4. jun. 2008

The Scent of Desire

The sense of smell is very suggestible. It didn't evolve in a world where there was fragrance and perfume and aftershave. There's evidence suggesting in divorce rates that the [divorcée's] sense of smell was off. There's also good evidence that people who are similar in terms of their immune systems have a more difficult time conceiving, whether they're twenty or forty. So I think the reason women are having such a hard time conceiving these days is not just because they're [having children when they're] older, but also potentially because she met the guy while on the pill, or his cologne swept her off her feet, and by the time she got to really smell him it was too late because she was in love with him.

©2007 Nerve.com and Catrinel Bartolomeu

The Smell of Love

"Why do bulls and horses turn up their nostrils when excited by love?" Darwin pondered deep in one of his unpublished notebooks. He came to believe that natural selection designed animals to produce two, and only two, types of odors—defensive ones, like the skunk's, and scents for territorial marking and mate attracting, like that exuded by the male musk deer and bottled by perfumers everywhere. The evaluative sniffing that mammals engage in during courtship were clues that scent is the chemical equivalent of the peacock's plumage or the nightingale's song—finery with which to attract mates.

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