Kafkaesque Turns One – Anniversary & Giveaway

A year ago today, on December 6, 2012, I began Kafkaesque and started this little journey. Despite lengthy reviews (that are increasingly becoming even longer) and despite my peculiar obsession with details, many of you have been with me from the start. Others are newer readers who have been a joy to get to know. I appreciate each and every one of you, and your support has gotten me through some rough patches when I was less than enthused about this whole endeavor. (There was a period of time this summer….).

So, coming up after a review of the past year, I’d like to thank you with a giveaway. It’s far smaller than what you deserve, but I’m afraid it’s been a very expensive year for me due to some non-perfume related matters. I wish I could give you all a gift in appreciation, but, alas, that is not possible.

[UPDATE 12/9 Random.Org has spoken and the winner of the drawing is ELLEN. Please contact me with your choice of gift.]


Some of you love numbers (you know who you are), so I thought I’d share a few with you. This is actually my 310th post in 365 days. I think my numbers would be better if I hadn’t gone away on vacation for more than 2 weeks. 😉 I’ve tried to figure out how many perfumes I’ve reviewed, but it hasn’t been easy. There are 292 posts with the tag “perfume review,” but I’ve had a number of posts that discussed more than one fragrance. I recall at least 10 posts covering 2 perfumes, 5 posts that covered 3 fragrances, and at least 4 early posts that briefly summarized 5 or more. So, at a conservative estimate, I estimate that I must have reviewed, either in-depth or en bref, at least 350 perfumes.

Out of all those reviews, the vast majority have not been raves. Prior to going on holiday and returning with samples of things that I liked or that seemed interesting on the surface, I had a lot more negative reviews all in a row. At a rough guess, I’ve estimated that only 1 out of every 15 reviews prior to my trip was a wholly positive one for a fragrance that I absolutely loved, would wear myself, or would buy. Perhaps 1 out of 18 if we’re going by things that I liked enough to end up getting for myself, or that are on my dream wish-list. The rest of the reviews were either highly qualified, or extremely negative. Since my return with perfumes that I’ve bought or liked enough to ask for samples of, the numbers have improved a little, but I suspect that won’t last for long, once I return to blindly ordering samples of things to test.

In one year, I’ve had 313,540 hits (at last check), and some of those are the result of extremely amusing searches. I’ve kept an ongoing record of the more unusual or obsessive ones that have brought people to the blog, and I think you may get a laugh out of a lot of them. A few may make you blink at the spelling, smile about the things people look for (like ancient dandruff shampoo from the 1980s), or just simply make you scratch your head.

The following are all copied verbatim and without change. The number in parentheses at the end of the line is the number of times that one search led to the blog:

  • recreating the smell of a dirty vigina
  • dark magic death perfume
  • what part of his body would another woman’s perfume be on
  • muscle man sex art (x4)
  • gay bodybuilding masturbution
  • giant gay muscle (x3)
  • morph gay muscles (x9)
  • hairy gay (x10)
  • how long before jacking off after getting a prince albert
  • semen of men uncensored
  • fat peeing lion! (x2)
  • aphrodisiac spray forming mating ceremony erotic family friend sub indo
  • classic sex (x71) — [as opposed to unclassic sex??]
  • classicsex (x13)
  • Calling a man soft as a pussycat
  • hi honey, i remember what i want, frankincense, there is a store called amouage, that sell the best from oman
  • jicky coitus
  • can anyone justify the hefty price tag on tom ford’s perfumes (x4)
  • leathermen gay fetish
  • Tom Ford’s genitals
  • Tom Ford crotch smell (x2)
  • perfume that smells like female genitals (x2)
  • genital scented perfume (x4)
  • genitalia perfume (x12)
  • genital perfumes (x11)
  • medicated dandruff shampoo from 1980’s in orange/brown bottle (x2)
  • hairy gay semen
  • war child ‘charity’ co- founded by member of royal family involved in arms lobby for bosnian muslims (x6)
  • agarwood aroma lengthen penis (x6)
  • french perfumes of human sweat and penis (x4)
  • decomposition smell in female body during sex
  • ladies in mohair sex bondage photos
  • m.pornduh japanese indian
  • a customer has reject his order of roast beef, he want a replacement of chicken fricassee. how would you deal with this difficulty and solve the problem (x11)
  • panty dropping cologne in a square black bottle
  • boy man sex
  • www. fatewoman sex images.com (x7) – [I added a space to remove any link to whatever site that may be in case it’s infected with malware.]
  • germany sex drops for female love sex liquid in bangalore/mysore retail shops names and address list (x3)
  • pictures of adam levine’s feet (x2)
  • lisa raye feet (x13)
  • what time to tobacco leaves on iris open tomorrow but i did
  • dirty sex hair
  • queen elizabeth small penis artificial insemination teaspoon

