I had prepared myself for this scent: Read statements, studied commentaries - some even multiple times. Of course I also rented the Ali Gualtieri documentary (The Nose) on Vimeo. I thought it was great, very likeable guy, incredibly playful, like a child. Fascinating! And to frame the whole thing, I went to a dozen YouTube reviews - in several languages, of course.
And then, fortunately, I had a small Comme des Garçons 2 sample at hand, the alleged fragrance twin, as a reference so to speak.
To disgrace, many people report almost the same thing, which is astonishing, and naturally made me feel confident: peach, peach, peach. Cream. Milk and rancid milk. Chemistry, chemistry, chemistry. Petrochemistry. A rose turned inside out, the green on top, in chemistry! Great!
When the scent finally reached me, I made further preparations to approach it safely: this will be the real "liquid hazardous waste", I thought, and smelled carefully on the underside of the chunky, yet light, lid. I shouldn't put it on before eating, either it would spoil the food, or the food would spoil the smell. So better eat first, then apply. And not too much at once - many have warned against that; so really only press very lightly on the sprayer. Now. Now.
Yeah. This stuff works on me. It's not a chemical spill I need to watch out for. No boom, no sci-fi synthetic. Hardly any peach. For me it's really just a softer version of CdG 2.
Embarrassment is originally conceived as a fault. And it seems to me that the desire to conceive a mistake is the real - mental - mistake with this fragrance.
Designed defects are controlled defects, and they simply do not exist. At least not in the sense that such a mistake should lead to something new, according to the principle of "too many aldehydes", which is said to have led to Chanel No. 5.
You can only stumble into something new. Intentionally and unconditionally - that is decisive. Every intention is a control of the result, every condition a limitation of the experiment. Analysis is paralysis, and interpretation is projection.
The mind works limitingly and is therefore always limited. Because it is limited, it can only think limitingly. The mind can do little with paradoxes. It can neither consciously bring them about, nor can it classify its actual role in them. In the "normal case" it operates, following the linear logic, only linearly. It prefers to go in circles so as not to stumble. Even with a synthesis of thesis and antithesis he does not really get far, because a paradox is not a figure of dialectic, but rather something like a quantum physical phenomenon, which cannot be measured with a compass and ruler.
The mind is limited - but its real limits are not physical. Rather, it is a virtual "real" of linear infinity: a circle from which only a quantum leap of one's own perception leads out - or a true error, which one must then recognize as such instead of "getting a grip" on it. Then it is no longer a mistake, but a realization. And that's probably how you get to the next level of perception.
That one has already tried out what is possible in principle within one's own realm of thought can be seen from the fact that the new appears more and more often than the newly-arranged old. Apparently new, but not unexpectedly new. Actually not new at all. If one continues as before, one always turns only in that invisible circle - to infinity, if you like. Discipline, endurance and perseverance - the motors of the mechanical world - keep this downward spiral in motion. One gets more and more into active doing, and further and further out of joy. Intention to leave the mechanical world is also a notch in the same line, for it is intention that gives this realm its limits.
Intention is always resistance, i.e. struggle with what is. The Daoist masters in ancient China knew this too. Therefore they raised the thought of "wu wei" (無為, the Chinese counterpart to the Japanese 無心 "mu shin") - the unintentional doing - to the maxim of life. For if you leave out intention, you do not, as feared by many, create aimlessness or uselessness, but rather a coherent naturalness and self-evidence: a childlike impartiality, to which any mental blockades are alien. Therefore, the path of the wise men always led back to childhood, that natural state that was so conscientiously and painfully withdrawn in the Confucian society.
So playing is the only thing that can help. Because playing knows no intention, is without control and without a goal. Here the activity itself is its own meaning: it is enough for itself. If one gives oneself to it, the fog of believed limits is lifted. At some point.
And then I have to say, good Ali plays the game! The shining eyes are not staged. He's totally enthusiastic! I believe him. I find it hard to see calculus. But the fact that CdG 2 comes out of his game, that's strange. Fifteen years after the release of CdG 2, Nasomatto reinvents CdG 2, as an embarrassment, but not an innovation. But in the game. Wow! I mean, there's this example that if you had all the monkeys in the world hammering into typewriter keys for all eternity, that at some point there would inevitably have to be a literary masterpiece or at least a big dictionary, so they say. In other words, in purely theoretical, statistical and mathematical terms, right? Seen in this light, the probability of reconstructing CdG 2 blindly (at three times the price) in just under two years, and without any intention of doing so, is probably close to zero - I don't know. So calculation after all? Or an ingenious mistake?
It is written on the packaging that this product is the result of care and bad decisions. But these decisions cannot have been that bad. In general, the idea of leaving the circle of reason through conscious "bad" decisions is just another illusion. For decisions - good or bad - are judgments, and judgments counteract the game, because they testify to intention. It's a trap.
Oh, yeah. Blamage is of course solidly built, that much is for sure - also I would wish him to be more aggressive and long-lasting. It seems to me that I have once again made quite a lot of tam-tam around a fragrance that I had probably imagined. That's where the many mental bla-blahs come from. The scent is certainly not embarrassing, and certainly not a mistake.