My god, it's Topper Schroeder! You read here???
We haven't spoken in years! I haven't been active on this board in years, either. I just signed into this forum a couple days ago and there you are! So amazing. You're the person who got me into all this in the first place so many years ago, Topper.
BN people, in case you don't know Topper, he's the originator of Gendarme! The genius himself and an indie from way back in ... exactly what year was it, Topper? 1990 or earlier still?
I still believe your Gendarme is one of the most wearable and truly unique fragrances out there. It was certainly a first in its class with only wannabes trailing after it. I've smelled your later winners, too, but your original formula will always remain my favorite..
However, I just refuse believe the secret to its soapiness lies merely in its bergamot oil. It seems to me, if I mix up bergamot with alcohol it simply doesn't do this same Gendarme "soapy" thing. LOL.. oh, you sly dog, you'll never tell and that's why I never tried asking you!
But wow, on the other hand, this makes me remember something odd that I'd truly forgotten. When I was a kid my mom would occasionally make lye soap at home in a big kettle the way she'd learned to make it from her Czech mother using lye and beef tallow she'd saved up. She kept a little bottle of "oil of bergamot" in the cupboard. The only thing she ever used this powerful-smelling stuff for was to scent that hard, white soap, even though she she suspected that it irritated her skin (clearly the stuff she had wasn't bergapten free). So my childhood association with "bergamot" was definitely this soap.. only later did I make the connection with Earl Grey tea.
Ok, I'll have to revisit the idea that perhaps this certain bergamot association runs much deeper than I'd assumed.
I do clearly get the association between ginger oil and soap, however.. via Ivory Soap.
Thanks so much for chiming in, Topper. I hope you're doing well these days. Wonder if you're still on Nemo? When I first met you, it was above the bank on the corner of Sta. Monica Blvd and San Vincente. OMG, those were the days of my wild youth! You encouraged me to go ahead and make fragrances.. Don't know whether to love or dispise you for that;-)
~Mike Storer, a former longtime resident of West Hollywood now living in remote Arizona.
Edited by mastorer - 6/18/13 at 10:35am