I don’t have any new cold open material! It’s been A DAY, YOU GUYS, and my life is not that eventful! I went to work and wished I had the day off like my wife did, and that I could join her watching The Nanny in our living room! The most exciting thing that happened was the chocolate-chip pumpkin muffin I had for breakfast!
Do You Have A Memory That’s Linked To A Smell?
(Obligatory reminder to subscribe to my once-monthly newsletter here, which rounds up everything I wrote in the preceding month, grants access to a curated members-only Spotify playlist, and includes a piece of exclusive bonus collectible content I will NEVER repost anywhere else, ever!)
PICTURE IT: February 2014. Kevin Bacon and James Purefoy are terrifying America in The Following, Belgium legalized euthanasia for terminal patients of any age, and all across the nation, people are unironically saying ‘on fleek’. When someone said ‘crypto’, you thought of the Mothman or the Loch Ness Monster (or, if you were a truly hep cat, the Superdog), all of our mothers were convinced that the Ice Bucket Challenge was somehow a Satanic baptism and, believe it or not, we were only kinda sick of Let It Go yet.
And ALSO we moved to Mesa! For many reasons! None of which involved a posse!
Now, many cities have signature local flora; my native Antelope Valley had our famous poppies and also world-class tumbleweeds, Hokkaido has its cherry blossoms, and Mesa is a citrus town: kumquats, lemons, oranges, grapefruits, tangerines, other things that range from yellow to orange, and all of them smell AMAZING. And they’re why my very first memory of this town, where soon I will have lived longer than I did in my childhood home, is of the orange blossoms in our dark neighborhood welcoming us as we arrived in the new place we would call our own together.
They bloom every Februay–and sometimes again in early summer, due to increasingly erratic weather patterns–and I look forward to them and taking walks just to stretch the ol’ sniffer on the gold and green and purple that suffuse the air more than any other annual tradition. Yes: even more than the Purge. If you’ve never smelled them they’re absolutely indescribable, but a whiff of blooming jasmine isn’t too far off, and in any event I recommend you remedy that without delay. They’re my favorite smell in the world (Category: Non Wife-Hair), and always blanket my heart in a silent snowfall of nostalgia, safe and tired, sad and excited, standing beside the woman I would one day be privileged and honored to be called ‘husband’ by, looking forward hand-in-hand, ready to fight for life, for love, and for the blossoms.