The Basic Traveler: Bring Your Own Air Freshener


It’s time for another migration from my old account, The Basic Traveler.  The morning commute started out pretty good, compared to most days.  I accidentally stayed in a bed a couple snoozes of the alarm longer than I had anticipated, but seeing how it was the Monday after a holiday weekend I think I did better than most people.  I say this as I am the only person I have seen in a building that employees thousands for about an hour now.  The roads were fairly clear.  No douchebags swerving in and out of traffic (why can’t these assholes be the ones who spill flaming hot lava-esque coffee on themselves in the car?  Karma, where the f&%$ are you?!)  And since no one is here this morning, no one has noticed I didn’t gel my hair today.  Oopsy.  All in all, I had high hopes for the remainder of my commute!  That is until after I was 100% sure Kailash Singh sat down beside me.  For those of you lucky enough to not have to even know who that is, count your blessings.  He is the world’s smelliest man after refusing to wash for 37 years. He lives with his wife (bless HER HEART!) and seven daughters (that’s a whole lotta…. smells happening in that house…) and has gone decades without taking a bath, shower or using a bar of soap.  Translation:  imagine the smell of LiLo’s vajayjay after an all-night sex party at the Playboy mansion combined with stale, moldy pig blood and moth balls.  And that still may not even do it justice.  I thought it important to share one of my previous posts on the same subject.  Grab a clothes pin and light a scented candle before you read…


Original Title:  The New Year’s Resolution Nobody Made

The holidays are long gone.  Our refrigerators are empty.  No one at work is even talking about 2015 anymore; all meetings and conversations are around a “more robust and efficient” 2016 strategy.  Do they just recycle the talking points from year to year?  The biggest mention of 2015 is currently around New Year’s Resolutions.  Like you, many of my co-workers have resolutions to lose weight, regain a personal financial advantage, and to stay calm/not sweat the small stuff/not let stress build up/etc.  As I board the morning train each day with my upper-middle class-to-upper-class neighbors, I know one resolution that no one gave a damn to make:  SMELL BETTER.


As last year ended and I took note of over 40+ different putrid smells, I thought to myself, “Self, next year will be better.  People will realize they smell bad.  They will receive their baskets of fragrances, soaps, lotions, etc and they will put them to good use.”  Wrong.  They are obviously saving them to be re-gifted or they returned them to the local Wal-Mart without a receipt so they could buy onions, garlic, and edible shit.  2015: Year of the Sheep?  Sorry, my Chinese friends.  Where I live, it is more like Year of the Rotting Corpse.  I am actually surprised when I look to the man to my left wearing a Burberry scarf, Calvin Klein pea coat, and Prada glasses and I don’t see maggots bursting through his orifices because based on the smell, I literally thought I was sitting next to a man who had been murdered.  3 weeks ago.  While chopping garlic to ward off the vampires.


What is a typical breakfast?  Eggs and bacon?  Biscuits and gravy?  Fruit?  Smoothie?  Oatmeal?  All of the aforementioned choices are acceptable and embraced.  But what do I find that most people MUST be eating?  Onion bagels with onion cream cheese spread is the first thing that comes to mind.  Is that even a thing?  Or are they actually just diving into raw onions the way slutty Snow White bit in to that apple from the GILF with warts?  Would it be offensive if I started offering strangers Altoids and gum on the train?  I guess it would be less offensive than saying, “Nope. Nopenopenope.  Now it reeks in here.  Now it smells like nasty onions.  Learn to bathe.” and then going to another train.  But is it?  Is brutal honesty with a stranger less offensive than being passive aggressive?  I want to passive aggressively shove their faces in a bucket of mouthwash, but that might send me to jail for assault.  I need to contact a legal advisor for that one…


And when it rains?  As your favorite TV uncle Jesse Katsopolis might exclaim, “HAVE MERCY!”  It doesn’t just rain cats and dogs.  It rains diarrhea.  It rains stale vomit.  Imagine a towel in your bathroom left to air dry for over 3 weeks without washing.  At least that is what some of the passengers smell like all dressed in their finest outfits from Macy’s and Nordstrom.  I think we live in an era where we no longer feel we have the time to shower.  My only thought is that perhaps those travellers believe they can be rinsed clean from the rain.  Sorry, bitches.  That only works in Taylor Swift’s “Clean” or Hilary Duff’s “Come Clean.”  It will never, EVER, work for you.  And no, there is NOT an app for that.


When all is said and done, nothing says, “I love myself,” or, “I am a professional,” or even, “I don’t belong in a nursing home at the age of 28” quite like an old-fashioned shower, some deodorant, and some toothpaste.  Words of advice:  ANY toothpaste will work.  Do not get confused in the aisle when it comes down to the incredibly tough decision(s) of fluoride, dentist approved, whitening, spearmint, etc.  In the end, we are all going to die and our teeth will rot out of our skulls.  But until that time comes, let’s not make our judgy neighbors on the public transit believe you already DID die because you reek.  Think of others.  Let’s make 2015 the Year of the Best Smelling Sheep, not just the Year of the Sheep.  Always work towards improvement or that next level.  Because you need to realize that shitty smelling sheep get turned into tighty whities worn by old, fat farmers.  Clean and put-together sheep get turned into clothing Beyonce would wear.  Take your pick.  I, for one, choose a life more fabulous.  Bye.

Wait, what--

6 thoughts on “The Basic Traveler: Bring Your Own Air Freshener

  1. Oh dear god, that is pretty bad. I love wearing a scarf, especially in winter and I always spray perfume on it so if I encounter a smelly “friend” I act all cold and snuggle up in my scarf to inhale the nice scent of it

  2. Sooo…what I wanted to tell you but couldn’t (due in part to the 140-character limit on twitter, but also because of the fact that I didn’t want to share this with the twitter universe) was that I spent my entire second year of med school sitting in front of this dude that had frighteningly potent BO. To the point that he was actually called in by the administration to please take a shower. 😥 (This is why I breathe very shallowly as a habit now.) He was assigned as one of my friend’s partners for a physical exam and my friend almost passed out when he bent over. ;_; So I know the feel, good sir. 😥

    …and guess who sat next to me during my boards licensing exam, which is 8 hours long? :'()

    Someone was looking out for me from up above though, because I actually didn’t smell a thing (thankfully) during my exam. I think his wife made him take a shower. I am forever indebted to her.

    P.S. I like that scarf idea Nicole mentioned!

    1. Omg! Now THAT is a story!!! We need to find his wife’s address and send her the world’s greatest thank you card or just an uplifting message because I bet she needs it! And maybe a coupon for Yankee candles?

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