Thursday, April 28, 2011

SOTD: Hermes Hermessence Osmanthe Yunnan, and falling out of scent love

When I first tried Osmanthe Yunnan I loved it. It wasn't in my top five, but I quite understood Luca Turin's very high rating, and I enjoyed spraying it lavishly. I loved it so much on the first sniff that I have a clear technicolor memory of walking away from the Hermes boutique on a sunny San Francisco day. I even considered springing for a full bottle, instead of the bitty 15ml one.

Then, I'm not quite sure when, my attitude changed to "Meh. Kinda sweet." And it's never recovered. I try it now and then in the hope of falling back in love, but, no. Meh. Kinda sweet.

I've finally concluded that the original love was not for Osmanthe Yunnan, but for osmanthus, a scent that I wasn't previously familiar with. Novelty carried me through a few wearings, but now I want more side dishes with my creamy sweet flowers.

Review Roundup: Is here.

Image: By Lyzzy. Wikimedia Commons.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

SOTD: Estee Lauder Jasmine White Moss

Do you like NCIS? I tend to dislike military shows, but I like Mark Harmon and I adore Abby. I like the idea that a geek can have that much style. So I keep watching it, even though the plot itself rarely interests me.

What's my point? DiNozzo mentioned Estee Lauder in a recent rerun, which reminded me of the existence of Jasmine White Moss. So I wore it today. Not much of a point, really, but I'm trying to get back into that regular-perfume-blogging thing, so I'm licensing myself for pointless rambling.

So. Jasmine White Moss. Sometimes it's too "big" and sometimes it's just right. Today, a sunny but medium-cool day with the Thalia daffodils still blooming, it was just right, in a girly way. I didn't bother to dress up for it, but I did find myself paying just a bit more attention to my hair than I usually do.

Review Roundup: Is here.

Image: Wikimedia Commons.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

SOTD: None. And ramblish rambling. And a discovery.

I didn't wear any perfume today. I'm not sure why not.

I just finished Dakota, by Martha Grimes. I can't decide if I'm perfectly happy with it as a novel, or if it's too focused on its animal cruelty message to qualify as a full novel. Either way, it's making me think about becoming a vegetarian.

Am I serious about that? Apparently not entirely serious, because I fried chicken wings today. On the other hand, the book didn't address chickens; the food-animal scenes were about pigs. Pigs are supposed to be smart. Social. Intelligent, possibly more intelligent than dogs.

I would probably be happy enough to give up bacon in exchange for chicken skin, but that still returns me to the ethical issues--is it just plain wrong to eat meat? Is it OK to eat meat but wrong to eat the factory-farmed meat that's almost all you can get at the grocery? Sure, the labels claim that the chickens, for example, are "free-range", but as I understand it, all that means is that they were allowed to wander around in a crowded building rather than being kept in a tiny cage; the space-per-chicken isn't exactly generous, and they're not contentedly gazing up at a sunny sky.

I once went on a long Google search to find some sort of cruelty-free certification for meat, and a way to buy meat that qualified. At the time, I found a certification but failed to find a source for the meat, but that could have changed...

Hey. Wow. Yes, something has changed. Organic Smart Chicken is certified humanely raised? When did that happen? I am well and thoroughly surprised. I assumed that if I did find a source of humanely raised chicken, I'd have to pay a small fortune for it and quite likely mail-order it frozen. But, no, it's right down the street at the Co-Op and it's... well, it's not cheap, but it's not bad.

Wow. This is cool.

OK, ramble over. I'm going to go read up on precisely what "humanely raised" means.

Image: Wikimedia Commons.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

SOTD: Bois 1920 Sushi Imperiale

I know, I know, it's a Christmas perfume, so what am I doing wearing it for Easter? But I saw it, and my mind said "Holiday", and I was a little sad and wanted those tapdancy sparkles, so I sprayed it on. And it worked. I don't know that I'll be wearing it much more in the spring, but it worked.



I seem to have little to say about Easter. I've never been the religious type; to me, Easter is about chocolate and daffodils and tulips. And sometimes about gardening; I considered going out and planting some seeds today, but I turned lazy and stayed that way. I'm faintly disappointed in myself; next year, I'll plan ahead to do something involving pastel colors and sunshine.

Image: Wikimedia Commons.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Blogging: From Rant to Recruitment

Remember this post, about the sorry state of discussion of blogging? (As opposed to discussion of SEO and pay per click and AdSense and other blogging-for-profit topics?) Remember the forum that I thought was permanently drowned by backlink spammers?

Well, I'm not really withdrawing that diagnosis, but the site owner is taking the idea of a subforum about nonprofit blogging seriously. So rather than wait around for that subforum to get created, I thought I'd make an attempt at starting some actual discussion of blogging on the existing forums over there.

