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Oxygen low!

Oxygen low!

Thu, 10/06/2011 - 14:00 by Ananth in response to why did they put them all next to each other

I like it when things smell nice, but I don't like going into places that sell them. It's always an intense everysmell! The clothing store, I don't even get that. Is the idea to make customers pass out from the overwhelming cologne and then place you inside some sort of retail maze? And you're trapped in there with an angry minotaur in skinny jeans? That makes sense right?

Anyway we always hold our breath and jog through the odor miasma in front of stores like that. 

That's all! See you next week!


Dude I hate overpowering

Comment by Firework The Comic (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 14:13

Dude I hate overpowering smells, chemical odors, and everything like it. There's this one street on the way to my house where I have to literally hold my breath because of this nasty banana-nail polish-machine oil fragrance coming out of somewhere, I have no idea where.
Some Canadians told me that in Canada everyone is sensitive to VOCs so they allow very little of them in public spaces and offices, which is awesome! Then there are the fat magazines advertising mens and womens colognes...on various pages...

Oh yeah, happy birthday!

Comment by Firework The Comic (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 14:13

Oh yeah, happy birthday! Have a good one and thanks for the comics!


Comment by Pandiculator (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 14:19

Going to the mall is almost always a guaranteed headache for me, even if I try and hold my breath (guess I didn't spend my points wisely?) They need to invent a crystal chalice to ward off that miasma, yo.

(And happy birthday, Ananth! Thanks for being awesome?)

I read the part of this and

Comment by Hyle (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 17:25

I read the part of this and immediately thought:

The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle; the chalice from the palace has the brew that is true!

oh my god! my dad and i used

Comment by Ethne (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 18:30

oh my god! my dad and i used to say that every day.


Comment by Pandiculator (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 21:20

Not the reference I was going for, but I love The Court Jester!

I Betcha Conrad

Comment by youknowwhat (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 14:41

wouldn't have that big of a problem with it. I used to have a huge issue with stores like that back when my sense of smell wasnt completely dulled out, but now its just a matter of not opening my mouth too often. I end up in there a lot more often nowadays though because of my rather scent-obsessed friend.

Visited a Yankee Candle Factory Once

Comment by Sildraug (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 15:04

It was like getting hit with teargas. I could not breathe or see so long as I was in that building.

Also, Pandiculator--I don't care if I could do nothing else, I would definitely keep that thing with me.


Comment by Pandiculator (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 21:22

Ugh! That sounds awful! (The factory, not the keeping a crystal chalice with you)

If the goal of Smellister

Comment by kaze (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 15:12

If the goal of Smellister was to get me to never shop there cause the smell makes me want to barf, them mission accomplished.

Same at my mall. Hollister

Comment by Suri (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 15:12

Same at my mall. Hollister and bath and body works together. My mom and I run past the hollister because it's so DISGUSTING. I like cologne. I like guys who wear it because it's nice, BUT if I can smell it from 100 ft away, too much. It's supposed to be for more intimate situations! But bath and body works is still nice and so fresh compared to Hollister.
Pandiculator, reference is loved. I would love to have a crystal chalice. Train a dog to carry it!

Department stores too :P

Comment by Anonymous (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 15:34

Why do big department stores put the perfume section at the entrance to their store? I have to hold my breath and my fiance tells me when I can breathe again (his sense of smell is far weaker than mine). If I do catch a whiff, I'll be sneezing for the next 20 minutes. Similiarly, he knows better than to wear cologne (not that he used to) or even too much deodorant. Same goes for cleaning chemicals (cleaning the bathroom = sneezing), but if I have like, one candle in a room that is a natural-based scent like vanilla or fruit, that's fine. I can still smell it even when it's not lit and it's been sitting in the room for weeks.

Two reasons:

Comment by Jonn (not verified) Fri, 10/07/2011 - 06:32

1: To get smelling "nice" things and feeling better as you come in
2: Because scent is the strongest scent tied to memory, it may help you remember the store. Or you see some product in there later, and get the scent. Or something. They got their hooks in ya!

Abercrombie & Fitch

Comment by Tristan (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 16:27

I have a coworker who's brother used to work at Abercrombie & Fitch. He said they used to manually spray the scents every hour, but now there's an automatic system in the ceiling that douses everything with cologne. He used to come home and immediately have to take a shower and wash the clothes he'd been wearing.


Comment by Rayna (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 16:37




But seriously, this is so true. :(

Ugh... Abercrombie & Fitch

Comment by Chitaku (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 16:50

Ugh... Abercrombie & Fitch smells like horrible smelling dish soap to me whether you're on the top or bottom floor (the latter being where the store is) in that part of the mall. @_@. I swear there should be a regulation about how much a store can smell...

Happy Birthday, Ananth!

Replenish those oxygen

Comment by Anonymous (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 16:51

Replenish those oxygen levels at Cinnabon!

Happy Birthday!!

