Thursday, 1 May 2008


When I was a kid my mates and I would constantly say things like: 'urrgh you stink' to each other. It's that much more surprising then that we're so inhibited by niceness that we rarely find the courage to tell people the same as adults. Chances are that when a kid tells someone that they smell funny it's not true. With adults it's almost the opposite. I once worked with a bloke who had excruciatingly repellent breath. Probably he'd got used to it or never knew. We complained to each other behind his back, left polo mints lying around and only talked to him from across the room or from behind a hand that was positioned to suggest pensiveness but we never took him to one side and said :'Look Bob, your gob smells like my dog's arse'. (but in a nice way)

The reason I mention it is because one of the people at my work always smells badly of fish. What do you do? I don't have an answer but feel like I should have one. Is it better to put up with it, cringing each time you see another person crease up their noses or to take them to one side and ask them if their shower is broken?

This website: offers an anonymous e mail service to inform colleagues of breath and body odour problems and have nasty and friendly versions. I think if received one of these I'd never go to work again.

I looked for etiquette advice and the best there seems to be for bad breath is to have a mint yourself then offer one to the offender. Supposedly they wouldn't know if you were just being friendly or maybe flagging up a problem. Somehow I don't think that walking up the fishy person with a bar of soap and saying: 'I'm just having a shower....' would get me anything but the sack. (from both work and my girl)

No comments: