Chance Eau de Toilette (Chanel)

It's your chance... TAKE IT! blares the promo copy. A decidedly young scent for those who dare to dream. As for myself -- decidedly not young, and rather intolerant of bullshit -- I dare to dream of fragrances that actually fulfill the challenges they issue to me. If a perfume is going to hand me a bunch of sass, it had better back it up and not go all wobbly in the knees when it's time to stand up straight.

"Extreme freshness", I hear, is the name of Chance's game. True, its opening is the oddest combination of cucumber (Calone, is that you?) and patchouli. I'm not saying that cucumber and patchouli can't mix; it's that I wish they wouldn't. After awhile, they're joined by three notes of normally very distinct personality -- pineapple, pink pepper, and hyacinth -- which here have been watered down just shy of the line labeled "beyond recognition". The die-down (not even a drydown!) is a flat, woody-musky cardboard, unworthy of the house that gave it birth.

No worries. As soon as this accord gave up its last gasp, I replaced it with some Kenzo Parfum d'Été and had (to borrow a phrase from Stella Gibbons) "a nice time instead of a nasty one".

Scent Elements: Pink pepper, lemon, pineapple, hyacinth, jasmine, iris, patchouli, vetiver, amber, white musk