Not today.

Not tomorrow.

Probably not next week.

But within six weeks, I intend to be able to do 100 push ups in a row, with good form.

I'm guessing there aren't two among you who have any idea of my fearful relationship with push ups.

I've never done one. Not once. Not full body.

[SUMMARY: I am wuss, hear me roar.]

And, given my experience of the last few days, never any of any kind with any thought of form... just the idea of getting off the ground and back, alignment be damned.§

So one of my imaginary friends and I were discussing the state of our nearly middle-aged boobs and she directed me to the 100 Push Up Training Program.

Which led to some tentative talk of *doing* the 100 Push Up Training Program.

Which led to the stunning revelation that I work best under the twin umbrellas of humiliation and concrete goals.#

[SUMMARY: Thus, the public display of bravado.]

So Thursday or Friday, I tried to do my first push up since the sixth grade.% And found, indeed, doing a full-body push up with good form simply ain't happening for the time being. But those kneesy ones, those I can do.

Nine with impeccable form, to be exact.††

Your job, and you have no choice but to accept, because it's my blog, is to provide the proper accountability for me so I don't just give up and go watch America's Next Top Model instead of doing push ups.

[SUMMARY: Your job is easier than mine.]

So Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays,‡‡ I will be proceeding through the 100 Push Ups program. I will give brief reports the following days to chart my progress and give you a chance to mock me if I slack off.

Imaginary Friend will be there to commiserate... and humiliate. I'm to kick her in the ass if she needs it, she's to make fun of me and my girly weakness if I need it.

ETA: OK, she mentioned me, so she's not *that* ashamed to be seen doing push ups with me. Juno, Enchantress Extraordinaire and Master of the Seventeen Push Ups is my partner in crime. She has a perfume database too, so... y'know... kindred spirits.

Even if she doesn't have a girl crush on Sarah Palin like I do.^

AND reading her post reminded me that y'all should probably check out the pantyhose for men site. There are some inspiring pictures (Kim, meet Fred) and some prose to make you wonder if they can keep a straight face.

You guys just have to check it out.

[SUMMARY: Such excitement!]

Oh, stop. You're going to be jealous when I do my 100 push ups and my nipples are saluting the Blue Angels insted of the garden slugs.

And my bingo wings shall flap no more forever...

Dzongkha - L'Artisan Perfumeur

Marin says: Holy shit. Rum.

Before the alcohol fizzled away, it was all rum, that slightly sickly flat-Coke smell of fermented sugarcane. Then it faded to... rum and coke, a slightly spicier, darker version of the last bookmark.

Then it was a Cuba Libre: rum and coke with a lime. Then it got really spicy: pepper, nutmeg, pepper, bay leaf, pepper. With just a hint of rum and lime in the background.

Later yet, it turned to little but pepper up close, with a little something sweet and nearly floral from an impressionistic distance. Mmmmm.

Then on the next tick, it turned into a soft wood with pepper and a hint of something warm -- amber? Incense resin? But light enough that even I, with my head shop hang-ups, like it. The aggregate is a lot like rich cedar and distant flowers.

Just before bed, I inhaled deeply and got a very nice woody floral. Nothing remarkable about the scent but that it was still there so many hours later.

L'Artisan says: A bewildering fragrance$ inspired by the Kingdom of Bhutan, by the odors of stones and incense from the temples, of leather, spicy chai tea and opulent nature. An invitation to spirituality and an inside journey.

This enveloping fragrance speaks to both women and men and tells a unique story on each skin: that of Dzongkha, the language of Bhutan.§§

Hans says: Dude, that smells like booze. Rum. [letting the alcohol wisp away]. It's totally rum. It smells like my house in college.


