Distinctive smell of sexually-aroused men's breath?
March 7, 2011 4:16 PM   Subscribe

I recently went out on a date with a woman I'm interested in. (I'm an early-30s male.) It's very early in the proceedings, so we're still getting used to each other. Anyway, during this date, she informed me that sexually-aroused men have a particular odor in their breath, and that I'd had it all evening. Later on, she told me that she actually didn't care for the odor at all, which was news to me. This is the first I've heard of this phenomenon, so I'd like to learn more about it.

I admit: I do enjoy spicy food, meat, garlic, and onions. (My dinner before this did involve marinara sauce, which I'll admit was a no-no, but it was mostly tomatoes and oregano instead of garlic and onions, and it was a few hours before. Also, I brushed my teeth and chewed some sugarless gum ahead of time to minimize any fallout from that.) But be advised: I'm more interested in arousal halitosis than anything else--I can change what I eat, and I can change my conscious response to the arousal, but as far as getting sexually aroused in the first place, nothing conscious is running the show.

So my questions for the androphiles out there (those sexually attracted to men) and those who love them:
  • Have you noticed this sort of smell in sexually-aroused men's breath before?
  • What was it like? Did it smell like they'd eaten any particular kind of food? Was it musky, sour, sharp, oily, foul, pungent, sweet, acrid, sharp, or anything like that? I'd link to a bunch of tasting guides and the like but I expect you can find them.
  • Was it objectionable? More specifically, was it universally objectionable or only objectionable in certain contexts? If the latter, which?
  • What is the best way to manage this among people who find it objectionable? Is there a particular gum, mouthwash, toothpaste, herb, diet, or practice you've found that works? If so, what are your recommendations?
  • Did you find it was more or less pronounced in people with any medical condition? If so, what, how, and why?
  • Have you found that people who could notice or who objected to men's breath when they had no cause for halitosis except for sexual arousal were just chemically incompatible? (I use "chemically" in this sense to refer to literal chemistry, not to any kind of emotional issue--an extreme example is someone I met at a party who said that when he and his SO stopped using protection, he thought he'd gotten some kind of VD, but his doctor said that it was an allergic reaction.)
  • Similarly, might this be some sort of MHC thing?
  • Finally, is there any other advice that comes to mind?
Thanks very much for your help.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (75 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Just one datapoint from one androphile: I have never noticed this before with any man I've ever dated or slept with.
posted by Kurichina at 4:19 PM on March 7, 2011 [3 favorites]

i think she is messing with your mind.
posted by tel3path at 4:19 PM on March 7, 2011 [47 favorites]

...during this date, she informed me that sexually-aroused men have a particular odor in their breath, and that I'd had it all evening. Later on, she told me that she actually didn't care for the odor at all...

She's telling you that she's not into you, but she's doing it in the weirdest, most convoluted way possible.
posted by 2bucksplus at 4:19 PM on March 7, 2011 [121 favorites]

I'm pretty sure she was saying "I'm not interested in sleeping with you this evening."

Go on a second date, use Listerine.
posted by JimmyJames at 4:19 PM on March 7, 2011

I would say, run in the opposite direction. This woman is nuts.
posted by jayder at 4:21 PM on March 7, 2011 [130 favorites]

Don't on a second date; use of Listerine is up to you.
posted by you're a kitty! at 4:24 PM on March 7, 2011 [6 favorites]

She sounds crazy.
posted by Slinga at 4:25 PM on March 7, 2011 [8 favorites]

This is not a real thing.
posted by justkevin at 4:25 PM on March 7, 2011 [12 favorites]

Wow. A proper response would've been something along the lines of, "Yeah, well, I've been checking out the girl sitting behind you the entire time, and frankly I can't help it."

Stay far away from this woman.
posted by TrialByMedia at 4:28 PM on March 7, 2011 [28 favorites]

Utter nonsense. Run from this woman. Run fast.
posted by uans at 4:29 PM on March 7, 2011 [4 favorites]

She doesn't want to sleep with you.
posted by mleigh at 4:30 PM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

Nonsense, and rude, to boot!
posted by thinkpiece at 4:32 PM on March 7, 2011 [10 favorites]

nthing 1. this is not a real thing and 2. she's bonkers.

you'd do well to make haste in the other direction.
posted by hollisimo at 4:33 PM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

I'm sad for you OP. This is crap. At least now you know.
posted by sweetkid at 4:34 PM on March 7, 2011

Have you noticed this sort of smell in sexually-aroused men's breath before?

Finally, is there any other advice that comes to mind?

Yeah. That she's mentally ill.

