Saturday, March 31, 2007

"That Merle"

Happy Birthday, Merle Sneed!

(Photo: Merle Sneed playing the zither at his church in 2006 )

Some of you might know Merle best as the star of a popular sixties sitcom.

Plot summary for
"That Merle" (1964)
Merle Sneed is a struggling zither player living in New York City. In between trying to find jobs and practicing the zither he finds time for his girlfriend, Donna Hollinger, and his parents, Steed and Samantha Sneed.

My favorite "That Merle" episode is the one where Merle takes a job as a catering assistant. He ends up serving little pies at a tension-filled mob luncheon. Merle eats one of the Nesselrode pies, so there are not enough to go around. One of the mob bosses takes offense, and a gang war begins.

Remember the "That Merle" theme song?

"Diamonds, daisies, snowflakes, that Merle!
Zen koans, raindrops, springtime... is that Merle...
He's tinsel on a tree! He's everything that every guy should be!
Fables, popcorn, draft beer, that Merle!
Cowboys, bluejeans, "his way."... is that Merle,
He's not flyin' alone but luckily for you--
If you find a great guy like Merle, one who knows
how to treat a girl, then you'll have your Merle too!
"That Merle!"

Of course, Merle was totally ripped off when his show was replaced with "That Girl" in 1966. they even stole his theme song, replacing lyrics like "draft beer" with "white wine" and other little changes. Many of the episode plotlines and main character's mannerisms and gestures were shockingly similar, too. (This is why Merle does not care very much for Marlo Thomas.) Merle did not let the lousy turn of events get him down though, he went on to make a pilot for a new show in 1967 called "The Ghost and Mrs. Merle." Finally, Merle found himself fully embracing the zither, and he said he'd found complete happiness once he began living "Outside of the Squawk Box."

Happy Birthday and a big slice of Nesselrode Pie to Merle Sneed!

Friday, March 30, 2007

Bob Dylan: Fragile

I guess he must be as fragile as the rest of us, but because of his fame he has had to develop a protective shell. Maybe we all develop them as we get 'street smarts'. Imagine your own protective shell. Can you describe what it might look like if it took a solid form?

"I started out on burgundy
But soon hit the harder stuff
Everybody said they'd stand behind me
When the game got rough
But the joke was on me
There was nobody even there to call my bluff
I'm going back to New York City
I do believe I've had enough."
--Bob Dylan

Thursday, March 29, 2007

The Red & The Black

Some glass sculptors design perfume bottles that actually suit the contents of the bottle very well. The Samsara bottle by Robert Granai is shaped like a Khmer dancer. Habanita, in a black Lalique bottle with bas relief nudes, is perfection. Dior's red and black bottle for Hypnotic Poison is a good choice for the bewitching warm woodsy scent. Flower by Kenzo is supposed to feel light and bendy. Delices de Cartier is a warm, tart cherry, a boozy 'Kirsch' scent. Since the house of Cartier is famous for designing jewelry, it makes sense that the bottle should look like an ornate cherry.

The finial on the cherry was inspired
by a vintage Cartier brooch
from the 1920's.

Nicely designed red perfume bottles with good scents
inside are hard to find. I got lucky with this group.

"Little red wagon
Little red bike
I ain't no monkey but I know what I like."
--Bob Dylan

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Bob Dylan & Strange Ghosts

Ghosts. People don't always believe in them, but are always afraid of them even if they don't exist. A friend told me the "prime places" to see a ghost are in mirrors or in window glass. I said that those were also "prime places" to see reflections. She said people smell actual perfume scents when some ghosts are present, or they feel a terrible chill, or they feel as if they are being watched, and the creepiest of all, to me, is 'the nudge' The nudge is the ghost poking at you or pushing you. The nudge might be ghost language for "It is time for you to leave now." or "Let's dance!"

A number of perfumes have been presented as ghostly, but what could that mean beyond a catchy name for marketing purposes? Since fragrances are invisible, they invite ghostly comparisons. But I'd like ghosts that you could see, the ones that climb up and down stairs, or walk up and down passageways. Ghosts that seem to float. Ghosts that are clothed in white with some powdery air swirling around/through them. I'm still waiting for a glimpse.