Wow. That's totally changed. Now it's spicy. It's totally spicy and... peppery.¶¶

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Good form is key. Without good form, I can do push ups in the style of a banked trout until the cows come home.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): I find them terribly intimidating. I don't know why I picked push ups as my Waterloo, but it's been that way forever. And I've never even done one. Hey... maybe it's fear of the unknown more than fear of being bested by something a ten-year-old can do with aplomb.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): See: banked trout

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): I'm not outing her without her consent. She may not want to be publicly associated with such a wimp. Besides, rumour has it she can do 17 push ups. 17 *real* push ups. And she's taller than me (yes, that makes a difference -- look up your basic physics and get back to me). I have tricep envy.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): 'Cause, you know, without humiliation, I'm released to my own recognizance and my own recognizance would just as soon be drinking Grey Goose. And without concrete goals, I'm perfectly comfortable dismissing the humiliation in the name of ambiguity ("How was I supposed to know what you wanted of me, O my shame? Did you not fail to provide me with a number and a schedule?")

%FOOTNOTE (percented): And I don't remember the President's Council on Physical Fitness being all that worried about form.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): And a tenth in classic banked-trout style.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Starting tonight.

^FOOTNOTE (careted): Minus the guns, people. Minus the guns.

$FOOTNOTE (on the money!): Ha! Got one! What? Did you not think I was bewildered?

§§FOOTNOTE (sugarcane fumes): Does Bhutan do rum?

¶¶FOOTNOTE (eight iron): I love it when we're on the same page. BTW -- I use "eight iron" in my description because Hans almost got a hole-in-one off an eight at the Santa Fe Country Club Saturday. It's an homage.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Revenge of the Hubris-Sniffing Gods


Little Miss Indispensable isn't going to Reno.

Maybe in December.

The boss called yesterday:

"Is the door to your office closed?"

"Why? What are you going to do to me?"

"Nothing that hasn't been done before."

Which made me laugh. Fortunately for me, I not only *am* twelve, I work with a bunch of twelve-year-olds.

Turns out the geologist was way behind everybody else and rushed in with the oil and gas equivalent of "Stop the presses!" yesterday. Thus, nobody is sure where they want to lease anymore, so I'm not going to the federal lease sale.

In Reno.

With the hotel on the river.

With the spa.

With the chocolate mint body scrub.§

When will I learn to knock on wood? Or keep my mouth shut?

[SUMMARY: The gods have nothing better to do than screw with me.]

Today, lunch with the girls and a little minor surgery.#

Tomorrow, housecleaning and overnight murder mystery.

Sunday, football and football.

Monday, an all-new blog use†† and the Broncos on Monday Night Football.‡‡

[SUMMARY: I have the skin of a twenty-five-year-old and the schedule of a seventy-two-year-old.]

In happy news, Hans came back yesterday evening, so he's in the office today.

And at least I didn't have to go to Lusk.

Black March - CB I Hate Perfume (water perfume)

Marin says: The first whiff is wet wood in spring. New leaves and rich, black, wet earth quickly follow.

After a few minutes, the green of the leaves disappears and the ubiquitous "white flowers" peek through. At the same time, a drier, dustier earth comes up, smoky.

Eventually, it becomes a lighter scent, still dirty but woodier and lightly floral. It's not exactly patchouli, but the rich sweetness of it -- lighter than the syrupy patchouli oils in a lot of essential blends -- but definitely patchouli.§§

CBIHP says: A fresh clean scent composed of Rain Drops, Leaf Buds, Wet Twigs, Tree Sap, Bark, Mossy Earth and the faintest hint of Spring Flower Bulbs as pretty and bright as rain drops on black twigs in March.¶¶

Hans says: It smells like pine trees. Or gin.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): When the next federal lease sale takes place. Merry Christmas.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): As is evidenced by the big laugh I got from the boss when I closed the phone call with, "I think I need a cigarette."

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): With the chocolate martini.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): How much more hubris? None. None more hubris.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Hysteroscopy. They just won't leave my uterus alone.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): This is my attempt at a teaser. I'm here to tell you you're going to be wildly disappointed if you spend the weekend on the edge of your seat waiting for it.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Have I mentioned in the last ten minutes how delighted I am to have my football back?

§§FOOTNOTE (tendrils and leaves): Imagine my surprise at finding there's apparently no patchouli at all as the perfumier sees it.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (one stanza, two stanzas): On the CB I Hate Perfume website, there is a poem that goes with the scent. Hell, the poem is the *reason* for the scent. Now I'm going to have to try it again because I didn't look at it with an eye to cracking the mystery -- or tracking down the rest of the poem.

Thursday, September 4, 2008


Which means nothing.

