Monday, December 15, 2008

smell ya later!

I was talking to a friend of mine the other day and somehow we got to talking about how important the sense of smell truly is. For me, it's the strongest of our senses, which is why I try to use it in my writing.

The sense of smell is like a Trapper Keeper for your memories. That's the best way I can think to describe it. I think that's how you develop your 'favorite' smells--based on the memories they created when your Trapper Keeper filed them away.

Smells are also a little bit like a time machine. The smell of vanilla takes me directly to my grandmother's kitchen. It comforts me and makes me feel warm and safe. Wet grass transports me to stargazing on a hillside. The smell of crisp new money takes me back to a Christmas where I received a stocking full of the brand new bills. Honeysuckle and Gardenias are summer. The smell of cinnamon takes me to directly to a softball game because I always had an Atomic Fireball in my mouth.

What about you? What smells are in your Trapper Keeper? Where do they transport you?


  1. I always wondered why they don't have a "roast turkey" scented candle. That smell makes me feel so cozy.

  2. It's awesome, how our sense of smell holds so many memories!!!

    I have a lot of scents that transport me. Getting a whiff of the manpanion's cologne reminds me of him a lot.

    I love gwen's idea of a roast turkey candle. ROFL!!

  3. Gwen, I don't think I can handle a candle that smells like roast turkey. I'm sorry. But that's just wrong!

    I would love a candle that smells like leather or a warm spring rain...

  4. Fragrance has the most powerful connection to memory recall. They did a study when I was in college and I ended up reading a lot about it out of curiosity.

    It's so funny how certain triggers stay with us forver. If I smell certain perfumes I am immediately reminded of my aunt, my grandmother.

    Lilacs were blooming insanely the day my great-aunt died. I smell lilacs and I'm with her.

  5. One of my favorites is lavender. When I was 19, I went to France for the first time. It was summer and we were in Provence where field after field of lavender was in bloom. I'd just started dating the boy who became the man I later married. Everything was about romance and possibilities and feeling very feminine. So lavender instantly takes me back there!

  6. The smell of gasoline always reminds me of my uncle and my grandpa. My grandpa always worked in his workshop on the farm and it smelled like oil and gasoline. Occasionally other smells will seem familiar, but I can't place them.

  7. i like the way food smells.

  8. that was deep, Fishdog.

  9. seriously, when I was planning this blog, I asked him what his favorite smell was the other night. His response: Grilled Meat.

    I mean, really. I'm married to a caveman.