To me, a perfume that is ghostly would be one that takes you someplace far away in time. Or maybe a perfume that is powdery and white in the mind's eye.

"The act of writing requires a constant plunging back into the shadow of the past where time hovers ghost-like."
--Ralph Ellison

When I read this quote I thought of how hard it is for me to write a daily journal. I do much better at looking backwards into the past, where the absurdity of events has been softened or explained somewhat by the passage of time. I can relate the incident without the emotion of the moment clouding/confusing it. But the downside is, that unexpected things do lurk in the memory shadows. Little surprises.

"The light in this place is so bad
Making me sick in the head
All the laughter is just making me sad
The stars have turned cherry red
I'm strumming on my gay guitar
Smoking a cheap cigar
The ghost of our old love has not gone away
Don't look like it will anytime soon
You left me standing in the doorway crying
Under the midnight moon."
-- Bob Dylan

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

78 Degrees + 8 Snowballs

Took these pics today...
Snow drifts still exist, here and there.

We placed snowballs here and there, and watched them melt.

It was already 72 degrees in the morning! Hopefully it will not stay this hot. It is still March after all. Normal temps are 24 degrees lower. Saw sailboats on the Hudson today!

Hot sunshine, new greenery, dead autumn leaves and snow drifts melting ... all at once. This makes for a lot of different smells for me to sniff!

"A song will lift
As the mainsail shifts
And the boat drifts on to the shoreline.
And the sun will respect
Every face on the deck,
The hour that the ship comes in.

Then the sands will roll
Out a carpet of gold
For your weary toes to be a-touchin'.
And the ship's wise men
Will remind you once again
That the whole wide world is watchin'."
--Bob Dylan

Monday, March 26, 2007

What Were They Thinking?

I have no idea why Omnia by Bulgari looks like something from a 1970's office supply store. (conjoined typewriter ribbons?) Omnia is a really nice scent, a spicy chai tea fragrance.

Castelbajac is just weird. First of all, the outer packaging is hard plastic. You may need the jaws of life to pry it open. A quilted glass hot water bottle? Why? And it will not spray unless you pull the ON charm. Now for the weirdness that is the scent itself: If you like freshly washed linens and you also like almonds, then you might like this scent. (A hint of soap and wet linens flapping on a clothesline on a brisk day is the first smell out of the bottle.) It settles into a nice light almond fragrance, but is way too cool for winter or chilly rainy days. There is a little heliotrope in the blend, too. Got this one as a gift several months back, and have not had the opportunity to wear it during the dog days of summer (those awful, muggy days when smelling like fresh linen in a cool breeze could be theraputic.) This is a unisex scent and I could definitely see a man using it. Very clean and fresh.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Back to Bob Dylan Basics

This is a painting I quickly painted for some event with half dried out tempera paints. (Work with what you have.) It is the only painting of Bob I have ever painted, and I added myself in the corner: my only self portrait, so far. I have a few perfume reviews swirling around inside my furry little head that should be posted here in a few days. I have been doing a little 'Spring' cleaning, looking out the window at all the bird activity, and re-reading Bob's book "Chronicles Volume One" which is the best Bob-related book I have ever read. I learned many things from this book including:

1. Keeping detailed journals all your life is a good idea.
2. Bob had a one-legged Turkish grandmother.
3. Sometimes he thinks about things like hot dogs and marshmallows.

"It was freezing winter with a snap and sparkle in the air, nights full of blue haze. It seemed like ages ago since I'd lay in the green grass and it smelled of true summer--glints of light dancing off the lakes and yellow butterflies on the black tarred roads." --Bob Dylan (from Chronicles Volume One)

Friday, March 23, 2007


I have been kind of depressed.

(Fred's death, the bus trip to Pennsylvania, the grey skies...)

So I decided to host a huge party for everyone!

All of you!

That would cheer me up fast!

I overstocked the bar with all sorts of goodies, called the caterers and told them not to hold back, bring on their best eats!

