Sunday, October 14, 2007

A Day in the Life of My Nose

Tonight I thought I'd attempt to describe what life with my nose is like. This is going to be difficult for me because I have a bad case of morning sickness that is causing me to be nauseous at this very moment, and merely typing the tale I am about to type could cause me to "use the facilities" to put it delicately. The rest of you, however, should be fine.

To preface my tale, I'd just like to say that I generally have a very sensitive nose, but when I am pregnant (which I am right now), my nose acts as if it is on steroids. On with the story (and although it may seem as if it is imbellished, it is not).

My husband and I decided to go to Carrabbas last night for our date. I put on a new silk blouse that I have been wanting to wear and immediately I smelled very strongly the unmistakable smell of pure silk. At least it is unmistakable to me, because I smell it everytime I am around silk, but it is much stronger when I am pregnant. I bet most of you didn't even know silk has a smell, well it does, it's sort of a subtle musty smell. So from that point on, I smelled silk everytime I inhaled. We get to Carrabbas, and make the colossal mistake of accepting a table near the door. We sit down, and Immediately I smell wood varnish as if a fresh can had been opened underneath my nose. It was so strong that I had to turn away and exclaim "Do you smell that?!" Which is a thing I say quite often. Jon looks at me quizzically as I wonder aloud if the wood trim next to us had just been painted. Jon sticks his nose against the wood and sniffs and then he claims he can't smell anything. So I decide to do my best to ignore it even though the idea of eating next to an open can of varnish would put most people off. Pretty soon people come and stand near our table waiting for a table of their own and I begin to smell skin. Yes, you read that right, skin. This time I don't even bother to ask Jon as I am pretty sure I am the only one who can smell the more subtle smell of other people's skin (I mean if he can't even smell an opened can of varnish...right?). Now, while it is true that skin isn't as strong a smell as others, it is incredibly disgusting and way too intimate a thing to be smelling if you aren't in love with the person, so I decide to turn my nose toward the varnish. Pretty soon, our food comes (which Ironically doesn't smell nearly as strongly as the other smells I'm smelling--think about that next time you smell good food), and we begin to eat. No sooner than I had taken my first few bites--my nose went from zero to cigarrette-up-my-nose in nothing flat. I just about loose it as I recoil in disgust and exclaim "Someone is smoking in here!"

---Now, let me pause a minute to say that I'm sure that my reactions seem melodramatic to some of you reading this, but I assure you that I am smelling these smells very very very strongly and if you smelled them as strongly as I did, you would have a similar reaction, anyone would. So you can see that they are really quite appropriate, even if they are a bit embarrassing for the atmosphere. Back to the night:

This smoke smell was so strong it smelled as if someone were sitting on my lap puffing excess smoke from their cigarrette into my nostrils. I kid you not. I had to cover my nose with my napkin and force myself to breathe through my mouth. Jon was so startled by my reaction, he went to see who was smoking. Sure enough someone was smoking--OUTSIDE by our unopened window. Thankfully puffer Joe decided to put out his cancer stick and I was able to resume my meal. That is until a large group of people came in standing by us waiting for their tables and I began to smell Perfume (as though it had been squirted right up my nose), more skin, and old people. This combination was too strong for me and I almost puked all over the floor, so I decided to cut my losses and wait in the car. By this time, we were finished and just waiting for the check so Jon handed me the keys and I bolted for the door. As I left, I was smacked by another vat of perfume from a lady just entering the building, and I continued to smell her all the way to my car. Later I decided that I probably could have tracked down which car she came out of just like a bloodhound (hmmmm... maybe I could use this talent for good?). I escape to my car, sit down and began to breathe deeply: *silk* exhale, *silk* exhale, *silk* exhale.

Couple all of that with a recurring feeling of nausea and now you know why I'm having a bit of a hard time these days.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Awareness

ok, if you know me at all, you knew this was coming--or at least you should have guessed that I would have an opinion about:

BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH

It's here everyone! Put on your pink ribbons and break out your pocket books because every cashier and company is going to shamelessly ask you for money.

Let's break this down. First of all, is the goal to make everyone aware of Breast Cancer? Because I think we've hit the mark. If there is another purpose, maybe we need to change the name.

Personally, I think that it's just an excuse for companies to exploit a disease in order to make more money. Think about it, how much money is really going to curing breast cancer from the pink M&M's you're buying? And let's counter balance that with the amount of money Mars Inc. is spending on advertising their pink M&M's, and changing their packaging, and dying their M&M's pink. Now, let's think about how much money Mars is making from selling more M&M's to people who think they are making a difference. It's so underhanded too because they make you think that they are making a difference in the health of humanity, when in reality, they are contaminating it! Sure, you might be donating .0001% of your sales to Breast Cancer research, but you're manufacturing CANDY!!! So really, at the same time you're fighting Breast Cancer, you are contributing to Heart Disease and obesity. I'll tell you what, forget about Breast Cancer, and start using real ingredients in your products and we'll call it even. It's probably all those artificial chemicals in our food that is causing cancer anyway, so you might say that they are making the problem worse! It's like those commercials by Philip Morris about quiting smoking when they are the biggest manufacturers of cigarrettes. I mean are you kidding us? Have you all completely lost your souls?

But I digress...

As if that weren't bad enough--now we are being solicited at the cashier before we swipe our cards: "Do you want to donate a dollar to Breast Cancer research?" And if you say "No," you might as well be saying: "I couldn't care less about people who are suffering from Breast Cancer." Of course that isn't true, but it's how they make you feel. One of these days I'd like to say: "You know what, I would love to make an annual donation to breast cancer research if I knew how much was actually going to research and how much was going to pay for the little pink papers that you write people's names on. Is there a report that you can show me?" Seriously, where does that money go? I'd like to know where the money goes, and what they are doing with it before I donate.

The problem with all of this is that if you don't support these companies it looks as if you are being uncaring, when the fact of the matter is the makers of these products are the ones exploiting you and the victims of Breast Cancer. Which I think is the worst form of comercialism. People complain all the time about how Christmas has become too commercial, but I think the commercialism of disease is worse.

As a side note, I'm just so sick and tired of each month having a certain thing that it celebrates or commemorates, aren't you? from all of the ethnic minorities that have to have their heritage months to Earth day (which is technically a day but we have extended it to a month, and didn't it feel more like 90 days this last year?) to disease "awareness" months. Honestly it's enough to make me want to puke. And while we are at it, why do they have to have their own ribbons too? Let's take all of the money that we are spending on ribbons and feed starving children shall we? That's one of the problems with capitalism, all the money is going to the wrong places.

Ok, I'm done, I'm sure you could see that I could go on and on...

I will say one more thing though, I do love that I can get pink versions of some of my favorite candies this month. Every cloud has a silver lining!