My first fake perfume was when we, as a family, were duped outside Harrods on the street outside about thirty years ago. A raucous cockney screamed out the details of the bargain ; w hile a deceptor sprayed a real perfume – right before our eyes. Smelling it in the air, I bought the false water, which, when opened back home, was clearly nothing more than a cleverly wrought out con trick.
My second fake perfume(s) were those you see pictured above, bought today from Book Off/Hard Off/ Hobby Off in Fujisawa, a three story junkfest of used goods that I can’t stay in for more than five minutes because of the infernally repetitive ‘theme tune’ it has on repeat that in all literalness I think is akin to mental torture.
That is a whole other debate though (speaking of which, and of absolute fakeness, tonight is the first ‘presidential’ debate – JESUS) : but it might account for why I didn’t check out these two perfumes more carefully before ‘committing to purchasing them’.
I had always wanted Penhaligon’s Gardenia in passing. And there it suddenly was, unexpectedly : for ¥800 : a steal at eight dollars. And ‘Elizabethan Rose’, which I had never smelled in its latest recreation, for ¥1000 : why the hell not ? ( I sadly and literally was, like Emma Bovary, down to my final coins, an embarrassingly precarious situation in which I wasn’t even sure I would have enough train fare to get back home nor be able to afford nourishment for the evening’s teaching ahead )
– but such is perfume addiction. Leaving my house this morning, putting my pretty Santa Maria Novella pot pourri by the open window to maximize its rose-spicy, slightly rotting herbaceous effect ( it has been a very extravagant month, what with Duncan’s birthday and all : tomorrow is pay day:::::TF) it struck me : do I actually have an actively, usable rose perfume in my collection at this particular moment in time ?
I had to admit, that I didn’t think that I actively do. So I physically spent my final pennies ( caught counting, frantically, my remaining change from my suit pocket and bag in the disabled toilet praying that there weren’t surveillance cameras on this quite possibly counterfeit bullshit ; the gardenia, on closer; on the way home inspection, just smelling like a cheap Marc Jacobs gardenia knockoff ( or is it just a bad reformulation? ( : Penhaligon’s experts : align!) ); the Rose, for all I know, as authentically intended, a bit woozy and sandalwoody, not entirely bad, and a possible contender as a toilet spray – but the labels are a little bit wonky, and it DOES smell a little bit fat and gregarious, for an Elizabethan Rose…..