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The Lipstick Page Forums Beauty & Fashion Blog
Culture Notes: Youtube & perfume

Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Sunday, September 02, 2007 12:18 AM (Eastern)

There is a definite renaissance of perfumes lately (meaning the past few years I suppose). Why? Because it's one of the few beauty items that hasn't been played out? Because people now order just about anything online? I think it is caused by both, but my secret pet theory involves a complete misuse of chaos theory.

Just as the advent of cable television meant no television show, no matter how bad, could ever die, so did the advent of Youtube mean that no memory, no matter how trivial, could ever slide into the depths of oblivion.

For example, I was listening to Dain's favorite song lol "Glamorous" by Fergie:

Fergie - Glamorous (Dirty Version)

...and thinking, what does Fergie's rapping style remind me of? It's one of those edges of memory, where you have just enough of it inside your head to drive you crazy, wondering what the entire memory is.

Finally, I realized that part of it reminded me of Mick Jones' rapping in E=MC2:

Big Audio Dynamite - E = MC2

I haven't heard that song in eons; it was never my favorite song, particularly. In fact, only now do I realize all of the references in the song are to films directed by Nicholas Roeg. (Okay, I recognized The Man Who Fell to Earth, Don't Look Now, and Insignificance, at least.)

Thus, youtube has revolutionized memory itself. There are many, many, many videos on youtube of events I never (consciously) thought I'd ever see or hear again.

Now, to the really bad chaos theory analogy: don't perfumes do the same thing? When I smelled Creed's Fleurissimo, from my sample, I knew instantly I'd smelled it before. Who wore it, what decade that was...I can't place those things. If there were a Youtube for that...rolls eyes...

Is it possible the growing popularity of Youtube has somehow encouraged people to want to, or expect to, remember more?

Or is it the other way around? The resurgence of perfume is caused by people's desire to remember more, hence the growing popularity of Youtube?

Ultimately--are we going to forget how to forget?

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Colleen Shirazi continues to blog here: Life of Colleen
2 comment(s)
September 2, 2007 5:47 AM, Blogger Dain said...

That song defies so many odds. It revels in how bad it is. It's good at being terrible. I've gotten over the fact that no one expected Fergie to do anything after that one song she did with black eyed peas, and then she went vulgar, like so many b-listers do, and then she went solo, and surprisingly, is still successful.

There is some really weird video of Fergie as a young child. I think the show is called Kids Incorporated. It has her singing to a clown, it's creepy.

About perfume, actually, I think it's been this way the entire time. Perfume seems to inspire a sort of fanaticism that's an extra level above other cosmetics. I think it because people can take scent very personally; the people who collect perfumes en masse tend to know quite a bit about what they're buying, in a way that a senseless collector of eyeshadows does not, necessarily. What's been new is that the mass market lines dwindled in quality, and the niche brands took over. I think L'Artisan was really the first, and then Serge Lutens took the crown (and I don't see SL relinquishing it yet). This whole idea of a "nose" finding room for creativity instead of being stifled by mass market demands, I guess it is similar to makeup in the idea of a makeup artist line. But anyone can dab on eyeshadow, willy nilly, with practice. But it takes intelligence to appreciate perfume. I don't that has ever changed, since the first bottles were churned out by Guerlain at the turn of the century. I think this fact is obvious by the fact that it's always better to have the newest lipstick or face cream, but usually the most prestigious perfumes are the ancient ones that have such limited distribution (beyond LE) that they can only be found in moldy old shops in France or the Czech Republic guarded by crazy old ladies who sell only if they want to.

Perfumes remind me of wine. Or furniture. Of course you could use IKEA, but who (taste aside) would prefer it to a precious Chippendale?

September 2, 2007 12:45 PM, Blogger Colleen Shirazi said...

Hmmm... I agree, part of what's spurring a broader interest in perfumes, is the mainsteam ones have gone downhill.

I do think there is a connection though. It is different when you're older. I'm sensing there are young perfume fanatics, but there are probably more older ones.

When you get to be forty, you turn a corner. I don't mean forty literally although it feels that way (more metric I suppose). It's at that point, your memories have amassed...or things have changed to the point your earlier memories are too different from whatever's happening today.

Something simple...say a telephone answering machine. Before they existed, if someone called and you missed the call, that was it. If you didn't want to talk to someone, you didn't answer the phone. I remember the common practice was to hang up after seven rings.

It's trivial, for sure. But now, it's impossible to miss a call. It's impossible to avoid anybody. Nobody counts telephone fact you can't miss a call ever, because of cell phones and answering machines, and cell phones with answering machines. You can always be reached.

Take the VCR. Same thing...if you missed the tv show, that was it. Some special movies and shows were shown once per year; the kids would wait all year for them. The concept of the rerun...typically a show was rerun only once. A few shows became syndicated, but it was limited.

Now, if you want to see it, almost no matter what it is, it's a matter of opening a browser and clicking a few times. From something you could see once or twice in your lifetime--it's become, you can see it as many times as you like, whenever you like.

The VCR is not a new invention--probably the answering machine isn't either, but there was a lag in years between when they were created and when ordinary people started using them.

Those are only two small inventions that changed how people live and how they think. (Not even going into personal computers and the Internet.)

A memory that's ten or fifteen years old, is not the same as a memory that's thirty years old or more. I still think something like youtube, has influenced people into retrieving memories...things you forgot you'd forgotten, either because they were trivial, or, as likely, because you never thought you'd see them again.


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