Aug 5, 2008

Primitive senses and ment-o-portation

When I did my medical school, I was engrossed with the senses that advanced/evolved organisms had. The five major senses which were all neatly packaged within our own heads were classified in the order of advancement. Vision/Sight ruled above the other four (smell a. k. a olfaction, sound a. k. a. audition, taste a. k. a. gestation and balance and equilibrium) so much so that the others were considered as primitive senses.

I have had my own set of (different) views as I was interested very much in cats and other mammals. Such beings depend on their ‘primitive’ senses far more than us. I think it is easy to understand why someone would become fascinated by this fact. I mean, look at the graceful yet brutal way in which the bigger cats hunt down prey. It fits in so well with your sense of sexuality and pleasure, doesn’t it? There have been theories (debatable) propagated which link up olfaction, sex and emotions.

I think I digressed a bit. The reason why I am posting about this rather unlikely topic is because of something that happens to me every day; the memories associated with my primitive senses; especially, the olfactory memory and auditory memory. Getting confused? Here’s an example.

I was watching VH1 today evening and I watched a video from the mid ‘90s by Aerosmith called ‘I don’t want to miss a thing’. I was suddenly transported back to my first year of medical school. For a few seconds, without me realizing, I felt like back then. Carefree, na├»ve and worry-less, I felt like running down the stairs at my home and going out to my friend R. B.’s apartment for an all encompassing talk about what came to our minds. It is not just memories. It’s more like ment-o-portation (noun: an act of being moved to a state of a different set of feelings, usually in the past, totally unrelated to the present feelings; mental tele-portation; etymology: Engayging Life, the blog).

Stronger, though, is my olfactory memory. And it is, for all your kinky ones, associated with sex. (At least, my digression makes sense now.) I can feel the touch of my partners if I smell their perfumes, deodorants, aftershaves or a simple talcum powder! It is so unreal and it freaks me out. And to make it even juicier, I have these things with me always so that I can get some ‘kick’ out of it every now and then.

Funnily, I don’t have Vinokur’s. I have perfumes that he’s gifted me. But I don’t have what he used to wear which, as I realized right now, is something that I can easily buy to complete the little inadequacy. And as a tip, such olfactory materials help to lighten the heavy-workload of a long distance relationship. In fact, one of the commonest tips to maintain such a relationship is to send scented postcards and perfumes.


flygye12 said...

my olfactory centre is almost always dormant when im on land because of allergies/pollution etc, so as a rule it comes back into action only in the fresh air of the sea :) so no sense in takin bebe's deo (cause i can't much smell/remember what he wears)
and i can't present one to bebe cause i don use any deo/perfume :(

Kris Bass said...

But still, consider this. It might help you in your 'away' time.

Anonymous said...

The way things smell bring back memories very vividly to me.

Not long ago I was driving along and through the window came a disinfectant/decay/unpleasant smell. I was suddenly catatonic with fear and felt I was back in a hospital recovering from an accident. It became so real to me, that the reality of being in a car dissapeared for a couple of seconds.

On the otherhand smelling a baby brings back some very happy memories.

A well wisher in NYC

Kris Bass said...

@ AWWiNYC: There you go. Similar mental outlooks. Similar olfactory memories.

(PS: Could you give me your e-mail. I wanted to have a personal exchange between the two of us.)

Anonymous said...

Sending you an email to

A well wisher in NYC

pepe M. said...

au naturelle is still the best smell...specially the smell surrounding the crotch area...ahhh! :)

Kris Bass said...

@ Pepe: Yes, but you can't bottle it and carry around!