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28 April 2014 @ 12:14 am
Fragrance is a new obsession -- more like a new-old.

I've always liked them, but lately, I have been buying more than I should. I don't consider myself a collector, although the number I have can place me under the "novice collector" category. I just buy the fragrances I like, and those I'd blind buy and am tepid about, I'd give away.

This has been my life since about August '13.

To date, I more or less 40 bottles, and they are mostly scents marketed towards men. I tend to like them better mainly because most of them are not overwhelmingly something. By something I mean whatever category they fall under. For instance, there are some floral men's fragrances, but they stop short of becoming overly floral by adding an ingredient or two like vetiver or patchouli or something.

At least that's what I believe.

Plus of course, I like the fact that I don't smell like most women. :)
I have been following some fragrance reviewers in YouTube and it has been really fun watching their reviews and their top fragrances for a certain season (which is really something I don't follow. I live in the Philippines, and the temperature has always been within the summer weather bracket most of the time. I still wear whatever I want to wear even in summer -- even if it means the death of me.)

A few weeks ago, I have seen videos circulating about Fragrance Reviewer Tag wherein people in the fragrance community would answer questions posed by the creator, a guy named Lupe.

Since I am just a fragrance enthusiast, and camera-shy at that, I decided to just write about it here. :) (Really, this feels like I'm going back to my school age days, filling out slam book...)

Onto the questions!


1. What are your earliest fragrance memories?
My earliest fragrance memories root back from *perhaps* my preschool days. I remember two very distinct fragrances. Well three, actually. My grandmother used to wear Estee Lauder's Beautiful, and that is something I will always have very good memories on. There was even a time when I told her that when I land my first job, I will buy her a bottle of it. Sadly, she didn't live long enough to see that day. :(
Another fragrance I remember is Yves Saint Laurent's Rive Gauche for women. It was a scent my favorite aunt used to wear. I remember that smell was preceded by hairspray. That memory though, is more aural than it is olfactory.
Lastly, there was Christian Dior's Poison, my mom's scent. She still has the bottle to this day, and it has brought me nights of extreme annoyance. That was the strongest, most offensive fragrance I've ever smelled. These days though, I am learning to appreciate the perfume -- one time, I smelled it from the bottle and realized that really, there was beauty in it.
Maybe my mom just hasn't learned how to use it properly. Hee...

2. What was your first fragrance purchase?
My first fragrance purchase was a local retail brand called Bench, and it was Bench 8. I think it's trying to copy the freshness of CK One, but falls short on every category. For designer, my first purchase was Kenneth Cole Black. I remember smelling it for the first time, and I thought that if ice had a smell, it would be just like Kenneth Cole Black.
I still like it, but my taste has changed since.

3. What was your first niche purchase?
Easy. It was also a blind buy -- the infamous Creed Aventus. I still like the combination of birch and pineapple, but for some reason, my mom abhors it.
Oh well. I hated her Poison too.

4. What was your 1st blind buy?
It wasn't just one. It was one haul of blind buys. (bad... baaaad...) Back then I bought Terre D'Hermes (which surprised me, because it was nothing like I've smelled before), Dolce & Gabbana The One, Chanel Allure Homme Sport and Versace Pour Homme. I like all of them, but the last one, I gave away to my cousin as I thought I wouldn't be able to finish it all, anyway.

5. What was your best blind buy?
I love all of my blind buys -- most of my purchases are that. Although until now, I can't get over the beauty of Tom Ford's Noir de Noir. I call it the baby maker. Hee...

6. What was your worst blind buy?
Just like what I said, I love all of my blind buys, but if I really had to choose one that didn't agree with me very much, well, it would have to be D&G No.10 La Roue de La Fortune. The tuberose just made me queasy, although I adore patchouli. Mont Blanc Individuel is also a bit of a disappointment for me, but I think it's okay.

7. What are your favorite fragrance notes?
The first one I was able to clearly identify, and one of my favorites (really) is Violet Leaf. I also love love loooooove Rose (dark ones more, especially when combined with oud), I also love Patchouli and Bergamot.

8. What is your favorite fragrance house?
This is quite difficult, because I love a lot of fragrances. I would like to mention my top 4. Fourth is Christian Dior, third is Guerlain, second is Tom Ford and my top 1, the one I love love love most is Hermes. I love Jean-Claude Ellena.

