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This is going to be a tough column for me to write because it’s extremely difficult to put into words exactly what I’m dealing with here. My current apartment has a smell to it that is neither good nor bad. It is not offensive, but it isn’t welcoming either. It’s something born out of, well, I don’t know where.
To start, I have an extremely sensitive nose. I pick up scents like a basset hound and even the most miniscule of odors will pop up on my radar. I don’t mean for that to sound like a brag because, if anything, it’s a burden.
I’d kill to have a nose that only smells the most pungent stuff in its immediate vicinity, but I can’t desensitize myself so here is the situation – I live in an apartment with wood floors. I’ve got a large rug in my living room that I vacuum two to three times per week, along with the rest of the apartment, so automatically that is out as the culprit of the smell.
I moved in two months ago to a completely clean place. In fact, it was deep cleaned and repainted. The refrigerator was spotless, every nook and cranny mopped, swept, and dusted. But this was when it was warm outside, and I was rocking with the windows open for a lot of the time. On days that I did decide to throw on the A/C, nothing smelled out of the ordinary.
I know that all homes have a smell. I can remember as a little kid going over to various friends homes – all of them had a different smell. Some reeked of kitty litter, some were almost too sterile, and some smelled like, well, nothing.
I’ve always contended that I had one of those homes as a youth. My house did not smell like anything really other than whatever it is that my mother or father was cooking in the kitchen, and even that would dissipate after a few hours. And I know that techinally, yes, it probably did have some sort of aroma to it, I lived there obviously so I just found that to be an aroma that smelled like nothing.
What I’m aiming for with my new apartment is precisely that — I want it to smell like nothing. Or maybe it does smell like nothing to others and I’m just being fucking paranoid.
I don’t want some overly pungent candle that stinks up the room even when it isn’t lit. I don’t want a Febreze plug-in making my apartment smell like the bathroom at my office and I certainly don’t want it smelling like it does currently. This current smell is dominating all of my thoughts.
We all have our own scent that we carry around with us. I know this because, well, I’ve lived a life. Everyone’s clothes have a scent. It doesn’t matter what kind of laundry detergent or dryer sheet you use, those clothes eventually go back to smelling like you after they are taken out of the drier. As the great Bagger Vance once (sort of) said – “Inside each and every one of us is our one, true authentic smell. Something we was born with. Something that’s ours and ours alone. Something that can’t be learned… something that’s got to be remembered.”
Your furniture, your linens, your towels, etcetera and so on. It’s all got your true, authentic scent on it. This is why you hear girls talking about their boyfriend’s sweatshirts all of the time. They like them because they’re oversized and cozy, yes, but they also wear them because they smell like their boyfriend.
I’ve had my air filters for the HVAC system in my apartment changed twice. I’ve done the classic “open all of the windows for a day while I’m at work” move to no avail. I’ve cleaned the joint up and down, and still, I walk into my place every day after day work or coming back home from the gym and I’m just not satisfied with the scent. I apologize for the vagueness, but I want it to smell like nothing, and right now it smells like something. I just have no idea what it is. Can anyone relate or have I gone completely off of the reservation here?.