I placed a huge bakery order, and confirmed that the band would arrive on time.

I rented an entire amusement park for us all, for a 24 hour party! And the pavilion is huge.

Wait til you see how I decorated it ! At dusk it lights up with a zillion fairy lights!

A great place for us to gather, to dance, eat, drink, and be merry.

The virtual party I had planned to have for you today has been canceled due to a virtual flood. The virtual pavilion has been damaged beyond repair. What fun it would have been.

"Now the moon is almost hidden
The stars are beginning to hide
The fortunetelling lady
Has even taken all her things inside
All except for Cain and Abel
And the hunchback of Notre Dame
Everybody is making love
Or else expecting rain
And the Good Samaritan, he's dressing
He's getting ready for the show
He's going to the carnival tonight
On Desolation Row."
--Bob Dylan

and me, i think i'll try some aromatherapy to cheer myself up. haven't worn any perfume for a few days, so maybe splash on some Guerlain and go stand in the rain...

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Highway 61 Revisited

Fred Wong's funeral service took place yesterday, out on Highway 61, in Centralia, Pennsylvania. People from all over the world came to pay their last respects. For those of you who knew and loved Fred, but could not attend the service, I am posting some photos, allowing you to grieve a bit, and post a tribute to Fred if you are so inclined.

"...Well Mack the Finger said to Louie the King
I got forty red white and blue shoe strings
And a thousand telephones that don't ring
Do you know where I can get rid of these things
And Louie the King said let me think for a minute son
And he said yes I think it can be easily done
Just take everything down to Highway 61..."
--Bob Dylan

It was difficult to get around, as there were huge steaming sinkholes out on Highway 61, and we were afraid to drive too close to the actual town. Even walking, the ground would cave in a bit, and fellow mourners would have to help each other out of little 3 or 4 ft. deep sinkholes.

Fred's properties in Centralia. The area had some sort of landfill/mine fire many years ago, and apparently it is still burning underground because of all of the coal deposits. The real estate deals were too good to be true, so Fred bought a lot of property there. He planned to start businesses there, and "bring Centralia back to its former glory." That was his dream.

The area was steamy hot and smelled terrible, and some mourners passed out from carbon monoxide or something.

I took this picture at the Fred Wong Tribute Luncheon. We ate pizza, oreos, and some sort of hot dog & cheese casserole. Someone spiked the hot Dr. Pepper with tequila, so people got a little rowdy. We pulled ourselves together for the hike back to Centralia for the final viewing of the casket and ceremony, where Kurt (from the blog 'Other People Exist' ) spoke at length about his relationship with Fred. Kurt's eulogy brought tears to everyone's eyes. Yes, it was that moving. It was the only angry, fiery speech--it was his "Fred Had A Dream!" speech. Most of the other speeches were long and boring, and there was a lot of standing around just breathing fumes.

Fred's Wife, Mrs. Susan Yu Wong, wanted an open casket, but Fred's body had been splattered on Madison Avenue and was in pieces. Still, Mrs. Wong loved the soft fuzzy fabric lining of the casket and kept insisting on an "open casket" ceremony. So the funeral director stored Fred's body in a Hefty bag in the cloakroom and just had the empty casket in the viewing area. People lined up to admire the casket. The casket was made in China and was beautiful. Mrs. Wong kept telling everyone that Chinese caskets were superior to American ones and also cost $700 less on average. Fred loved to save money, she explained. The Hefty bag came up missing somehow, and in the end the pallbearers carried the empty casket to the graveyard.
Frederick Norman Wong, age 32. RIP.

"He never done no wrong
He never done no wrong
A thousand miles from home
And he never harmed no one
And he was a friend of mine."
--Bob Dylan

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Better Loving Through Chemistry

"Johnny's in the basement
Mixing up the medicine..."
--Bob Dylan

Modern romance still depends on chemistry. You can place a personal ad or be witty and clever via e mail, but until you meet someone, look into their eyes, shake their hand or sit next to them, the chemistry is not there.
Scientists have discovered we cannot be truly happy with someone unless we are attracted to their natural smell.
As added proof, all of the pheromone perfumes failed to work any magic. We may be modernized, computerized, and sanitized, but our bodies still have some ancient ways about them. Our bodies know what we like on some uncivilized level.