Now, you may wonder what on earth I’ve written that could possibly lead people to Kafkaesque with some those searches. Well, between the old historical articles in the archives on royalty, history, and gastronomy, and the discussion of Patrick Suskind’s rather gothic classic, Perfume, I’ve covered a wide range of different subjects that could trigger those hits. Still, there are some oddities there, no? I try not to judge people or what they may do in their private lives, but I’ll never understand the desire to know what a dead woman’s decomposing body may smell like during sex. I also don’t understand why Google somehow thinks that one of my articles may help this budding necrophiliac or future serial killer.

For that matter, I don’t think I can help anyone with a foot fetish, or in search of a giant morphing gay muscle. My usefulness seems to be much better suited to those many (many!) people who want to know which perfumes smell like genitalia…. 😉  

Amusing oddities aside, the vast majority of people seem to come to the blog to learn about perfumery, the perfume industry, or Serge Lutens’ Chergui in specific (which says something about Chergui!). Out of the 309 posts prior to today, the top 3 are:

A Beginner’s Guide To Perfume: How to Train Your Nose, Learn Your Perfume Profile, & More 5,527
Perfume News: 2013 Fragrance Sales Figures, Revenue & Fragrance Markets 4,989
Perfume Review- Serge Lutens Chergui: The Desert Wind 4,855

So, onto the fun stuff! To thank you for your kindness, your friendship, your patience, and your support, I’d like to have a little Anniversary giveaway.

One (1) reader will get a $50 e-gift certificate to your choice of either Surrender to Chance or Beauty Encounter. I chose those sites for two reasons. One, I have a slight phobia about going to the post office. I realise that sounds ridiculous, but you would understand if you lived where I do, knew the highway logistics for the post office closest to me, and had to go through all the hoops I have to go through every time I want to send a package. In short, I love many of you, but I don’t love you enough to brave the United States Post Office — during the insanity of the holiday season, no less!

Second, and equally important, I wanted a site that would be useful to any international reader who may win. Surrender to Chance has almost no limitations on where they will ship, while Beauty Encounter ships to more than 30 countries and has some great discounts on a wide variety of niche lines. Whether you choose samples as a way to explore more lines or newly released fragrances, or whether you decide to put the money towards the purchase of a full bottle of perfume, I hope you find something you like. If the winner has a different site in mind, perhaps one that carries a perfume they already want or that offers a better price on that fragrance, I’d be happy to go with their retail choice so long as it offers e-cards.


My purpose with this giveaway is to say thank you to those who have been on this journey with me through all these long months, so I have the following limitations on who can join. The Giveaway is open only to the following people:

  • Anyone who has either subscribed to the blog via email, or who has “liked” the Kafkaesque Facebook page as of yesterday, December 5th;
  • Anyone who lurks, hasn’t feel comfortable enough to officially post a comment, but quietly emails me at Kafkaesque on the side to talk about perfumery or something I’ve written; and/or
  • Anyone who has left 3 or more comments as of yesterday, December 5th, on the blog or its Facebook page, whether you are officially signed up or not. This way, those who follow by a Blog Reader, but who comment, can also be included.

