The Battersea Smell


There are clues to look for when you are internet dating. Old worn photos from another era, claims of a height under 5’9 (everyone knows men add 2-4 inches onto everything) and then there are those that think they are Richard Blackwood ie dated humour with unoriginal observations.

But this one my precious sounded perfect. Yes he was a wee bit young and lived at home but, I could forgive that. We are after all in the midst of a recession. Or so my accountant keeps reassuring me.  But he had a job and lived within the required 45 minute date zone in Clapham.

We agreed to meet in Battersea at what was once my favourite 1st date haunt, Revolution Bar. It’s near to the buses and station and has large enough windows that you can see your intended date approach and exit stage left if necessary.

But, I arrived first 10 minutes fashionably late. I ordered my cranberry juice (never drink ‘til you’ve met your intended victim) and in walked……The Smell.


I call him The Smell because as he entered the doors of the bar something in the air changed. At first I thought it was the electrical charge from his psychosis induced afro but one look and I knew that the evening was doomed. He walked up to me and I couldn’t help but take a sniff of the air. Was that……his breath!?!

He went in for the air kisses and I tried to duck but before I knew it he had kissed me near my mouth. The smell enveloped me and lingered. This was the dead gutter rat in the intestine type halitosis.  I thanked the dating gods that I had refused dinner and as he sat down I ran through feasible excuses.

Turns out The Smell had other ideas. He quickly revealed that although he lived with his parents he had a key to his younger sister’s place and if all went well was hoping that we would end up there that night.

Despite my disbelief I managed to stretch it out to about 25 minutes gulping down fresh air as I drank my cranberry juice. I was raised to be polite. He breathed and wordily retold the rancid tales of many a dating disappointment. He had lost his job 3 weeks prior. I tried to think quickly but the smell left my brain cells weakened. So I pulled the lame work excuse.

He looked disappointed as we walked to the station. Struggling for composure I tried to edge forwards as we waited for the train but then I felt him press himself against my backside, letting out a sigh (breath) on my neck and his raised interested quickly lowered my staunch politeness. I screamed NO!! and ran like Flo Jo onto the train. I didn’t even say good bye I just jumped on board and was finally able to breathe.

There is breathless with lust my precious and then there is fighting for air.

(C) Chelsea Black


  1. Pahahaahhahhaaaaa!!! This just cracked me up…but seriously though what’s up with people not being able to smell themselves? I get conscious if I get a whiff of “running odour” after I’ve rushed somewhere and I sweat. I REALLY abhor BO and Bad breath and can smell it on myself (if it EVER occurs)…I do struggle with telling people about theirs though. How does one do that?

    • If it’s a friend then you need to say something? Dude, what did you eat or did you sprint here usually highlight the point then drop it.

      If it’s a date, move on. life is too short to be fixing the world.

  2. I don’t think those that have those conditions are aware of it. The kind thing would have been for me to tell him about himself but who has time to counsel strangers or risk their wrath?

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