Comment by Alli The Hobbit (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 17:04

Happy Birthday Ananth! I hope it's full of love and spoils! (the good kind.)

Oh dear...

Comment by J (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 17:04

I've definitely experienced that before. There is the same issue with candy stores, too--especially ones that sell taffy. I just take a deep breath and run! I can always wait up for my friend to catch up later. ^^;

>> I don't get why they do it either. Heavily perfumed places make me feel sick and sometimes spur an asthma attack.

Maybe they would find it easier to sell stuff to those brave but foolish souls who have ventured in and fallen into oxygen deprived delirium?

Who knows~?

Happy birthday, Anath!

Comment by Nerdasaurus (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 17:51

It's my birthday, too! You are birthday buddies with a random person on the Internet! Time to feel special!

You have no idea.

Comment by Thrashy (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 18:01

I was briefly involved in an architectural project for a company that created handmade, artisanal soaps, and as part of that our firm made frequent visits to their factory.

Now, one bar of scented soap smells kinda nice, I'll admit it. The effect is a little more overpowering when you are surrounded by rack upon rack of scented soap bars curing by the thousands, with hot vats mixing up fresh batches in the room over, with cutting machines throwing soap sawdust into the air across the way. The smell goes up your nose, crawls through our olfactory system, and settles in your brain for days. Your clothes smell like soap. You hands smell like soap. Your hair smells like soap. Your food tastes like soap. You are a shipwrecked sailor, adrift on an ocean of soap that pervades every nook and cranny of your waking existence and haunts your sleep. You want to bury every cleaning agent in your home and stand in a hot shower for six hours, until the smell finally goes away.

They brought their dogs to work with them at the factory. Those poor animals...

haha, an exceptionally

Comment by Pandiculator (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 21:24

haha, an exceptionally visceral description. Love it.


Comment by Y (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 18:08

Yeeah, I don't run past them, but I avoid them if possible. My eyes start to itch!

And, you know, candles and incense contains horrible stuff. When burned, they produce significant carbon particles that are respirable in size range, and emit NOXs, CO, aldehydes, alcohol, and esters. Cause, those are totally all good for you.

Also, plug-in fresheners? They have formaldehyde in them. (ok, so does particle board, but still. Why would you put something to "make air fresher" that actually makes air worse?)

Yeah... That reminds me of

Comment by Hikki536 (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 18:36

That reminds me of yesterday when someone sat next to me on the bus covered in very very intense perfume... most nauseating 20 minutes ever...

I now want to see you draw

Comment by Demosthenes (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 19:16

I now want to see you draw an angry minotaur in skinny jeans.

Ditto to Demosthenes

Comment by Katsuya314 (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 20:02

It might almost be as interesting as the Taur-taur's. :3


I do that too. My mum and I

Comment by Cia (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 20:15

I do that too. My mum and I are allergic to perfume; it gives us horrible headaches. I was really glad when a lot of places started the "no scent" rule.

It's so true

Comment by Suzanne (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 22:11

I thought that I was the only one that did this and that everyone else was just immune to the smell. Thank you, I feel less alone!

Also, Happy Birthday Ananth! This comic brings me so much joy, so I hope that can make your day even more awesome!


Comment by Gunter (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 22:36

I do that exact same thing at my mall! I don't have a lot of them in a row, though.

True fact!

Comment by Kait (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 22:56

Allegedly, anyways. I have heard that they use the overpowering cologne smell/overpowering loud music combo to overwhelm a consumer's brain and cause reckless behavior and a lack of good judgement. Apparently they feel that is necessary to turn a profit.

1. Happy Birthday Annath! 2.

Comment by Anonymous (not verified) Thu, 10/06/2011 - 23:29

1. Happy Birthday Annath!
2. that is too true. I sometimes go into Hollister (only when forced by friends who have coerced me into shopping), but it is not a nice experience. Each room smelled like a different rotting tropical fruit, and one of the guys working there literally just went around spraying the air and every piece of clothing with super strong cologne. I was looking at a shirt, and the second I put it down, he picked it up and gave it a squirt before folding it and placing it back on the pile. I don't understand.

i do that too!

Comment by meg (not verified) Fri, 10/07/2011 - 00:55

aaaaah i don't like going into candle stores either! it's too intense for my nose... also, they reprimanded the one store in my mall (hollister i think) for spraying so much because they made the one whole wing of the mall smell like that perfume/cologne... ugh.

also, happy birthday anath~!!!!! enjoy :D

another year wiser

Comment by Olivia (not verified) Fri, 10/07/2011 - 01:59

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! Another year full of John. Your body may age but John remains the same

There used to be a section

Comment by Nick C!!! (not verified) Fri, 10/07/2011 - 04:16

There used to be a section in a shipping centre near me that had a soap shop and then a nails shop, every time i walked past i forgot and wound up nearly throwing up.