Your geographic location does not matter.

Since I get almost no traffic from the blog’s Twitter account, I’m not going to include those people who follow on Twitter unless they have personally and directly communicated with me on that site in some way as of yesterday.


If you fall into any of the categories above, all you have to do enter is to leave a comment here on the blog using your regular posting name, your Facebook name, or the email with which you subscribed to follow Kafkaesque. I will check any unfamiliar names or email addresses against the official WordPress or Facebook lists out of general fairness to others.

The entry period starts today, Friday December 6th, and will last until Sunday, December 8th, at 11:59 p.m. CST, my time, in the U.S. I will choose a name via Random.org, and announce the winner in an update to this post on Monday, December 9th. You then have 2 days to contact me by email at AKafkaesqueLife @ gmail . com (all one word, scrunched together) with the email address to which you’d like the e-gift certificate sent.


It’s been a fun year, and I’m looking forward to seeing what the next one has in store. There are a few things to do first, however. In a few weeks, I’ll come out with some of my personal “Best of” lists soon, from an overall Top Ten or, maybe, if I’m simply unable to choose, a Top 15 or Top 25. Perhaps I’ll do all three with a Top 10 that also includes the next 15. I haven’t decided yet. I’ll also try to do a Top 5 by genre or category, whether chypre, leather, amber, or some other note.

Since I generally believe that all fragrances are unisex and a matter of personal style or taste, I’m not going to separate things out by masculine or feminine. I know men who wear Carnal Flower, Shalimar, or Rubj, just as I know women who wear Black Afgano, Sycomore, or Bois d’Ascece. It’s insulting to the vast majority of readers to pigeon-hole them into narrow categories, or to assume that they don’t have the taste or experience-level to appreciate a wide variety of genres. Gender classifications are outdated, and it’s not my issue if some people have narrow, wholly subjective perceptions about what fragrance is appropriate for men or for women. (Yes, this is a subject that irritates me.)

A small part of me would also like to do a Top 10 “Worst of” List, but that’s not very nice. Plus, I’m not sure I could narrow things down that much. My number one choice would probably be a small fragrance that I haven’t officially reviewed, simply because I refuse to revisit the ordeal. All I’ll say is that its name begins with the last letter of the alphabet. Then again, Ormonde Jayne’s Montabaco left a permanent scar and ongoing trauma regarding ISO E Super, while YSL’s Noble Leather made me want to stab someone. So, let’s just forget about the truly unpleasant ones.

Lists aside, in the more immediate future, I’m going to subject all of you to my personal obsession with patchouli by covering at least 7 (real, non-purple) patchouli scents in the next 10-14 days. I apologise in advance to those of you who don’t care for the note. To ease your pain, I’ll try to intersperse the reviews with coverage of some other types of fragrances, including one vintage favorite.

So, that’s it for the last 365 days. Thank you all for sticking by me, and for all your encouragement. I really couldn’t have done this without you. I mean that quite sincerely. Without all of you — the regulars, the friends (old and new), and those who lurk but who send me emails to let me know that they appreciated something I wrote — I would have stopped long ago.

Happy holidays, and let’s have even more fun in 2014!

154 thoughts on “Kafkaesque Turns One – Anniversary & Giveaway

  1. Dear Kafka,

    Happy blogoversary! I can’t believe you’ve done 310 posts: what were you doing for the other 55 days?!! Ok, there was some very short vacation in France (it was very short, right? 😉 ) but the remaining, let’s say 50?

    Of course, I’m joking: I’m amazed by your ability to review perfumes the way you do. And I wish you for the next year to have more lucky streaks of great perfumes.
    I think I came to you blog from Mr. Hound’s post where you commented but I’m not 100% sure… Were you commenting on any other blogs at the time?

    I hope you won’t get offended if I do not participate in the draw.

