Smells those trees, smell those Douglas Firs. ~ Special Agent Dale Cooper
So since this came up recently an awesome Twitter exchange with Meredith and Victoria, I thought I’d post about it. For a couple of months, I’ve been thinking about how if I were a perfumer, all my scents would revolve around some weird pop culture reference because that’s how my mind works. I don’t have any plans to become a perfumer, but I like to think about what I’d make and what it would smell like. I even considered buying accords and trying to mix my own, knowing that I’ll never quite get to the high end chemistry part of perfumery.
Twin Peaks. If you knew me in real life, you would know I am obsessed with Twin Peaks. I have been since it aired when I was twelve. I watched the original series, bought Laura’s diary (totally inappropriate for the average twelve year old, btw), and still own Agent Cooper’s cassette tapes to Diane, though I have nothing to play them on anymore. My twenty-seventh birthday was a Twin Peaks-themed Party, and I dressed as dead Laura Palmer, complete with stiff plastic wrapped like a tall collar. I am so familiar with Angelo Badalamenti’s work that when I heard Neko Case’s “Look for Me (I’ll Be Around)” I thought, “That reminds me of Badalamenti’s work with Julee Cruise.” Then I discovered that was her inspiration. Only a “meh” fan of the Dresden Dolls, I completely fell in love with Amanda Palmer when she made Who Killed Amanda Palmer? because the album can be dark and mysterious like my beloved TP.
You get the idea. There are fan and there are fanatics. I’m the latter.
Part of why I love Twin Peaks is because the show embodies the five senses like so little else does. There is ongoing dialogue and mysterious clues that revolve around things you can only smell or hear or feel, which is super cool considering the media involved in the actual storytelling is visual only. From the way the presence of evil smells like burnt engine oil to the opening few scenes that describe phone static by way of saying “it has that open air sound, y'know? Where, it sounds like wind blowing, like wind blowing through trees…” to the universal obsession with a damn, fine cup of coffee, the show begs you to see, smell, hear, and even feel your way through the series.
So, in the vein of all things Peaks-related, here are my fantasy perfumes, and what I imagine they smell like:
The Double R Diner - “This must be where pies go when they die.” Notes: cherry pie and strong black coffee, a coffee “black as midnight on a moonless night.”
The Packard Sawmill - “Insurance investigator should read ‘arson’ block letters, about six feet high.” Notes: saw dust, scotch pine, burnt wood.
The Great Northern - “In a large building with many rooms alike. But occupied by different souls night after
night.” Plus, someone is trapped there. (Notes are vaguely spoilery.) Notes: Douglas fir, wet stone, cherry blossom, green tea.
Donna Hayward - Twin Peaks true good girl, voted “Most Likely to Succeed” in her Senior Class. Even when she tries to be bad, she's still so very good. “When did you start smoking? “I smoke every once in a while; it helps relieve tension.” “When did you get so tense?” “When I started smoking.” Notes: Ginger ale and a butter cookie, but with a faint hint of cigarette smoke.
My Name is Audrey Horne and I Get What I Want - And what Audrey wants is her own perfume. Notes: Lipstick wax; the leather of brand new saddle shoes; ice cream cone (“Cup or cone?” “Cone. I like to lick.”); grapefruit (“As long as those grapefruits are...freshly squeezed."), and maybe a hint of cherry stem.
As Agent Cooper sexily notes, “Audrey, that perfume is intoxicating."
Fire, Walk With Me - All things Bob, and probably too terrifying to wear. Notes: grinding train rail, the coopery smell of blood, bonfire, burnt rubber, engine oil.
Special Agent Dale Cooper - “Dear Diane…” The ultimate intuitive detective, who dreams of mysterious secrets, shoots like a pro, and only drinks black coffee and Black Yukon Sucker Punches. And who makes a tucked in plaid shirt sexy in a way no one else can. Notes: gun smoke, shiny badge metal, crisp clean sheets, coffee, and whiskey.
She’s Filled with Secrets - A tribute to the one and only Laura Palmer. Notes: Ink, diary pages (“We found her diary.” “No, there’s a second one.”), forest floor (“a necklace buried in the woods”), river water, and a hint of plastic (“She’s dead. Wrapped in plastic!”).
As for living Laura, she would probably smell like a big and sexy expensive department store scent from working at the perfume counter at Horne’s Department Store. (“He named it after himself.”)
Remember, “it’s the sweetest smelling job she’s ever had.”
Are you a TP fan? If so, let's hear your ideas of some "little man from another place" (that's LMFAP to you fans out there) perfume ideas! Or ideas about Lil, my brother's sister's gal! Or Harold, the iris growing recluse!
"The stars still shine bright.
The mountains still right.
Yet something is different are we falling in love?
Are we falling in love?"
~ "Falling," Julee Cruise