Tuesday, January 17, 2012

I've been had and I've been held with the ghosts at bay...

Dear reader,

Some weird, wild stuff has been happening here on Planet Diana lately. Sorry I've been so delinquent in updating you about it, but I'm rounding out week eight of being sick, and about to head back to the doctor for yet another round of tests and pills. I'm starting to feel like subject zero for a weird super bug, so I hope you'll forgive me for being so absentee. Also, if I become a zombie, please kill me before I can infect others. You have my permission.

Weird, Wild Thing Numero Uno

Should I buy perfume? Books?
More bookshelves for both?
A benefactor of mysterious motives has gifted some money to me. Free and clear, no strings attached dinero. This money is not enough to say, pay off my student loans or change my life or anything, but it's enough that I am no longer sweating a potential cross-country move and thinking about saving up to buy a house in the next few years instead of a decade from now. It also creates a weird opportunity most perfumistas fantasize about that never really comes true: the opportunity to buy some truly and ridiculously expensive perfume if I want, or an EPIC amount of decants, samples, smaller bottles, whathaveyou. FN1.

The mind virtually boggles at the opportunity. I mean, who among us hasn't played, "What would I buy if I could by anything?" But this is real now. (Well, it will be when the check shows up later this week.) So what do I do, my dearies? Do I buy all the things on my "to be purchased" list? Do I buy a passel of samples to try lots of stuff I've never tried? Do I hit The Perfume Court with an epic order of decants? Do I set up a twelve month perfume budget?

I'm overwhelmed, honestly. The idea makes my consumer impulse sensors go Blue Screen of Death due to major system fault error. I'm sure I will ultimately do some multi-month combo of bottles/samples/decants in combination with sales and discounts and such (again, not a fool), but I wanted to ask you all: what would you do if you were me? What are you surprised I've never reviewed? What would you absolutely recommend trying? Hit me with your best shot.

One thing is for damned sure. I am finally going to feel brave enough to walk into The Perfume House which I have never done for fear that I would completely lose my mind and buy everything I saw, financially crippling me for decades to come.

Weird, Wild Thing Numero Dos

This is how I've felt for two months...
I have been sick forever. Okay, maybe not forever, but it feels like forever. Eight full weeks is a ridiculous amount of time to be sick. At this point, I'm on the verge of giving up on Western meds. Anyone have any homeopathic/naturopathic recommendations for viral head cold followed by bacterial bronchitis followed by return of viral head cold with remnants of bronchitis threatening to become pneumonia? Seriously. Home remedies from your great aunt the voodoo queen are welcome and will be seriously considered. I'm desperate.

This, by the way, is why I've been so scarce with new reviews. I haven't been able to properly smell for any consistent period of time for almost two months. I think of it as a special kind of torture. I have been trying things intermittently, though, so expect some reviews next week based on the handful of days I have been able to smell things.

Weird, Wild Thing Numero Tres

Foggy mornings --
 so inspiring!
I am currently waiting for my panel of eight readers to return their comments and edits on my book. Following one more round of edits based on their feedback which I hope to finish by end of February at the latest, it will be time to go a searching for an agent. I'm not really sure how I feel about setting myself for an intense year of rejection. It makes me feel like I should probably surround myself with a lot of nice perfume. (*Cough* Excuses! *Cough*)

Despite having written this blog for four years now, I never knew how much I would enjoy creating my own characters and worlds. I've done a lot of short fiction, but novel writing is so much better. Even if only my friends ever read my work, the joy I get out of the act of doing it is well worth the effort. People talk about feeling called to do things all the time, and I didn't really get it. I thought it meant doing something that came naturally to you, something you were good at. I didn't realize it was the act of engaging in work that inspires you, makes you happy, rewards you with a kind of inner light. Long form story telling is that thing for me. I am so grateful I didn't go my whole life without finding it.