I just kinda liked the word and thought it would look cool popping up over there on the right with the other blogtitles.

Here's what I have for you today:

Like that's news.

[SUMMARY: And the grapes would be sour anyway.]

It's probably largely due to my complete lack of clarity. Two things everybody should know:

  1. Secret Pal sent me enough roll-on patchouli to glaze the streets of Denver and keep the hippies happy... and keep me in a state of half-lidded sexual limbo for weeks. Thank you, Secret Pal! I'll be getting more batteries on my lunch hour!

  2. The next Vampirates sweater will not be for Tallest, Hairiest Nephew's brother... it will be for Brother. Capital B. As in my brother. As in 6'2" and I wish he'd stop working out so I wasn't contemplating a township of black stockinette.§ That's why I need your support for the idea I can finish it in four months.

See? If I just took the marbles out of my mouth, y'all would know what I was talking about.

[SUMMARY: You get what you pay for.]

I'm sure my blogvalue will drop like a Pinto's transmission when the blogiverse gets word that Hans isn't here today.#
Indonesian Patchouli - Yakshi (oil - from Secret Pal)

Marin says: Proving that, like roses,†† different patchoulis have different scents. I'm loving the idea of discovering new concepts out of old ideas.

This version educates me in notes I'd only vaguely noticed and never really put a name to before: licorice, bitter chocolate, benzene.

Usually, patchouli has an black soil base with an overlay of twigs and leaves and tiny, white flowers. This has nothing botanical that I can suss out. It's deeper, rounder and blackter than usual,‡‡ and the scent clings tightly to my wrist... I can't smell it when I'm typing, but the scent doesn't fade even after hours of wear, which makes it kind of personal.

Yakshi says: Indonesian Patchouli finds its strength from the islands of Indonesia. Imagine the heavy, distinct scent wrapping you in a fragrance reminiscent of an exotic Balinese dancer. Fabulous fingers of fragrance evoking a strong, irresistible scent.

Hans says: *cricketcricketcricket*

FOOTNOTE (crossed): Unless you read it as "lack-o-motivation," in which case you'd be on the right track. Heh. Track... trains... locomotive... sorry.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): Because it is better to look good than to write good, darling.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Not that there's anybody I'd rather knit acreage in stockinette for.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): Particularly given that I haven't been able to get two teeny-tiny little Arrrgyle socks done in nearly two years.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): Funny Hans story: He just called to ask me to look up a couple of wells for him, as he wasn't finding the information he was hoping for at the county courthouse in beautiful downtown Lusk. Turns out the boss sent him to the wrong county. Now Hans has to drag his sweet ass (his words) to even beautifuller Douglas, Wyoming, where the wells actually live.

If I get to Reno next week and find I was supposed to be in Honolulu...

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): Speaking of roses, I am currently reading The Emeperor of Scent by Chandler Burr, and there is a footnote in the book (yay, footnotes!) that every variety of rose has a distinct scent all its own.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Ketchup with the Fried and a Small Side of Pig-Lick

I have spent almost as much time in the last two weeks apologising for my bad communication skills as I have actually getting anything across.

Blame Billings.

The people in the Billings office with whom I've had to coordinate on the current sale have driven me to a level of brain activity most often reserved for dog trainers and pre-school teachers.

They ignore half of what I say, all of what I ask and react to the balance as if English is not their first language.

On the flip side, when they ask or tell me anything, I have to ask a dozen questions to figure out what it is they actually want.

So I talk to people like they're two. And everything anyone says to me, I question and prod and refuse to take at face value.

I hate what they've done to me. I used to be a reasonable, smart girl -- albeit given to occasional gusts of breeziness -- and now I'm a paranoid fuckwit.

I'd like to take this public opportunity to apologise to those who have been on the receiving end of my complete lack of logic and warn you it's not quite over.

[SUMMARY: That's my excuse and I'm sticking with it.]

We're just getting started on the November sale.


On a happier note, there is a brief reprieve between the October sale and the November sale in which we're all pretending there is neither a November sale, nor a constant stream of corrections and questions on the October sale.

And I'm going to Reno.


For work.

