When I was younger, at school, I had an art teacher who, after lunch, used to doze in the kiln and when I was younger I went to the outer hebridies. In the Outer Hebridies, I saw children wander on the road, as if they were concussed. The first time, I slowed down and a young girl walked to the front of my car and banged the bonnet of my car with her fists. I wound down the window to ask what was wrong, and then I guessed. Carefully, I drove on and did not stop when I saw other children.
I used to work with a woman who, after lunch, would sit in the smoking room, smoking with men she had met that lunchtime. Drinking cans with them.
Sometimes, I get on the bus and I smell it again.
One of these people is not like the others I think.
You can see them viusally; they look the same, and move roughly the same, but they are a bad photocopy, a jerky rip. Little exaggerated movements, excessive caution and then over done innocence. One of these people has more than jobs and shopping and families, or less, I suppose, dependent on how you view the situation.
You can spot them by seeing through the fake respectability. But there’s another way to find them, too. Scent.
By late evening, all of these people would be sweating it out.
This, Zoflora Hyacint, to me, does not smell like hyacinth.
This to me smells like a spilled secret, an involuntary confession.
Those photoshopped fields are false. Potekemin scents. A secret on a lie.
Zoflora Hyacinth, to me, smells like sweated stale alcohol and my son has just gone to school with his uniform reeking of it. (I always use a Zoflora as a prewash, the scent dependent on the mood and the night before) Perhaps his art teacher will smell it, and give him a look, a nod to a secret club. I rather hope not.