9. What fragrance best describes you?
This is a little difficult because it is akin to a signature scent -- which is something that I don't believe in. I don't want to get stuck with one fragrance, one scent. Life would be boring that way. If I really really have to choose. of the bottles I own, I think it really will be Noir de Noir, because it is quite a sensual fragrance, and that is just me, introvert, sensual, romantic. It's also a special occasion smell, so I guess that side of me also doesn't show up really easily. ;)

10. What is your favorite fragrance?
I will not choose just one. I love Dior Homme and the Intense version; L'Instant de Guerlain and the Extreme one too; Midnight in Paris by Van Cleef and Arpels, Bleecker St. by Bond No. 9, and of course... Noir de Noir.

11. What is your fragrance profile?
I am still unclear about what this means, but I generally think that I like the Orientals. :)

12. What are your fragrance resolutions going forward?
I truly would like to explore a lot of niche houses. I am interested in Histoires de Parfums, Imaginary Authors, L'Artisan Parfumeur, Etat Libre D'Orange, the exclusive lines of Dior, Chanel and Guerlain (ESPECIALLY L'Art et la Matiere), and a lot more. Unfortunately, the only ones available in the Philippines are Creed, Bond No.9, Comme des Garcons, Maison Francis Kurkdjian and Penhaligon. Oh there's also Diptyque and Annick Goutal and some others but they all cost an arm and a leg. :'(
22 September 2011 @ 11:02 pm
( You are about to view content that may only be appropriate for adults. )
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
22 September 2011 @ 10:57 pm
This is a story that I have published in fanfiction.net about Kalinda and Alicia. :) 