The clothing store is especially disconcerting

Comment by TrueVCU (not verified) Fri, 10/07/2011 - 06:43

A&F is downright unsettling. Between the cologne in the air, the low lighting, the giant posters of half naked dudes everywhere, and the music going OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ, I swear they seem to be doing their best to simulate the experience of going to a gay bar


Comment by Anonymous (not verified) Fri, 10/07/2011 - 08:08

...go find a floral shop and walk around. Natural smells are soooooo much better.

Happy Birthday!

Comment by Kimberly (not verified) Fri, 10/07/2011 - 08:28

Happy, Happy Birthday,
From all of us to you,
We wish it was our birthday,
so we could party too!



Comment by zacharykane (not verified) Fri, 10/07/2011 - 09:14

Firstly, happy birthday indeed. GIF celebration!

The mall is such a dead institution, I'm sorry you two had to go there for whatever reason instead of a downtown shop or the Internets... Someone mentioned Cinnabon which I've never seen outside a mall so I guess they have something going for them.

Thirdly? The image of you both speed walking with tightly sealed noses and mouths in the hall brought me back from self-imposed commenting exile to post this! Hilarious!

I have actually entered Yankee Candle

Comment by KicktheCAN (not verified) Fri, 10/07/2011 - 13:21

The next time I buy somebody candles for a present, I need to bring a gas mask of some sort.


Comment by Zaphy (not verified) Fri, 10/07/2011 - 13:26


This comic is fantastic. I seriously thought I was the only person in the world who did this. Now I know I'm not alooooone ;A;


Comment by HopelessOsaka (not verified) Fri, 10/07/2011 - 18:41


Happy birthday!

Happy birthday~ One wonders

Comment by Aikachi (not verified) Sat, 10/08/2011 - 10:46

Happy birthday~

One wonders why a clothing store is advertised by people who are not wearing shirts.

I don't understand the designer clothes thing. Why would you pay so much for a t-shirt that's just like any other t-shirt except for the logo on the front? I've never understood that o.o

I used to have the same problem with Cinnabon, actually. The smell of cinnamon buns makes me incredibly thirsty, even if I've got a straw in my mouth at the moment.

RGIS and Yankee Candle

Comment by WhiteRhinoPSO (not verified) Sat, 10/08/2011 - 12:42

I used to work for a company called RGIS that people would hire to do their store inventory every so often. I once got brought in to help count a Yankee Candle store in a shopping mall. It probably took us somewhere between four and six hours, and it singlehandedly made me hate scented candles.

The worse part was that, when we were finally done, my shirt had felt thicker and waxy, and it never went away. And I hadn't even been rubbing up against the candles, I had simply been in the store for a prolonged period of time.


Comment by Anya (not verified) Sat, 10/08/2011 - 19:31

I do the same when I'm at the mall. They have a Body Shop store in there and it's just...blech. D: So horrible.
But...what? Clothing stores smell? WHY? :|

And it's every one of those

Comment by Kuragari (not verified) Sun, 10/09/2011 - 00:36

And it's every one of those stores that smell like that when you pass by. It smells like some preppy pretty boy who forgot his shirt after an axe commercial.

At least it's not called Cadaver, Zombie and Stitch. I think that would smell much worse.

I feel your pain.

Comment by FinalFantazC (not verified) Sun, 10/09/2011 - 15:09

Every time I go to the mall I do the same thing. Also Happy B-Day Ananth!

Someone should open a store

Comment by Andi (not verified) Sun, 10/09/2011 - 18:44

Someone should open a store that sells gas masks. I have thought this for years! I bet it would get a lot of business :)

Hahaha so true!! They have

Comment by ruben (not verified) Sun, 10/09/2011 - 21:49

Hahaha so true!! They have that clothing store in Fukuoka too, the eau de toilete thing makes no sense! Gives you a smelly headache. Love this comic!


Comment by Anonymous (not verified) Mon, 10/10/2011 - 03:11

I don't see the point of holding my breath around these places, sorry.

As long as you don't kill your sense of smell with prolonged exposure to H2S (small concentrations) Benzene compounds (which men shouldn't expose themselves to anyway) Chlorides in bleach, Bench-strength Acids and bases and Concentrated Ammonia, It will continue to work for such exposures and afterward.

As long as I can breathe through my nose and not clog my pallette with the taste of perfume (such as when someone 'accidentally' sprays deodorant in your mouth, yay) around such places, I'm happy to take in the smell - I'm even more glad it doesn't smell like Landfill, Waste Processing, or 'used' cat litter (which is basically Ammonia.)

There will be plenty of smells in this world that you will never be able to put up with, so such places are nothing special (The smell of mouldy butter, anyone? a 'pleasant' trip indeed.)

haha EXACT same thing

Comment by Mason (not verified) Mon, 10/10/2011 - 12:15

haha EXACT same thing happened to me yesterday! Candle store, pedicure place, hair salon chain. UGH.