This week, my Facebook feed has been filled with posts about David Letterman, who ended a remarkable 33-year late-night-TV run on Wednesday. I was an intern at The Late Show in 2001 and an audience page in 2002, and I've stayed acquainted with a lot other former interns and staffers, so it's been bittersweet seeing all the memories everyone has been sharing.
I shared a few pictures on social media, as well as a video to accompany my favorite story from back then.
(If the caption cuts off, you can read the whole thing here.)
But I've been waiting until this Open Thread to share another memory: During my internship at The Late Show, I met the person who I still consider the most beautiful-smelling person I've ever met.
And I've met a lot of people, you guys.
While I was at Letterman, I specifically met a lot of celebrities because I was an intern in the talent department, which meant my job consisted largely of being a gofer for the guests and holding the door open for them as they walked from the backstage area to the stage. It was while they were passing me by that, if they had a distinct scent, I got a whiff of it.
I honestly don't remember anyone smelling bad. I remember thinking two celebrities in particular—Sarah Jessica Parker and Dan Rather—smelled amazing, but for the life of me, I cannot remember what they specifically smelled like. But one celebrity—one goddess of a woman—damn near knocked me over with her fragrant perfection.
Erykah Badu smelled like she'd been swimming in a giant vat of strawberry purée.
She floated past me like an angel—I think she was actually wearing all white, but I can't seem to find footage of the appearance, as if I dreamed the whole thing—and even though the scent of strawberries filled the small backstage area, it was a deliciously calming presence. She performed "Penitentiary Philosophy" (which became my unsurpassed favorite song of hers), levitated on a strawberry cloud past me and back to the dressing room, and left me to wonder how any human being could possibly be so convincingly magical.
I asked other xoVainers about the person who made the biggest scent impact on them, and here's what they told me.
Trista: When I met my husband, he smelled like trees, nag champa, diesel and old teak boat. It's such a hard scent to nail down—kind of musty, woody but warm. Whenever we stay on the boat for a time, everything smells like it, and I huff it incessantly.
Wendy: Can I say my grandma?
Hannah: I've been told I'm "the best smelling person I've ever met" by a few people so ... me?
- Who's the most oh-my-god-are-you-even-from-this-planet-smelling person you've ever met?
- Have you chosen a scent for summer yet? I think mine is gonna be Gentlewoman by Juliette Has a Gun. I'm pretty obsessed.
- What are your Memorial Day weekend plans?
- And, you know, whatever!