Once you fall in love with someone, you come to associate their second layer of scent with the first real human layer. Actually, what you are smelling is the two working together. If your love wears Hanae Mori, and wears it well, you associate it with her in a positive way. If another wears it, you may enjoy smelling it, without being attracted to that person. It will smell different even if you can't really work it out that it does smell different.

Hanae Mori's Butterfly created by perfumer Bernard Ellena

Hanae Mori, the genius of Japanese fashion and Parisian haute couture, wished for a perfect fragrance to wear anytime.
The fragrance is a blend of berries, flowers, and woods, with a strong presence of vanilla and almond. A warm, sweet, woodsy Oriental.

True chemical attraction doesn't mean you have found your soul mate, however. You can still fall for the wrong person.
Still the ancient lure is hard to resist and gets people into trouble.

"The empress attracts you but oppression distracts you
And it makes you feel violent and strange...
...Memory, ecstasy, tyranny, hypocrisy
Betrayed by a kiss on a cool night of bliss
In the valley of the missing link
And you have no time to think."
--Bob Dylan

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Sponge Bob Dylan

This is a rare Sponge Bob Boxer Shorts doll from the early 1970's. There was a proposed cartoon where Singer/Songwriter 'Sponge Bob Dylan' is chased by packs of groupies and is always trying (sometimes unsuccessfully) to keep his boxer shorts on. Although it never got past the storyboard stage, cartoon producers did not forget Sponge Bob. The complex and mysterious Sponge Bob character went through some major transformations before finally making it famous in the 'Toon world as the simple Sponge Bob we all know today.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Bob Dylan and Chedwick

Spending a little quality time together in early Spring.

"Time passes slowly up here in the mountains,
We sit beside bridges and walk beside fountains,
Catch the wild fishes that float through the stream,
Time passes slowly when you're lost in a dream....

...Time passes slowly up here in the daylight,
We stare straight ahead and try so hard to stay right,
Like the red rose of summer that blooms in the day,
Time passes slowly and fades away."
-- Bob Dylan

L'Art et la Matiere: The Rose

Rose Barbare by Guerlain is a drunken rose with black lacquer stems and thorns. Now that I got that weird image out of the way I will say it is such an interesting rose that I need no other rosy scent. It tops all the rest, so that simplifies things in my perfume cupboard a little bit. ( L'Art et la Matière line of fragrances: Outstanding. ) Rose Barbare, created by perfumer Francis Kurkdjian, is all sensuality. It starts off with a boozy note that is very long lasting. It is also spicy and earthy. It blooms softly on the skin, and you might imagine you're in a rose garden after a rain, the sun's warmth on the soil and petals creating an almost hothouse effect.

(I have already reviewed the others in Guerlain's L'Art et la Matière: Cuir Beluga, Bois D'Armenie and Angelique Noire)

Maeve Brennan (in photograph, above) was on staff at The New Yorker for 30 years or more. Her short fiction has been compared to Flaubert's. Maeve was probably the main inspiration for the Holly Golightly character in Truman Capote's Breakfast at Tiffany's.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Bob Dylan and James Joyce

I'm not sure I like Bob with his hair cut short and all slicked down like that.

When Bob visited the James Joyce Museum, a curator urged him to take a ride on James Joyce's bicycle. Bob was amazed at this offer, rode a few feet and stopped. The curator told him to take it for a proper ride, so Bob pedalled around Dublin a bit...on James Joyce's bike! That is what I call a true celebrity 'perk'. When I visited the museum, I was not allowed to touch the bike, ( or even point at it. ) --but not all celebrities get to ride the bike.
"Oh, Good God, No!" said the curator when I asked if Ben Affleck would be allowed to ride it. Actually Bob is the only person that was allowed to ride the bike in some years. Why? The curator sighed. "Well, I like Bob a great deal, he's stopped in here a few times and is always a polite and charming fellow."

