The Mindy Kaling Awesome Guy Challenge: Cologne

Tip No. 7: Have one great cologne that’s not from the drugstore.

“Just one. Wear very little of it, all the time. I cannot tell you how sexy it is to be enveloped in a hug by a man whose smell you remember. Then, anytime I smell that cologne, I think of you. Way to invade my psyche, guy! Shivers down spine central!”

I have a bottle of Adidas sport cologne that my aunt gave me for Christmas six or seven years ago. It’s still about a quarter full. Like my dress shoes, I typically reserve wearing cologne for nights out, and only when I happen to spot it in the medicine cabinet. Needless to say, I’ve never been a voracious wearer of the stuff. It’s not that I’m against cologne – as with a fair number of the items on Kaling’s list, I’ve simply never seen the need to invest in an odour. I wear Speed Stick. It’s glacier scented. I routinely smell like a centuries-old ice formation. Good enough.

My criteria for a new cologne was simple: something subtle yet distinctive that didn’t smell like my dad’s Old Spice. I went to Sephora and sniffed my way through probably about 25 different kinds. There are some thoroughly rank colognes out there, to be sure. Gucci won me over with its refreshing quality. There’s a trustworthiness to it. Looking into it now, I discover that it’s a cologne James Franco endorses in one of those hilariously over-the-top senseless artsy commercials:

I think Kaling is bang on about the olfactory trigger of colognes. I’ve known some women with distinctive scents, and thoughts of them always hit me like a ton of bricks when I come across the scents in daily life. The trick, of course, is using just the right amount. recommends applying it “sparingly around your neck and upper torso.” Usually I’ll walk into a spritz and take the excess around the nozzle for other areas. I’m going to try out the pulse point strategy of wrist-to-neck application.

Oh My God, Shoes

Kate writes: “You should retire your square-toed slip-ons. Mindy forgot to mention that, but she meant to include it. You need laces, you need a slimmer toe. Doesn’t have to be pointy, but a square-toe looks like an IT guy kind of shoe. Not a winning cut.” I agree. I’ve had those dress shoes for a few years now, and it’s probably about time I got another pair. That will be an aim in the new year. Kate also recommends something along the lines of these boots for the inclimate Vancouver streets:

The style is a bit too layer cakey for my taste, but I like the cut. A great point of reference. Thanks Kate!


About Joel Crary

Joel Crary is a 30'ish 21st century writer living in Vancouver, British Columbia. He enjoys films, mostly. View all posts by Joel Crary

5 responses to “The Mindy Kaling Awesome Guy Challenge: Cologne

  • Rachael

    I don’t know Gucci at all, but the best cologne scents are “Pi” by Givenchy, and “Le Male” by Jean Paul Gaultier. They are the only colognes I’m familiar with that aren’t overpowering. All colognes smell the same to me, with the exception of these two. They’re warmer. Obviously too late now since you already bought that one, but for future reference…

  • Emily

    David Lynch has also directed a Gucci by Gucci commercial! (bad quality, but you get the idea).

    • Joel Crary

      I think I remember hearing about this, but I’d never seen it before. Kind of Mulholland Drivey, with the two women. And the giant TV showing crazy stuff is an identifiable touch of his. When he shows the two women sniffing the air, you can almost hear him explain his rationale. “It’s a perfume. They should be smelling it.” Lynch.

      Not to go off on a tangent, but PS, I watched Terry Zwigoff’s “Crumb” last night (Lynch produced it) and thought of you. I hadn’t seen it in about 10 years and it’s thoroughly amazing if one of the most depressing documentaries ever. There are also a couple of “Ghost World” tie-ins that I’d never known about. The visual of Seymour’s record collection is totally based on Crumb’s. And the scene at the end of the “Ghost World” credits where Seymour beats up the guys in the convenience store and shouts, “Motherfuckers! Fuck with ME?” – that line was taken from a Crumb comic.

      Terry Zwigoff needs to make more films.

      • Emily

        I really love the GIANT bottle of perfume that one of the models is clutching in the last few seconds of the commercial. And I LOLed at “they should be smelling it!” So Lynch, you’re right.

        Damn, I’ve been meaning to watch “Crumb” for a while but had kind of forgotten about it. Now I REALLY want to watch it.

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