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Type the words Serge Lutens Muscs Koublai Khan into Google and you'll wind up with a deluge of hyperbole: "shocking and erotic", "raw, dirty and sensual", "musk, salt, armpit and leather, in that order", and my favorite piece of ridiculousness: "the aftermath of bodies intertwined in coitus".
People, please -- can we have some perspective when it comes to talking about a frickin' perfume? One of the reviewers said she let her fourteen year old daughter smell Muscs Koublai Khan and the girl said that it smelled kind of pretty, like incense, which is a far more perceptive and honest statement than all the noise about skank, sweat and armpits her mother was raving on about.
I've been in a lot of locker rooms, played baseball, football, soccer and basketball with a lot of sweaty guys, and I can tell you with absolute certainty that there's nothing about Muscs Koublai Khan that smells remotely like a rank armpit or a sweat soaked guy, and I have this suspicion that some women (and some gay men) who review this perfume engage willingly in a kind of mass Harlequin Romance delusion about how men smell when they sweat.
Really, we don't smell anything like Muscs Koublai Khan when we sweat. If we did, we wouldn't need Muscs Koublai Khan, and need it we do if we desire to smell at all dashing or charming when standing at a doorway, a bunch of flowers clutched in one hand and a finger pressing the doorbell.
Muscs Koublai Khan is, instead, exactly how the level-headed fourteen year old girl described it -- a little sweet, a little smoky incense and kind of pretty (albeit underscored with a warm, rich synthetic musk for lots of depth). The rest of the twisted-knickers crowd twittering their skanky fantasies over Musc Koublai Khan reminds me of the same sort of reactions that get twittered over Caron's Yatagan -- since it doesn't smell like a powder-puff, the more, erm, delicate souls among us succumb to the vapors and immediately start hallucinating fecal matter and men's sweaty armpits.
Believe me, how they jump from a bottle of rather nice, lightly floral and smoothly musky cologne to writhing coitus, sweaty balls and "every secretion ever extracted from a mammalian backside all rolled into one" reveals far more about them than it does about Muscs Koublai Khan.
25 June, 2008