St. Patrick's Day is an excellent day to stay in and read Irish literature. That's my plan. That, or get drunk, pee my pants, and throw up on Main Street.

Watch out where the leprechauns go and don't you eat no green snow!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Madison Avenue This Morning

Just starting to snow in the city.

Bob Dylan is Back!

and smelling all pyschedelic vanilla-y, minty. and he is teeny tiny.

This Post has no Photo

This is a personal ad that ran in a NYC paper a while back. Someone pointed it out to me as funny, but I found it a little disturbing. I think the guy is asking a lot.


Witty, together Greenwich Village literatus,
70's, known to take a pint or two, seeks
comely sexagenarian wench,
gym fit body mass index,
strong interest in language,
for wining, dining, strenuous mat work,
cultural badinage, anti bush rant. BOX 18457

Just how into the whole Gandalf thing is he? Does he carry a wand? Is he 'known to take a pint or two' daily? Hourly? How much anti bush rant can any female take?

If you had to write your own personal ad, what would it say?

Monday, March 12, 2007

Be in Love With Your Life

1.Scribbled secret notebooks, and wild typewritten pages, for yr own joy
2 Submissive to everything, open, listening
3.Try never get drunk outside yr own house
4.Be in love with your life
5.Something that you feel will find its own form

(Top five from a list of thirty essentials for living by Jack Kerouac)

A real haiku's gotta be as simple as porridge and yet make you see the real thing, like the greatest haiku of them all probably is the one that goes 'The sparrow hops along the veranda, with wet feet.' By Shiki. You see the wet footprints like a vision in your mind and yet in those few words you also see all the rain that's been falling that day and almost smell the wet pine needles. (JK)

Catfish fighting for his life, 

and winning, 

Splashing us all.


A Little Bio:
Jean-Louis Lebris de Kerouac was born into a French speaking household on March 12, 1922 in Lowell, Massachusetts. His parents had come to New England from Quebec to find work in the mills. Jean-Louis began to learn English in 1928 and spent a great deal of his childhood at the Lowell Library. Later he would attend Columbia University in NYC, and join the Navy. He often lived with his parents in Ozone Park, Queens. In and around NYC he met the rest of a group who would later become known as The Beat Poets, and began to travel and publish novels based on his adventures. He spent a great deal of time in California and lived for awhile in Mexico. He seemed most comfortable living among the down and out. His books, which were not well received at the time by critics, tell the story of his life. He died at the age of 47, in St. Petersburg, Florida. His works had an astonishing effect on American culture.

"Great things are not accomplished by those who yield to trends and fads and popular opinion.


Sunday, March 11, 2007

The Dharma Bums

Photo: Allen Ginsberg and Bob Dylan Visit Kerouac's grave in Lowell, Massachusetts.

Tomorrow, March 12th, is Jack Kerouac's birthday and I will be doing a Massive Tribute Post for him. In the meantime I have added two links, one of Johnny Depp (who played Kerouac in a film) reading a short poem of Jack's, and a clip from a 1959 Television Interview with Jack.

Photo: Jack Kerouac Memorial Park in Lowell. Every year the city hosts a Kerouac Festival that lasts 4 to 6 days.

Bob Dylan: Jokerman

I've been to a few Bob Dylan concerts where he has told a silly joke and cracked himself up while half the audience is saying "What?" The other half of the audience is laughing like the joke was funny.

Example: "I was talking to Neil Young yesterday and he said to me, 'Bob, you just don't hear cool music on the radio anymore.' and I said to Neil, I says 'sure you just... you just need to stick your radio in the refrigerator."

Audience: "What? Hahaha What? Heh Heheh! What? Giggle What? Hoo Boy that was funny! What? What did he say? What? Huh? What?

On other occasions, Bob has introduced his back-up singers as "My ex-wife, my next wife, my girlfriend, and my fiancee."
and his drummer as 'the best drummer...on this stage.'

Funny or not, it sure beats the droning Safe Sex Monologues that some rockers who shall remain nameless (Tom Petty) give at concerts before playing.

Is Perfume funny? Most perfume jokes are gross, but I found one that didn't involve flatulence or worse.

