Author holds her favorite “enchilada” shirt. Photo by Anna Cox
Escape the Bubble: Head to a Pheromone Party
Yes, yes, and yes. It’s like that, but no. So what’s a pheromone party? Short answer: you sleep in a clean shirt for 3 nights in a row, bring it to a party in a bag, and let other people sniff it. Pretty much. Then you rummage through bags of T shirts, which smell too clean and pure to be of any use. Choose some you find appealing. Then you have your photo taken holding your selections. Your photo is flashed on the gallery wall in a slide show so that if the owner of that bag wants to approach you, he can. That saves hurt feelings, and presumably prevents further awkwardness.
According to Wikipedia, “A pheromone is a secreted or excreted chemical factor that triggers a social response in members of the same species. Pheromones are chemicals capable of acting outside the body of the secreting individual to impact the behavior of the receiving individual.” That’s what I’m talking about. Scientifically proven methods of man-trapping.
I heard about such parties through the digital grapevine we know as facebook. Less than 24 hours before one such party occurred, my omnipotent newsfeed alerted me to something Steven Colbert reported on, thus piquing my curiosity.
The party I attended, June 14, at Bootleg Gallery in Silverlake (hipster central) had big time media in attendance. Hoda Kotb, the front runner to replace Ann Curry, of the Today show interviewed me on camera asking for my reaction. I told her I went because it made such a unique story. It’s wild and crazy and I’d never heard of such a thing. A different journalist from the AP listened to me go on and on without taking any notes, then asked for my name. Crap! What did I say?
A party participant analyzes the author’s shirt.
Photo by Anna Cox
What you’ll see: Lots of plaid sporting, suspender wearing guys in thick framed glasses. Super nervous nerdy guys with shifty eyes like Batman looking for his lost cape. Several dudes with beards—the kind you want when a swarm of bees is looking for its queen. Good looking girls, all brunettes. People who do crazy stuff to see what happens. A room full of people just like me. You’ll hear dance worthy tunes. Like a wedding mix with all the super corny please-leave-now-songs weeded out. I’m calling it “Modern old school.” Things sound better when you’re buzzed.
The owner of #38, a red T shirt reminding me of enchiladas, did not seek me out. That’s cool. I just wanted to go meet other adventurous people who didn’t take themselves too seriously. There were a lot of cool girls just like that. The dudes I talked to were so geeked out by the fact that they were talking to an actual female, that it made me want to start a nerd socialization boot camp. There’s a need.
My mom’s review: “that just sounds weird.” She didn’t feel the need to explain. It’s really just harmless, geeky fun.
I would totally do this again, except bring some guy friends with me next time and play matchmaker. And I would take it more seriously. Go ahead and google “How to prepare for a pheromone party”. There’s results. 19 million of them.
Why you should go: You need to get out of the bubble on a regular basis—so you can feel like a little fish in a big pond again. Not the big frog in a little pond that we’re so accustomed to. For $20, not including my awesome $9 beer “Flying Dog Gonzo Imperial Porter”, and $5 plastic cup of liquid courage (wine), I got to experience a truly surreal feeling like characters in a Twilight episode. The only normies were the bartender, and the AP crew. Go for the photo. You’ll come home with a new profile pic and a great story.