Alicia means Noble (kind) and Kalinda means Sun when I searched for their names in baby books, therefore the title.
Disclaimer: I do not own The Good Wife – I just watch and giggle whenever she is in the scene. I am borrowing scenes and lines from the last four episodes (2x20 – 2x23) – therefore there are spoilers. I hope the product of what I have written is what transpired in the moments we weren’t able to see.
I am a first time writer. I will appreciate your feedback. This will be a multi-chapter story, rated M for slash.
Note: Thanks to SSJL for encouraging me.
And my deepest, deepest gratitude to MirandaMinerva for holding my cyber hand while learning how to walk this fan fiction road, you have become my Obi Wan Kenobi. J This is for you.
Chapter 1
She was never into melodrama. She could never understand the concept of walls closing in, of hyperventilation, of sliding behind closed doors as tremors violently course through the body. No, she had never experienced any of that, and this was the only thing that kept her from breaking down when she first learned the news.
The man finally caught up with her. No matter how expertly she avoided him, he was still able to corner her at the overpopulated celebratory party for Peter. She should have anticipated it. Even someone dressed like a vagabond could slip unnoticed among the suits.
She looks at him with overt sarcasm and a hint of disgust. Like a dog hounding passers-by for food and attention, he walks up to her refusing to be shut off.
“…Blake’s testimonial…” his words cut in and out of her consciousness, “…he said that…”
She is preoccupied perfecting her facial expression so that the proper combination of irony, disbelief and boredom is conveyed.
“…Until I found out that there was not an employee by that name.”
Alicia laughs sardonically and walks out, triumphant that this man has finally hit a steel wall. No more calls, no more stalking, no more forced niceties from her part.
Then she hears it – a name she once heard: a name that is now pounding on her ears, threatening to make her head explode.
The name. The name.
The name is now following the cadence of her heels as she walks away. Lee-la. Lee-la. Lee-la – becoming the very rhythm her heart beats into. Lee-la. Lee-la. Lee-la.
And no matter how she wills it to stop, it just persists even more – sound and sense heightening until she can no longer hear and feel. All that’s there is the constant spinning in her head – but no walls close in, no breath is quickened and no tremors course through her body. It is just her and the pounding and the spinning.
Until –
It stops. A light bulb flicks. A grin spreads.
A sense of calmness and a growing resolve – her calculated actions form in her head, like a soldier’s map, locked and labeled with a dog tag in her mind.
The tears, of course, cannot be avoided. She never held back or resented them. Like the waves of the ocean, she let them ebb and flow. They are, after all, just tears. Alicia knows that the occasional presence and the more frequent absence of tears are meaningless to her agenda. After all, she has taken care of the difficult part that dealt with her family – the loss of innocence, the unfounded accusations and the sowing of a perpetual grudge.
Phase two commences with much worry and trepidation. She was never that good an actress to fake emotions. Of course, if one counts her legendary poker face in Peter’s now infamous press conference, one would think that keeping an act is a walk in the park. But this – this requires a different kind of face. It is the kind that offers the difficulty of always being with emotions – emotions that are not only inexistent, but the complete opposite of the reality she is living.
She wakes up that morning with renewed vigor (and somehow a muted sense of dread) that she almost jumps out of bed. There’s a rhythm playing in her head – a series of tasks repeatedly recited like a mantra. Her actions start giving off a certain level of musicality, one that comes from the predictability of pace.
It starts with the soft squeak of shower knobs turning followed by the rush of water drops and the varying sound they make as each drop falls onto different surfaces.
She smiles as the water wakes her up.
So much better than coffee, she thinks to herself. The sensuality of the gentle dripping of water on her body arouses her as she imagines what her plan can lead to.
Better enjoy it too, she muses. But not now – not yet.
She hurriedly finishes her bath and silently resumes the recitation of her mantra. After a few laborious minutes spent in her morning routine of making herself smell and look professional, (with undertones of worldliness) she emerges from her bedroom appearing confident. Inside, she’s still shaking – from doubt, from residual trauma and from disbelief.
I am really going to do this.
Squaring her shoulders, she walks out the door and into the closing elevator in a span of seconds.
She arrives at Lockhart Gardner disoriented.
Being consumed by thoughts and then forcibly pried out of that reverie by lack of sensory stimulation results in a twilight zone experience. She makes a mental note of it. The monochromatic three-piece suits that flock the equally colorless building where the offices are located drown her senses with dreariness. The unidirectional and monotonous flow of professionals going in the gleaming glass doors of the building reminds Alicia of the Stepford wives – only these are Stepford lawyers, accountants, businesspeople etcetera etcetera.   
She quickly snaps back to reality as soon as she sees the lacquered walls of the office. The smell of ink drying on paper grounds her senses to the present.
“The report you asked for last week has been amended,” says her assistant. “It’s on your desk.”
“Thanks, Courtney. I’ll review it.” And with a few words, together with the speedy click clack of Alicia’s stilettos, her plan fogs into the background of her consciousness. A week ago, she was involved in a lawsuit that had a tyrant involved. She asked her assistant to do the documentation of the case, and the initial draft was lacking some important information about translation and languaging. She now has the task of rereading a 50-page document and checking not only for completion but accuracy.
At the end of the week, she recovers from her temporary amnesia – and it is by accident that she remembers what she is supposed to do.
Alicia wanted to ask Will a very important question about the deposition and her feet carried the evidence of her rush. Through the glass door of his office, she sees her talking to him, stance clearly indicating the seriousness of their discussion. She freezes on the spot, disorientation taking over once more.
She knows she is supposed to feel awkward about Kalinda being around, and she does. But why – she can’t seem to point out just what it was.
Kalinda walks out of Will’s office at the same time she turns around to finish her task.
“Hey.” Kalinda greets her with a cheerfulness that is solely hers – cheerful but not quite.
“Hello,” Alicia calls back, teeth ground together in a forced grin.
“Hello. Everything alright?”
“Yep,” Alicia’s smile is plastered on her face. She knows she is looking more and more like a fool by the second. “Gotta get to – work.”
They both nod at each other politely, determined to keep their hours at work doing exactly what they are supposed to do. In the past, they both knew that however little time they had to exchange small talk inside the office, they could always make up for—during their after-work tequila shots.
And that is the only reason Alicia can breathe a sigh of relief – she knows her secret is safe. She can continue with her plan. As she watches Kalinda walk away, her memory comes back full force. Once again, her mantra begins and she swears she will never allow herself to get sidetracked ever again.
She is going to have what Peter had. 
Current Mood: worriedworried
05 September 2011 @ 02:32 pm
Title: Rewind. Play.  And a First Taste.  
Prompt: Rewriting History
Word Count: 100
Fandom: The Good Wife
Pairing: Alicia/Kalinda
Rating: PG
Disclaimer: The characters are owned by CBS and the producers. No copyright infringement intended.
A/N: Un-beta-ed, LJ first timer. J
Leela would never drink again. She just slept at her desk.
And she had the weirdest dream about a woman berating her for sleeping with the husband.
Inside Peter Florrick’s office, she saw the same woman she just woke up from.
“Sorry. Needed to drop these.”
A smile. “Hi. Alicia. Florrick.”
“Peter’s in some meeting – and I forgot!”
“Peter Florrick’s wife, huh? You must need a drink.”
A laugh. “I want to. But I shouldn’t.”
“Have it your way.”
“Wait. It wouldn’t hurt.”
“What are we drinking?”
“Like body shots?”
“We can do that.”
“Yeah. Maybe we can.”
Current Mood: curiouscurious