So I posted two posts, both of which, if you were to read them, might strike you as somewhat familiar, because much of the text has appeared on this blog. I'm self-plagarizing because, frankly, it's hard for me to wholeheartedly write something brand new when I'm fairly confident that the response will be "Thanks for sharing. Click here for the best prices on UGG boots." This is no doubt a failing in me as a writer, but there it is.

So, getting (slooowly) to the point: Wanna come over there and discuss, either in those threads or starting your very own shiny fresh new threads? Huh? Huh? I can't promise that there will be a healthy flowering of discussion and in fact, frankly, I suspect that we'll just end up fleeing from the rising tide of spam. I'm trying to be honest here. But the site does have a fair little bit of traffic, it has very good moderators who would like to see more discussion, and it gets a number of non-spambot posts, even if most of those posts are, yet again, about how to get rich from your blog. So it's the highest-odds possibility, that I know of, for some real blog discussion.

So if you care to wander over, the site in question is the forum at Bloggeries, I'm ChickenFreak over there too, and my new posts are in the Content subforum.  I have plenty of posts in other subforums, too, but (going with that honesty thing again) my other posts there tend to have the mood of an elderly crone threatening the whippersnappers with her cane.

Come on over!

Image: Wikimedia Commons.

Link: Declutter Of The Day, and that Wordpress Thing

So, I noticed, during the film festival, that Himself was doing a lot of fine WordPress blogging from his phone. I was jealous--I'm unable to do that with Blogspot.

So I've decided to give Wordpress a try, and the logical blog to migrate was the one that I've neglected into nonexistence--poor old Declutter Of The Day. So DCOTD has restarted on Wordpress, and I wanted to offer a pointer here.

Image: Wikimedia Commons.

Friday, April 22, 2011

SOTD: Parfumerie Generale Iris Taizo, and Cheese

I may be back to normal.

Or I may not.

But I'm wearing perfume. When I finished the work week (woohoo!) earlier this evening and opened the bread boxes in which I keep the main body of the perfume collection, Iris Taizo demanded that I wear it. I wasn't in an Iris Taizo mood at all, but it seemed so set on its purpose that I hesitated to contradict. So I'm wearing it right now, and a few hours later, it's just starting the transition from cynically bitter to gently sweet.

After that, Himself and I went out, and ate seaweed salad, and hazelnut prawns, and several other things, and, perhaps most importantly for the character of this post, drank lemon drops. Two of them. I did, that is. He drank other things.

I don't drink much. Not much at all. It turns out that two lemon drops, one of them consumed with not much more than a few soybeans to stand against them, are enough to make my brain feel as if it's been gently dislodged from my spinal cord and tossed into some sort of sweet, bobbing liquid.

I have been of the opinion for quite some time that someone should pass a law that all alcoholic beverages should be served with a cube of cheese, in order to give the consumer a fighting chance against the intoxicating effects. Or perhaps the customer should be required to consume the cube of cheese before being handed the glass--brandish the ID, eat the cheese, then imbibe. My current swimmy brain is now all the more convinced of the wisdom of this policy.

I was not offered any cheese. And I can assure you that soybeans are an insufficient shield against a determined lemon drop. But apparently I can still type. Though I may need to re-read this tomorrow to see if that's really true.

That is all.

Review Roundup: Is here.

Image: By Ranveig. Wikimedia Commons.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Rambling: Everything's really loud, or, why am I posting this?

I can hear.

This is not unprecedented--I can mostly hear most of the time. But at the moment, it feels like a small miracle, because I can't remember when I could hear this well.

See, I have problem ears. They get clogged. Perhaps four times a year, I wander around tilting one ear at anyone who tries to talk to me, because the other ear is out of commission. I frantically dose the misbehaving ear with ear drops, or attack it with those rubber bulb things, and eventually it consents to function again.

This time, both ears went on strike, and after a week of repeating every other sentence to me, Himself insisted that it was time to seek out professional help. After learning that the fancy ENT has a long wait for appointments, we drove off to the walk-in clinic, where they applied tools and fancy water-blasting gadgets, and now I can hear. (Himself gets substantial He Was Right And Listen To Him Next Time points from this incident.)

But it's not just that I can hear better than I could hear a week ago. I can hear better than I have in weeks, perhaps months, quite possibly years. I don't recall ever before noticing that when I speak in the car, there's an echo. I never noticed how many different sounds my keyboard make as I'm typing it. The whole world seems to be at almost too high a volume.

It's surprisingly exciting.

That is all.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Rambling: Friday

It's Friday.


I will, despite firm resolutions otherwise, be engaging in a few hours of useful activity this weekend, but only a few. In the other hours, I will be doing nothing more useful than reading books, eating junk food, and possibly blogging. After weeks of moving and rushing around and even the fun but highly scheduled activity of the film festival, that's going to be nice.


Nap time.