Or was kidding around but you didn't get it (I would think she would eventually say, 'just kidding' if that was the case, though)

Or she was just effing around with you and being mean (which, I dunno, seems kind of odd).

Or... well, there are people who believe all kinds of stuff, so maybe she wasn't lying and really believes in this (without being mentally ill). In that case, she didn't have to be an asshole and tell you she's not "fond of the odor".
posted by KogeLiz at 4:38 PM on March 7, 2011 [6 favorites]

oh. my reply to the first question was a simple "no."
posted by KogeLiz at 4:38 PM on March 7, 2011

This woman told you that she could tell you were horny all night and she didn't like the way you smell. I'd tell you to cut your losses except divesting yourself of this one is no loss.
posted by nanojath at 4:40 PM on March 7, 2011 [5 favorites]

Pheromones are significant in sexual selection among many animal species, even humans. But she's just teasing you.
posted by ovvl at 4:44 PM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

Another vote for "I've never heard of this before in my life."
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 4:45 PM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

This is so far from being real, I've never even gotten spam about it. Back out of the room slowly, no sudden moves.
posted by Capt. Renault at 4:48 PM on March 7, 2011 [36 favorites]

Never heard of this. And even if it were somehow true, or she was just genuinely misinformed and not nutty, she was still very rude to say that to you.
posted by JanetLand at 4:48 PM on March 7, 2011 [4 favorites]

I've never heard of this, nor have I ever noticed it myself, and I have a super sensitive nose. Even if what she said WERE true (and it's not), would you want to end up regularly sleeping with someone who always thought your breath reeked during sexytime?
posted by katillathehun at 4:48 PM on March 7, 2011 [2 favorites]

Er, not in my experience. And let's just say there IS such a thing - who'd bring it up on a date, only to say it's repellent?
posted by honey-barbara at 4:50 PM on March 7, 2011 [6 favorites]

As a fervent day-to-day surrealist and word-player, I'd submit that she may someone with a really quirky kind of humor, and/or a test-for-teasability compulsion. These people do exist. It would interest me no end (in your place) to find out more about what made her claim this silliness, but one thing is sure: the answer isn't along the lines of your little questionnaire here. At all. (She'd laugh her head off, I bet).

Maybe she's also curious what strategy you'll choose to change your breath (Oooh. Peppermint. That is soo seventies...)
posted by Namlit at 4:50 PM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

add "be". Gettin' late.
posted by Namlit at 4:51 PM on March 7, 2011

Maybe she was trying to tell you that you have bad breath in a sort of indirect way by placing the blame on arousal breath and not on you.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 4:53 PM on March 7, 2011 [3 favorites]

"Have you found that people who could notice or who objected to men's breath when they had no cause for halitosis except for sexual arousal were just chemically incompatible?"

OMIGOD. This. Totally.

That said, I think she's nutzy about the smell coming from "sexual arousal" specifically. I think she has some sort of confirmation bias + neurosis.

Yes I've noticed that I dislike the breath or body odor of certain men who have liked me. Yes in those cases we've turned out not to be compatible. It's also rare rare rare that I ever object to my (super beloved!) husband's breath or body odor and this was a BIG sign for me that we were very compatible.

Thing is, she sounds crazy. Even when I've noticed an objectionable odor in another I never told them about it! Instinctively I knew how to interpret what I was smelling and keep it to myself. Geesh.

Why are you interested in seeing this person again? Why would she be interested in seeing you again after throwing that drama card on the table??

posted by jbenben at 4:53 PM on March 7, 2011 [8 favorites]

"Ironically, sexually-attractive women have a particular look about them, and you've been missing it all evening."

OK, I suppose it's too late for that... esprit d'escalier...

That sound of her put-down? It's a warning shot.
posted by IAmBroom at 4:55 PM on March 7, 2011 [4 favorites]

Forget bad breath. The most obvious sign of a "sexually aroused" man is an erection, right? So unless you had one during your date, shouldn't it be pretty obvious that lady was bullshitting you?

Having said that, the tone of your question indicates to me that you took her observation seriously and literally. Is it possible that early in your date, she sensed your gullibility and literal-mindedness and decided to tease you with this claim of sexual-arousal halitosis?
posted by hhc5 at 4:59 PM on March 7, 2011 [2 favorites]

To add to my answer, if she meant it, she's nuts. If she's teasing you and never cleared it up, she's rude. If she was testing you to see what you'd do/say, she's manipulative. If by some odd chance, she's right, then she's not attracted to you AND she's rude.

Nice people just don't do that.
posted by katillathehun at 4:59 PM on March 7, 2011 [15 favorites]

Nthing the conclusion that this woman is crazy. Sorry you took her seriously.
posted by rhartong at 5:08 PM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

Uh....(slowly raises hand) I know the smell she is talking about.