Fred decides to get a bottle of perfume for his new girlfriend's birthday. He goes to the fragrance counter and finds a scent he really likes. "I like this one!" he says to the clerk.

The clerk tells him the bottle is $50.00

"That is way too expensive." Fred whines.

The clerk says no problem, it is a popular scent and there is a smaller sized bottle for $30.00.

Fred shakes his head "Still too pricey!"

The clerk rummages through a cabinet and finds a mini bottle of the scent. She shows it to Fred. "Only $15.00"

Fred shakes his head again. "I guess I'd like to see something really cheap!"

The clerk hands him a mirror.

I did some research that might prove that Bob is funny.

"Bob's very funny. If you know him and his songs, he's such a joker."
---George Harrison

Friday, March 9, 2007

Mimosa Pour Moi

The Uninvited (1944) Starring Ray Milland, is one of my favorite "ghost story" movies. It has all the creepiness and suspense needed for a classic spooky tale. The house, on the edge of a cliff overlooking the sea is definitely haunted-- flowers wilt the moment they are brought inside, there is an icy chill in one room, and the scent of mimosa wafts through the house at odd times...

Mimosa Pour Moi by L'Artisan Parfumeur has fizzy, cheerful headnotes that settle down into a lovely mimosa heart. The whole plant-- blossom, stem, and leaf are used, with hints of blackcurrant bud and violet leaf. So far it is the truest Mimosa scent I have tried. It is wonderful when worn during the warm months, but I've been appreciating it during this cold snap, as it smells like a day in late June.

"I was in your presence for an hour or so
Or was it a day? I truly don't know.
Where the sun never set, where the trees hung low
By that soft and shining sea.
In the summertime, ah in the summertime,
In the summertime when you were with me."
--Bob Dylan

"In the Summertime," despite its hazy lyrics, has a lovely feel to it,
and Dylan's harmonica playing hangs in the air like the scent of mimosa.
--Rolling Stone review 1981

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Forever Young

May God bless and keep you always,
May your wishes all come true,
May you always do for others
And let others do for you.
May you build a ladder to the stars
And climb on every rung,
May you stay forever young,
Forever young, forever young,
May you stay forever young.

May you grow up to be righteous,
May you grow up to be true,
May you always know the truth
And see the lights surrounding you.
May you always be courageous,
Stand upright and be strong,
May you stay forever young,
Forever young, forever young,
May you stay forever young.

May your hands always be busy,
May your feet always be swift,
May you have a strong foundation
When the winds of changes shift.
May your heart always be joyful,
May your song always be sung,
May you stay forever young,
Forever young, forever young,
May you stay forever young.
--Bob Dylan

Bob & Vetiver in the studio 1963

Vetiver Cologne for Men By Guerlain 1961
The odor of vetiver oil is described as deep, sweet, woody, smoky, earthy, amber, balsam.
head: Lemon, Bergamot, Coriander
heart: Pepper, Nutmeg
base: Vetiver, Tobacco, Tonka Bean

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

The Picasso of Music

Bob Dylan has been called "The Picasso of Music" and some critics have said that the song 'Black Diamond Bay' illustrates this perfectly. (I haven't quite figured that out, so maybe someone can enlighten me.) Bob began painting and sketching at some point and seems to enjoy it immensely. Of course critics have been terribly unkind, as they have been with his acting, but I can't imagine Bob desiring a show at the Museum of Modern Art or a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame. We try new things, it seems natural to me.

Picasso at age 55, took up poetry. 'I have abandoned sculpture, engraving, and painting to dedicate myself entirely to song.'
- Picasso, April 1936
As early as 1905, Picasso was an avid photographer, but his moody, romantic photographs were not considered important, and his friends advised him to give up that 'hobby' and just concentrate on painting. Boxes of photography equipment and negatives of photographs he took were tossed out on the curb after his death in 1973. Luckily, a ragpicker found these items and sold them to a flea market vendor in a nearby village who knew their worth.