Hans... poor Hans has to go to Lusk, Wyoming, tomorrow.§ But I get to go to Reno.

Now, my goal in life is to be dispensable. Dispensable people don't have to forego vacations because they can't be spared. Dispensable people don't have to attend client meetings. Dispensable people have disposable time.

On the other had, indispensable people get to go to Reno instead of Lusk. For 24 hours. And not really work.

I'm staying at a spa.

[SUMMARY: It's good to be king.]

Y'all are going to miss me so much.


Tallest, Hairiest Nephew's birthday was Friday. I did, indeed, complete the Vampirates sweater in time.

This is the high fashion shot:

This is the edgier shot, in which THN displays both his mother's wig# and the skull itself beautifully.

Little brothers always have to drag tag along.

See? It was a good Friday.

Now Brother wants his own Vampirate sweater.

[SUMMARY: I'm a sweater factory.]

It's four months 'til Christmas. I can do that, right?

Sampaquita - Ormonde Jayne (edp)

Marin says: It's a floral I can't put my finger on. It blooms into something with a bitter edge, like grapefruit, but not -- maybe a bitter orange -- just the tiniest hint, leading me to chase it around my wrist like my own shadow.

It definitely rolls out and I get an immediate whiff of bark or moss, but it's fleeting and light. There's a vague fruit somewhere under there, but I can't figure out what it may be -- a sweet, chewy fruit like date or fig, not a bright apricot or citrus.

Ormonde Jayne†† says: (National Flower of the Philippines) Literally translated as "I Promise You."

Sampaquita flower is a symbol of purity and fragility, coupled with fidelity and resolve. The scent opens with an unmistakable summer bouquet,$ bursting forth with sun-kissed lychee set on a canvas of bergamot,$ grass oil and magnolia flowers in full seductive bloom. The marriage of these elements, together with a dusky floral heart of sampaquita absolute, freesia and muguet, combine to form a fusillade of fabulous intensity. An inspired quartet of base notes, musk, vetiver, moss$ and ambrette seed, unify and harmonise this sensational summer scent.

- Top: Lychee, grass oil, bergamot and magnolia
- Heart: Sampaquita absolute, freesia, muguet, rose and water lilies
- Base: Musk, vetiver, moss and ambrette seed

Hans says: Now that you told me, it's definitelly Filipinoish. Gotta wait for the roll-out.

Yeah, it smells like the perfume section of the Thai market; it's definitely something familiar.

"It's very different now," I said.

Yeah, it is different. Muskier. Is that a word?

"If you can use 'Filipinoish,' I'm pretty sure you can use 'muskier.' Muskier may even be in the dictionary."

FOOTNOTE (crossed): That's not bad like Michael Jackson bad, that's just plain awful. If I'd meant it the Michael Jackson way, I'd have spelled it "skillz."

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): If only I had a special treat to train them with. And a cattle prod.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): A town so unremarkable it doesn't even have its own website.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): I'm gearing up for the impending season of Top Model. Gotta get the lingo down. Meanwhile, I'd like you to marvel a little how nicely the sweater fits despite the fact that nephew is built like a phone pole and I didn't have actual measurements. Thank you.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): I don't know why eBeth has two wigs lying around the house. I didn't ask.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): If you are the type who is interested (*cougheBethcough* *coughSylviacough* *coughRosiecough*), Ormonde Jayne offers a sampler of all ten Ormonde Jayne scents for about $60, shipped postage free from England. They're lovely... and such nice packaging!

$FOOTNOTE (on the money!): Ha! Got one!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

DNC - Reduce, Re-use, Recycle

I took about 106 pictures.

This is a little less than half. If you click on them, they'll get big.

They weave their way through the odd maintenance of the downtown fire hydrants and the poorly-conceived parking lot price gouging.§

They tour the media blitz, the tourists and the fervent political pamphlet passers.

They skip across the political spectrum from scary to scary on the infrared and ultra-violet ends and a whole lot of in between.

We learned to look at motorcades as our daily due. We watched people hail taxis on street corners.# We watched the blossoming and fading of a whole new world of entrepreneurship.††

Pedicabs came from all over the country. Cops came from all over the state. Helicopters came from... well, presumably from hell and Channel 9.