Image: By WildFeuer. Wikimedia Commons.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Rambling: Rearranging the Furniture

When I was a kid, every few months I would rearrange my room, just for the sake of rearranging. I'd haul chair and bureau and desk and bookshelf around (the bed was too big to move) and move stuff from drawers to shelves and from shelves to drawers, and put the little Japanese dolls where the ceramic elephant was, and so on.

Lately, as I slowly return to the blogs after my semi-absence, I've been thinking of making changes. I'm thinking of reincorporating Rambling Chicken with ChickenFreak's Obsession. Or ChickenFreak's Obsession with Rambling Chicken. I've already created a WordPress version of Declutter Of The Day, though I have yet to post there. I wondered why I wanted to do this, but now I realize that there is no why--it's just time to rearrange.

Will I actually change anything? I dunno; I'm waiting to see.

Image: By SOCIALisBETTER. Wikimedia Commons.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Rambling: About to be submerged

So, just as the flurry and chaos settles down, it's time for the Ashland Independent Film Festival!

We attend every year, and while I might be inclined to a fairly low-key level of attendance, Himself is firmly in favor of attending every single time slot. Five days, five time slots a day, minus tomorrow morning. (So what's going on tomorrow morning, huh? That's what we want to know. Are there more important people than us getting special private screenings, huh, huh?) And usually more than one film per time slot.

I'm looking forward to dozens of films washing all of my personal fuss and flurry out of my head. We'll see if I blog madly about them, or vanish entirely until Tuesday. (And which blog to blog in? Last year all my AIFF posts were in The Other Blog. Is this becoming my general blog again? Is the daily Scent Of The Day gone forever? What's the deal here? If I don't know, who does? Do these blogs get good gas mileage?)

Image: Wikimedia Commons.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Perfume Rambling: Scenting on the run

So, as I mentioned, we've had a busy and stressful few weeks. Requesting permission to move, biting my nails until I got it, boxing everything we've ever owned (OK, maybe not everything), talking to realtors, moving, rearranging the house to make room for some of the stuff, stashing the rest, and taking not nearly enough time off for the process. And that was just one of the things going on.

Once things settled down a bit, it occurred to me that a post about perfume choices during busy times might be worth writing. When there's limited time or energy or inclination to make a careful, considered choice based on my moods, what do I wear?

Parfumerie Generale L'Eau Rare Matale, that's what.

Oh, I wore one or two other things - if I look at my Twitter feed, I see that I wore Fou d'Absinthe on 3/25, for example, and I seem to remember wearing some thick floral on another day, and regretting it. But in general, lately, if I'm scented, it's with L'Eau Rare Matale. That was true in either home--from a decant in the one we moved out of, and from the original bottle in the one we're finally permanently living in.

So, why? What is it about L'Eau Rare Matale? Does this mean that if I ever went to a signature scent, this would be the one? Is that possible? Not No. 19, not Cristalle, not White Rose, not Un Lys, not Tubereuse Couture, but instead this biting, charred-wood, angry-tea scent?


Now, I could argue that it's a mood thing. That when I'm busy and grumpy and rushing around, I want something sharp and bracing. But that ignores the fact that I've actually been finding L'Eau Rare Matale very comforting. It doesn't feel like a challenge, it feels like a friend. When I did take a moment to put on some perfume, I not only chose this one, I put on a lot of it, doubling or tripling my usual two sprays.

A side thought comes to me - I recently saw a reference to the Little Brown Dress Project, a project where a woman made a brown dress, and wore it every single day for a year. I find myself comparing L'Eau Rare Matale to the brown dress. Both brown, both earthy and simple and lacking in frills and glitter, but also both with a distinctive style, and just a tiny bit of a "you wanna make something of it?" attitude. Maybe I should try wearing L'Eau Rare Matale for a year.

Very funny. It's just the lemon drops talking. But all the same, it's interesting that this, of all things, is my too-rushed-for-perfume perfume. I'll have to think it over some more.

Image: By Maylene Thyssen, Wikimedia Commons.

Rambling: Cocktails and Duke Ellington

Tonight, we went to Standing Stone in Ashland.

I reconfirmed that a lemon drop (the cocktail, not the hard candy) is far, far more effective at combating stress than a gallon of milk. I make a point of forgetting this fact, outside the occasional occasion.

I listened to musicians (around my parents' age) play Big Bands, and watched patrons (around my parents' age) dance to it, under a disco ball. I watched an itty bitty toddler in hand-knit wooly garments dance in the jumpingupanddownreallyreallyfast style.

I turned briefly sentimental. I wished that my parents had been one of those happy old couples. I remembered when I was that size and used to dance like that.  I'm blaming this on the lemon drops.

I considered learning to dance. I stole Himself's fries.

Saturday night in Ashland. I approve.

Image: Wikimedia Commons.