With my husband, at least, I can detect it. Can't describe it, but I can definitely detect it.

In my case I'm not put off by it.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 5:10 PM on March 7, 2011 [3 favorites]

It's true that I often sense a palpable "vibe" from men who are attracted to me. If I were a more olfactory person I might read that vibe as a scent, rather than as a look in his eye, or something in the tone of his voice, as I normally do. She may also be experiencing synesthesia, where she perceives the attraction (subconsciously?) and attributes a scent to it.
posted by milk white peacock at 5:17 PM on March 7, 2011 [6 favorites]

My first thought would be that this lady is nuts. I'm a female and have no idea what she's talking about. There is this, but it is not at all what she was talking about.

Don't let this woman make you overanalyze yourself. I woud absolutely not go out with her again, though. She can have her weird theories, but to actually say it to you on a first date just shows how rude she is.
posted by elpea at 5:22 PM on March 7, 2011

Assuming that you're in the US or the UK, where people tend to keep a fair amount of physical distance from each other:

If someone has been hanging out so close-in to her personal space that she can smell their breath, it's not unlikely that they are aroused. But the actual smell? Given that those who aren't aroused are more likely to be at a distance, how would she have much of a basis for comparison?

All in all, it just sounds like she was laying a lame little trip on you.
posted by dacoit at 5:25 PM on March 7, 2011

>>Anyway, during this date, she informed me that sexually-aroused men have a particular odor in their breath, and that I'd had it all evening. Later on, she told me that she actually didn't care for the odor at all, which was news to me.

"I can tell you're aroused and I don't like it" could easily be her telling you she's not interested. She also could be joking or flirting or messing with you.
posted by J. Wilson at 5:29 PM on March 7, 2011

Uh, yeah, I can totally smell arousal on someone's breath (male or female), everyone smells different, it's not unpleasant. But it doesn't appear until someone is really aroused, like heavy-petting aroused.

And regardless, she sounds like a terrible date.
posted by desuetude at 5:31 PM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

Umm... I'm with Alia.

There is a distinctive scent that at least I have detected on 4 out of 5 confirmed aroused guys (had a cold on the fifth) I have been around, seems to come more from the chest and pits than the mouth though. Women definitely have something, totally different, on their breath though.

That said, my money is on: shes not that into you and is trying passive aggressively turn you away while simultaneously manipulating you into telling her that you find her attractive because she wouldn't believe it if she were told honestly. RUN
posted by Blasdelb at 5:35 PM on March 7, 2011 [2 favorites]

I got into an argument with an ex of mine because he honest-to-god believes that Bigfoot is real.

Give me this chick's number and I'll set the two of them up. They both seem to believe in (and, even worse, admit out loud about) fantastic things.
posted by phunniemee at 5:40 PM on March 7, 2011 [6 favorites]

I never noticed this at all. And I have been around sexually aroused males.
posted by wandering_not_lost at 6:11 PM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

I have unconsciously responded to men's pheromones enough to feel the rush before I even see them. And I've never experienced the odor thing she is talking about, either from men I found attractive or repugnant.
posted by effluvia at 6:23 PM on March 7, 2011

I believe hubris is the term for excessive and misplaced confidence in one's understanding of the world. Sounds to me like you have found an exemplar.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 6:25 PM on March 7, 2011 [8 favorites]

It sounds like a manipulative tactic to put you on the defensive, keep you off balance. Sort of an "I know you're guilty!" kind of thing to see if you're the kind of person who would take it to heart and try to "do better next time"; that is, to try harder to please her. And it looks like you did, unfortunately.

I don't know that she's nuts. My first guess is that she's a manipulative bitch. And even if she isn't manipulative, she sure is bitchy to say such a thing. Please, you deserve better than these sorts of weird mind games. Find yourself somebody who would never dream of telling you that you smell bad on a first date.
posted by WorkingMyWayHome at 6:30 PM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

If a man said this to a woman on a date, most people would think it's creepy and that she should run in the opposite direction. I see no difference when the genders are reversed.
posted by ob at 6:49 PM on March 7, 2011 [6 favorites]

Echoing everyone else that I've never heard of this. And, if there had been a single study done of only a dozen people, it would've been splashed all over the papers.