I am always surprised when someone tells me that they have 'no creativity at all' and I feel they haven't really explored all of the paths open to them. (Maybe they judge their efforts too harshly or are impatient with themselves?) Do we let the negative opinions or silence of others stop us? Some people are incapable of complimenting or encouraging others, especially if deep down, they feel their own creativity is limited. It takes courage for a lot of people to get started, to keep moving forward.

The daughter of Pablo, Paloma is the Picasso of jewelry design. Paloma's maternal grandfather was Emile Gilot, a chemist and perfumer in Grasse, France. She learned about scents early, and had always wanted her own fragrance. Her perfume, Paloma Picasso, reflects her own scattered, affluent life. An elegant and sophisticated chypre scent, it reminds me of Mariella Burani perfume in some ways (reviewed here on January 24th) Paloma wanted her perfume to be just like she was, and said it was a "fragrance for a strong woman like myself."

"Up on the white veranda
She wears a necktie and a Panama hat.
Her passport shows a face
From another time and place
She looks nothin' like that.
And all the remnants of her recent past
Are scattered in the wild wind.
She walks across the marble floor
Where a voice from the gambling room is callin' her to come on in.
She smiles, walks the other way
As the last ship sails and the moon fades away
From Black Diamond Bay."
--Bob Dylan

Monday, March 5, 2007

When I Paint My Masterpiece

Martin Scorsese's documentary on Bob Dylan is incredible. It is just one of Scorsese's masterpieces. He is responsible for Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, Goodfellas, Casino, The Age of Innocence, Mean Streets, After Hours, Gangs of New York, Falling In Love, The Color of Money, Raging Bull, Taxi Driver, New York, New York, The Aviator, Kundun, and other films I can't think of right off the top of my head. Scorsese was a Disc Jockey in High School, and his love for music really stands out in the soundtracks.

If you haven't seen "No Direction Home" yet, I urge you do so. You'll be pleasantly surprised by Scorsese's genius in creating a fascinating documentary. As I walked past the Ziegfeld, I saw a group of enthusiastic perfumes waiting for the ticket office to open. It appears that Shalimar, first in line, was posing for a picture for some tourist. J'Adore was partially hidden behind a public telephone, and next in line was Hiris by Hermes (1999) in the dark blue bottle. Hiris is a tribute to the Iris; a blend of the petals, roots, and rhizomes in a warm sensuous bourbon vanilla base. A refreshing, unusual scent. Olivia Giacobetti, who created Hiris, became a perfumer at age 21, and Hiris just might be her masterpiece.

Giacobetti said: "The perfumes that touch me are often an echo of daily life and nature, an inexhaustible source of inspiration...a passing emotion, a detail, an attitude, so many small bits of life that are at the origin of new desires" Giacobetti says she has taken sand from a beach and bark from a tree sniff later, and admits to stealing a bit of incense from a temple so she would not forget how the moment smelled.

"Oh, the streets of Rome are filled with rubble,
Ancient footprints are everywhere.
You can almost think that you're seein' double
On a cold, dark night on the Spanish Stairs.
Got to hurry on back to my hotel room,
Where I've got me a date with Botticelli's niece.
She promised that she'd be right there with me
When I paint my masterpiece."
--Bob Dylan

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Save The Whales

Cuir Beluga: (No whales were harmed in the making of this perfume) The odd name simply refers to the feeling of one note in the blend, and the idea of ambergris, not the real thing. A beautiful white whale was the visual inspiration for this exclusive scent from Guerlain. It deserves a place on the top shelf alongside Shalimar and L'Heure Bleue. Perfumer Olivier Polge has used a light touch with each note, creating a masterpiece.
Notes include: Everlasting Flower, Heliotrope, A 'White Leather' Quinoline, Mandarin Orange Zest, Amber, Musk, and Vanilla.
Since I am not at all fan of "leather" scents, I had my doubts about this one. Apparently luxe leather smells extremely smooth and light, not anywhere as heavy as a leather car interior or motorcycle jacket. This leather is a hint, a feminine whisper. This is a stunning scent.

Just like you I'm wondrin' what I'm doin' here.
Just like you I'm wondrin' what's goin' on.
--Bob Dylan