Sunday, July 02, 2006

Febreeze saves the day.

I was telling a customer how to get to the beer store. We were both leaning over the counter, looking at a map, when I was engulfed by an odour so rank and rancid that I instinctively took a couple of steps back. It rose up silently from behind the other side of the counter like a malevolent mushroom cloud, spreading and deepening. Nostrils burning and eyes watering, I wondered how to address this issue. Normally I'd have made a smartass comment like "You been been eating some kind of wild game?" but this customer was a tourist (from Washington State), and I wanted to give him a good impression of polite Canadians. It would have been less than polite to point out that he'd probably just created his own personal hole in the ozone. But Mr. Malodourous didn't miss a beat, just kept on talking, then thanked me and left the store. Unfortunately the smell didn't leave with him.

I was reeling, waving my arms around, trying in vain to disperse the toxins, when - oh no! - I saw some more customers on their way from the parking lot. Panic. "Holy fuck, they'll think it was me!" I looked desperately at the aisle closest to me and spied the air fresheners, vaulted over the counter towards them (time was of the essence, the door was about to open), and let loose with a volley of odour-eating Febreeze. As the customers entered the store, greeted by rapid-fire gusts of "Linen & Sky", they said... "Hmm, smells nice in here".

I'll remember this for future olfactory emergencies. When there's no time to get the Hazmat team, I'm grabbing a can of Febreeze.