FN1. I'm no idiot; I'm adding 99% of it to my current meager savings in pursuit of homeownership. But even David thinks I should buy some perfume. He actually suggested it. Because El Hubs is awesomesauce.


Ines said...

I am very sorry to hear you've been so sick (and for so long!).
I do hope you get better soon - I have no remedies to offer, I only try to bolster my immune system when sickness hits and what works for me is taheebo. It certainly can't hurt.

Lucky you to get some money! Can't wait to hear what you'll buy - I think if something like that happens to me, I'm getting myself an Amouage bottle. :) (and I wish someone would gift me with money)

jen said...

Diana, that's terrible that you're so sick. I have had walking-pneumonia since before Thanksgiving, so I understand. Actually, I was just starting to feel better (FINALLY!) but now the entire family has yet another damned headcold. Sigh...

Congrats on your windfall. I've usually bought decants and samples, but have declared 2012 my Year of the Bottle. I'm only going to be able to get a few, but want to get those must-haves instead of chasing more samples. So, I'd buy bottles. Ubar; Bois des Iles; Cormoandel; Beige; 24, Faubourg for starters. There are plenty more. ;)

Enjoy and feel well soon.

samberg said...

Congrats on the windfall! I just visited the Perfume House and walked away with a bottle of Apres L'Ondee, so I know the temptation. Indulge, you deserve it.

Elisa said...

Not to freak you out, but when I first developed a digestive disorder that has never been diagnosed as celiac disease, but is something like it, I had three tenacious colds in the span of about three months. Basically felt like I'd get over the cold and then get sick again a week later. (Not at all normal for me -- now I can't remember the last time I had a cold, even though I've been around plenty of sick people.) I know now my immune system was just tanking as a result of stress. Could your book and an upcoming move and other life factors possibly be totally stressing you out? Stress and lost sleep are very bad for the immune system, which could explain why you're not getting better.

Some ways to nurture your immune system: more sleep, and more restful sleep, and eat fermented foods (yogurt, kimchi, kombucha, etc.). It will also be key to remove or reduce the sources of stress. (For me, I also had to change my diet for the long term.)

Best of luck and have fun spending that money!!! I'd get myself to a By Kilian counter, stat...

Thalia said...

I'm sorry you've been so sick! Have you tried a neti pot/sinus irrigation dealie? Those are supposed to clear out the gunk and help you get better.

If I had a financial windfall I would hit Parfums de Nicolai, and hit them hard.

mals86 said...

Hope you can get the muck cleared out of your system, whatever it is... and good luck on getting that house, it's a huge step.

Please update us on the novel progress.

Joan said...

I love your posts, Diana, even if I don't comment much.

I'm glad the money thing happened! I'd save most of the money and buy a few decants if it were me, but you are not asking for advice here! :)

And good luck with the book. I'm a grad student and I don't have much time, but if you ever want to exchange short stories, let me know.

Diana said...

Ines-- Thanks for the well wishes. If only I could actually *get* well.


Diana said...


Thanks for the suggestions! This whole perpetual chest infection is the worst. I hope you and your fam are feeling better!


Diana said...


I have not made it to Perfume House yet, but when I do, I'll be sure to tell all about it. Glad to hear you made a lovely acquisition.


Diana said...


Celiac's runs in my husband's family, so I'm very familiar. It's probably more day job stress than anything, but it's definitely a contributing factor. I'll definitely try the fermented foods; I'm working on the sleep part.

Also, By Kilian -- I know, right? And yet, I still keep thinking, "Don't be a fool! Get decants of 2 or 3 of them!"

I'll let you know what I decide on.


Diana said...


I haven't tried the netti pot, but the problem is more in my chest than in sinuses at this point. I'll keep it in mind should I get re-congested.


Diana said...


Thanks for the well-wishes. The house is probably still a ways away, it's a good start. And that's something.


Diana said...


Your advice is probably the closest to where I will land, actually. Saving is more where I'm at mentally.

Thanks for the well wishes.