Downtown was lousy with twinkle lights, bikes, bunting, celebrities,@ senators, balloons, buttons, hybrids, red carpets, pedicabs, riot gear, TiVi cameras, personal cameras, propaganda, flags, signs and just plain people.

Despite all previous apprehension,‡‡ it was a fantastic experience.

My icy, cynical heart is all warm and gooey about the way my city handled this. I was amazed at how polite and cheerful and civilised everybody was.§§ I was grateful the disruptive rioters didn't put up much of a front.¶¶ I was delighted with the energy.##

As dumb as it is, the fact that our very own 'hood, the walking villa with the great restaurants and friendly bars, the mecca of boutique shopping, made national news at more than one outlet for being a "can't miss" slice of Denverana%... well, I'm proud.^

I wanna do it again.†††

Fetish - Neil Morris (Vault) - (edp)

Marin says: This is another one that feels a little like I shouldn't like it -- maybe a little too head shop, maybe a little too amber-and-vanilla. But I *do* like it.

I get a strong undercurrent of patchouli (the dirty kind). The waft is pure amber/incense, but it gets more complex if you get closer. There's a lot going on... copper? Vanilla? Something astringent?

Ooooh, an hour in, there's a good, solid dry wood -- not as sharp and tangy as fresh-cut pine, but maybe a weathered pine log.

Neil Morris says: A warm blend of Myrrh,$ Ambergris, Rosewood, Musk, Oud, Leather,$ Benzoin$ and Patchouli.$

The Perfumed Court says: ...Fetish has notes of Carnation, Benzoin Absolute, Rosewood, Musk, Ambergris, Leather and is a great dark scent.

Hans says: I definitely get a whiff of baby powder, but there's something else. Like... air. Rain air.

FOOTNOTE (crossed): You're welcome.

FOOTNOTE (double-crossed): A few weeks ago, it was the new locking tops. Then on Monday, they opened them up then went out into the street to do something underground. I think it was very nice of them to test the system before the riots.

§FOOTNOTE (swerved): Usually $9 a day, the lot jumped to $25 a day. Nobody parked there except a couple of monthly parkers. It was $25 when Hans and I went to lunch. It was $25 when we came back from lunch. By the time we got up to our offices, it was down to $9 again. Lesson apparently learned.

FOOTNOTE (paragraphed): I collected a LOT of pamphlets. I made a point of it. In fact, some of the pamphleteers were suspicious of my enthusiasm for their products.

#FOOTNOTE (pounded): *Nobody* hails a cab in Denver. You call for cabs in Denver. It shocked the hell out of some of the cabbies. By the end of the week, they were responding like pros.

††FOOTNOTE (ddouble-ccrossed): And more Barack-rock puns than you can shake a donkey at.

@FOOTNOTE (atted): Alicia from the office was stalking celebrities. She had binoculars in the empty office that looks over to the Brown Palace. That's her celebrity sighting board in the pictures.

‡‡FOOTNOTE (doubble-crossssed): Read: bitching. Or, as we like to say, "Breezing."

§§FOOTNOTE (whirlwind political tour): People mostly watched where they were going, and when they didn't, they said, "Excuse me." I can't even get that at my local grocery store. It was totally impressive. I'm not a big fan of Obama, but I did feel a twinge of hope all my own.

¶¶FOOTNOTE (fists raised in triumph): More tear gas would have sucked.

##FOOTNOTE (Give us a pound! Make it 'splode!): Like NYC, only actively friendly. And sunny.

%FOOTNOTE (percented): Pertaining to America = Americana. Pertaining to Denver = Denverana.

^FOOTNOTE (careted): The fact that it will probably boost housing values is just icing on the pride cake.

†††FOOTNOTE (not as cross as I look): Like a small child on her first merry-go-round ride: "Again! Do it again!"

$FOOTNOTE (on the money): I'm giving myself a lot of credit here. I'm saying the benzoin is the astringent part, the myrrh is a classic incense component and every time I think copper there's leather involved. So maybe two points -- a half for each note. But a full point for patchouli.

Speaking of patchouli, I got a big ol' patchouli roll-on from Secret Pal out of the mailbox this morning. Thanks, Secret Pal!