    • Thank you, Undina. I will try to work on my numbers for 2014 to ensure a much less lazy schedule. 😉 LOL. No, I’m not offended if you don’t participate in the drawing. I’m sure you have your reasons.

  2. Aha, I follow via blogloving? xD Although the Kalemat was the one who got me to post comment (IT’S ON ITS WAY 🙂 congratulations is still in order to you. Only perfume blog I’m following and I look forward to your reviews. I might not be so trigger happy but at least it will be something to look forward too.

    • Thank you, Vi. I really hope the Kalemat works for you. I hope I can find something in 2014 that may tempt you as well. 🙂 And I look forward to getting to know you better.

  3. Happy anniversary, Kafka, and thank you for all the passion and dedication. Wish you many more years and many more discoveries.
    The perfume community can only be grateful; I believe many of us use your reviews daily as a main point of reference when looking up a scent.
    So, don’t stop writing, and don’t stop being critical and detailed in your posts.
    Please. 🙂

    • I’m very touched — as always — by your high praise and kindness, Bruno. I’m not sure I deserve quite so much, but I value your support and encouragement more than you know. Thank you for always being there.

  4. Happy 1st birthday, its absolutely unimaginable to me how on earth you can review 300+ fumes in one year retaining must read consistency! Bravo I say … Bravo!!!

    • LOL! Being an insomniac with a sleep disorder and an extremely fast typist certainly helps with both the number of perfumes I can test, and the frequency of the reviews. 🙂 But thank you for the compliment and the praise. I’m very touched. And I hope I get the chance to know you better in the year to come, Vlad. Don’t be such a stranger! You’re on my list at #49. Good luck.

  5. HOORAY!! Kafka this is a wonderful milestone. I am so pleased for you and hope you are enjoying the experience. What an amazing year you’ve had, I predict a FIFI nomination next year, at least.
    Don’t enter me in the draw, I wanted to BRAVO you.
    Portia xx

    • Dear Portia, your kind words and high praise mean more to me than you know. I am really, truly touched. Thank you for your generosity of spirit, and your sweetness. I hope I get to know you better in 2014, and I hope it’s a great year for both of us. xoxo

  6. No need to include me in the draw, Kafka. I just wanted to offer up my sincere congratulations on your first anniversary of blogging, and to say that your work ethic is astonishing, your writing fabulous, your honesty something to salute, and your friendship much treasured. In a word, you’re a dynamo! I don’t know how you do it, but here is to your continued success. oxxo

    • Thank you, my dearest Suzanne. Your friendship is treasured too, as is your endless encouragement, your thoughtfulness, and your kindness. I’m so grateful that you pushed me to continue this summer when I was struggling. Thank you for that, and for everything, sweetie.

  7. Many congratulations to you, your blog, and the community you have been able to gather here and who reads your posts, happily and eagerly, as studies in perfumery. To many more years and articles to come.
    Much luck and smelly good fortune.

    • Thank you, WeFadetoGray. I’m so glad you’re here, and I look forward to getting to know you better in the upcoming year! Here’s to some fun perfume adventures! 😀

      I have you on my list at #50! 🙂

    • Thank you, dear Lavanya. It helps to have a sleeping disorder and to be an incredibly fast typist. LOL! 🙂 I look forward to getting to know you better in the new year. I have you on my list. Good luck. And happy holidays!

  8. I’m late with the congratulations (it’s been a busy weekend) so here I am now.
    Happy blog birthday!! 🙂 And many, many more to come!

    I really admire the work you did in the last year, it feels like you’ve been around for much longer than a yer.

  9. Oops, got here a little too late it seems, for your lovely & most generous giveaway – Oh well … 😦

    My ‘SO’, I believe, has already wished u a private ‘Happy Blogversary’ on our behalf. But I thought I’d quickly chip in with my very own wishes too. 🙂 – So thanx for a great year of fab reviews Kaf ! – (Keep ’em coming & I’m pretty sure we’ll keep on readin ’em !)

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