So delete her from your phone, because she is a mean, mean girl. (I'm not saying woman because she sounds too immature for that.)
posted by sfkiddo at 7:03 PM on March 7, 2011

Frankly I smell "online dating." I've met several women who do these funny little conversational gambits that seem to be geared toward short-circuiting some common response they get personally. Was she conventionally attractive? One thing that I've realized over the years is that it is indeed possible for a woman to be creepy, and these kinds of conversations are right up that alley, accusing you of being hot to trot. On preview, I'm glad to see WorkingMyWayHome on the same angle.
posted by rhizome at 7:11 PM on March 7, 2011

Dude, she's crazy. Move on.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 7:19 PM on March 7, 2011

Was this in Australia or another country where 'taking the piss' is common?
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 7:21 PM on March 7, 2011

Whoa whoa whoa, I wouldn't bust out the cuckoo clocks on her yet. People sometimes believe the occasional outlandish thing without being stupid or crazy. However, she doesn't sound like good dating material either. Regardless of her motive, that's a tacky thing to say on a first date.

If the genders were reversed in this question, this would be a dead giveaway pickup-artist-style "neg." (And, judging by your question, you've bought it.)
posted by Metroid Baby at 7:31 PM on March 7, 2011 [9 favorites]

I'm not sure if she's crazy or kidding, but she's definitely irritating either way.
posted by pineappleheart at 7:32 PM on March 7, 2011

Uhhh... I'm an early 30s female, but I've never noticed sexually aroused men to have a shared odor on their breath, and if someone were to say to me what your date said to you, I'd be like, 'lady, you wish,' and I'd be gone! What a weird comment for her to make.. twice (along with the back-handed comment about not liking the odor). Maybe she's trying to tell you that she's gay?
posted by Mael Oui at 7:36 PM on March 7, 2011

I have no doubt that SOME people can detect a different odor in SOME people during sexual arousal. But I also think those "some"s are a really really really really tiny number of people. I absolutely DO NOT believe that she can detect it in ALL men (or most men, or even more than like 2 men) because there is no way that all men smell the same when sexually aroused.

As a data point one of my exes was convinced ABSOLUTELY that he could tell if I was aroused just by smelling my breath. He was wrong about 98% of the time. And I'm willing to bet the other 2% was just just luck. So yeah, I call bullshit.
posted by magnetsphere at 8:04 PM on March 7, 2011

i think i actually have heard of something like this. i tried to find it before posting, but for the life of me i couldn't. it was some article about how people with compatible pheromones have a more appealing breath smell to each other. But I don't think that smell IS anything in particular, it's just whatever it is but somehow more appealing for whatever biological reason.

That said, and for all my love for/ faith in biology and pheromones . . . I would never SAY such a thing to someone! (Because it would sound crazy.) She does sound like a nutter, i'm not disagreeing that you should run the other way. but it may have started from a kernel of something possibly true.
posted by GastrocNemesis at 8:07 PM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

oops, i'm stupid, upon re-reading i see the OP linked to the articles I was describing . . . the MHC thing. anyway my point was true or not, she sounds like a bitch.
posted by GastrocNemesis at 8:11 PM on March 7, 2011

Some people do have different smells when something is going on with their body. For instance, I have a family member who used to smell sickly-sweet to me, before being diagnosed with diabetes. After treatment, the smell mostly went away, except for rare occasions.

I think it might be some sort of confirmation bias in this case. She might associate some odor you had with previous experiences. Did you drink?

At any rate, I think it's possible to smell if someone is aroused, but only if you were in very close contact, like kissy-face close. I think that her telling you that she didn't like the way you smelled is a big red flag.
posted by annsunny at 8:26 PM on March 7, 2011

I suppose it's possible (although I've certainly never noticed it), but even if so, what a bizarre thing to say! The suggestions that she a) has a really weird sense of humor b) was negging or c) was trying, awkwardly and roundaboutly, to tell you that you had bad breath all seem possible. Unless a) really appeals to you, I would say one date was enough.
posted by naoko at 8:56 PM on March 7, 2011

Could it have happened this way?

She is fishing for your interest level, makes comment that she can smell you are aroused. She hopes you will admit you are aroused, validating that you are interested in her. You misunderstand her intent, worry she thinks you are pervy, and deny. She takes your denial as a denial of interest in her, makes statement about not liking the smell as a way to save face.

