Summer splashing.

“My Gahd, it smells like a funeral again!” Joey
hunted ’round the room for the culprit, and spotted me trying to hide my J&J
Baby Cologne in Bounce. She pounced on it and sniffed the cap. “It’s you! Stop
wearing this!” “But, but, it’s just baby cologne, and it’s mostly citrusy…” My
voice trailed off as she sprang over to Mike and made him sniff. “See? See?
Doesn’t it smell like a funeral?” Mike nodded.

Is it my body chemistry that renders a
simple grapefruit-and-jasmine-and-alcohol concoction into distilled Eau de

Ah well. At the height of
Manila heat, baby colognes are about all I can stand. They’re cheap and they
don’t hang around for too long. (Which suddenly made me think of prostitutes
grown too old in the profession.) In general, if you don’t have officemates like
Joey and Mike, they are also non-offensive.

Amongst the Spanish colognes, Denenes,
Gotas de Oro, S3 and Nenuco are the easiest to find in department stores. They
come in towering bottles; decanting is a must. From the local offerings, Bench
has a very wide range, and I have always liked Bubblegum for its unapologetic,
brainless sweetness; Ice Mint, which has a fresh, green note and would induce
many a cheek pinch for young boys, and Popsicle, because you smell like you
should be hanging from the clothesline, waving in the breeze. J&J is almost
every woman’s go-to, and the new line, which includes the allegedly-funereal
Bounce! and the spiked floral Slide!, is a break from regulars Morning Dew,
Fresh Blossoms and Heaven. From left field of the playground, Watson’s Body
Treats line has a baby cologne called Bubble Gum, which I bought because the
illustration of the baby on the pack looked like Lucien. It’s a dead ringer for
the smell that rises from Bazooka bubblegum when you unwrap it.

Now I must go and smell my baby, who
smells like sweat and milk and baby. Yum.