Monday, September 22, 2008

Doppin Science!

Before I talk about recent stuffs, I thought I'd drop a li'l science, since smell seems to be all in the science these days.

First, a thinglet I got form Very Short List, which has proven to be really cool. They talked about a book called If There Ever Was: A Book of Extinct and Impossible Smells. It's "a scratch and sniff book of 14 extinct and impossible smells including the smell of the sun, communism, and extinct flowers. The book accompanies the exhibition of the same name curated by Reg Vardy Gallery (April – June 2008) and involved a collaboration with 11 fragrance designers and organisations such as NASA and International Flavors and Fragrances." Sounds awesome. I wonder how long the scratch-n-sniff thingies last, though. At 12 pounds, I suppose it's worth trying out. But what's the smell of communism????

So that's first. Secondly, a science story that I didn't get around to looking at until forever after it was published. The findings? Apparently, wearing too much perfume could be a sign of depression, resulting from anosmia. From the article: “Our scientific findings suggest that women who are depressed are also losing their sense of smell, and may overcompensate by using more perfume,” explains researcher Prof. Yehuda Shoenfeld, a member of the Sackler Faculty of Medicine at Tel Aviv University. “We also believe that depression has biological roots and may be an immune system response to certain physiological cues.”

Interesting. I always suspected that wearing too much perfume may correlate with unhappiness, but I never suspected that it would with depression, especially depression resulting from anosmia. So why did I think that? From my own unscientific observation: In so many places I've worked, I noticed that the ladies in housekeeping would walk around wearing lush evening perfumes, and I figured that they did to ameliorate the suckiness of their jobs. Because I would wear a lot of cologne or perfume at my jobs (which I hated) too, because it gave you at least a little bit of pleasure. So I assumed there might be a connection. Who knew?!

And that's the scent beep for the moment.

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