Otherwise...no idea.
posted by psycheslamp at 9:17 PM on March 7, 2011 [8 favorites]

This woman is working on some sort of social research paper. She is using you as another data point for whatever she is trying to find out. That is either will this guy take this totally bs story that is mean to boot and still ask me out on another date or would this guy believe me if I tell him gullible was taken out of the dictionary.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 9:36 PM on March 7, 2011

Run away!
posted by parmanparman at 10:27 PM on March 7, 2011

Yeah, I've noticed that scent change in my ex, but not in earlier girlfriends. And it sure wasn't from 'arousal.' More like post-coital, as in "hey, your breath is totally different now." Not strong though. Not noticeable from across a table in a restaurant. Sweet-musky-flowery

There are variations in odor perception between human adult males and females. Le Magnen and Doty found that this is most evident in the case of women's acute ability to smell musk3, which are steroids, large cycloketone or lactones, often with side chains which are most likely involved with their biological specificty of action. All of these compounds are very similar to the male sex hormone testosterone (see appendix for structures). Whereas women are very sensitive (1 part in 1,000,000,000) to the musky odors of civetone (from the anal glands of the civet cat and used in many perfumes), exaltolide (a synthetic musk), and boar taint substance (a sexual attractant produced in the preputial glands of the boar), men are relatively insensitive (1 part in 1,000,000) to these substances. Moreover, women's sensitivity to these substances varies as a function of where they are in their menstrual cycle: during menstruation, women are no more sensitive to musks than men, but about ten days after menstruation (ovulation -- a woman's peak fertility period), women reach their maximum sensitivity. In addition, women on the pill, women who have had ovarectomies, pregnant women, and post-menopausal women are relatively insensitive to these substances. Le Magnen deduced from these results that sensitivity to musk in women is critically dependant on the levels of estrogen in the blood: during ovulation, serum estrogen is at a peak, whereas serum levels of estrogen are low during menstruation, pregnancy, in post-menopausal women, women who have had ovarectomies, and birth-control pill users. Further, it is the action of progesterone which causes nasal congestion during menstruation and pregnancy4, and might be responsible for the reduced sensitivity at these times.

Why is this relevant? Men secrete musky odorants in abundance. The -3-ol precursor of boar taint substance is found in male urine, and substances similar to testosterone, such as androstenone, are secreted in the smegma and from the apocrine glands of the underarms5 and pubic area of males. As is usually the case, bacterial action may be necessary for the release of the odorants. The fact that men's bodies secrete these substances and that women are maximally sensitive to them when they are most fertile indicates that there may be a olfactory-sexual role for these substances in human sexuality.

Indeed, a study performed by J. Richard Udry at the University of North Carolina attempted to delineate the relationship between coitus, orgasm and position in the menstrual cycle. He found that women do indeed engage in sexual intercourse about six times more frequently at about the time of ovulation, when women's sensitivity to the male musk odor is highest. In addition, the women are much more likely to have an orgasm at these times. Further, the women Udry studied women were several times less likely to have sexual intercourse or have an orgasm during and two to three days after menstruation, which is when women's sensitivity to the musky smell of men is lowest. Coupled with women's odor sensitivity, these results could indicate a possible pheromonal trigger for sexual behaviour.
posted by billb at 11:53 PM on March 7, 2011

Imagine for a moment that this date of your had these enormous warning flags, fluorescent, I mean you could land an airplane with these flags. However, she just noticed as she was trotting off to your date that -- damn, these flags just won't fit in her purse. How could should she possibly get the exact same effect as MASSIVE WARNING FLAGS DANGER DANGER ABORT ABORT?

This is how.
posted by effugas at 1:05 AM on March 8, 2011 [5 favorites]

Crazy, deluded, determinedly misinformed, mean, or just manipulative, in my opinion. None of which are on the list of desirable character traits for me.
posted by lemniskate at 5:20 AM on March 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

I have never, ever heard of this; it sounds like a crock, and frankly I'd be annoyed if a woman tried a line like that on me. In fact I'd probably look her dead in the eye and say "Your theory is mistaken, because I can assure you I have never been less sexually aroused than I am right now."

Mind you, I can be a bit of a dick about this sort of thing. :-)
posted by Decani at 7:10 AM on March 8, 2011 [3 favorites]

The only shared odor I've smelled on the breath of sexually-aroused men is alcohol! Ha.

I do think that individuals may give off certain odors as they get aroused, but I think it varies from individual to individual, and if so the only way she could tell yours would be if you guys had been doing it for a while now.

Frankly, I think it was a cheap crappy way of her telling you that she *knew* how into her you were so she could shoot you down. I've had guys do it to me and it's rude. It's absolutely effective in getting me NOT interested in them, and I think you should let her know it worked by never asking her out again!
posted by motsque at 7:41 AM on March 8, 2011 [4 favorites]

She sounds delusional and hostile. Avoid.
posted by w0mbat at 8:21 AM on March 8, 2011 [2 favorites]

My son has synesthesia and that can give certain feelings tastes & smells. Angry might taste bitter, for example.

Perhaps what she smells is her own arousal but she's ignorantly attributing the origin of the smell to whomever she's attracted to.

It doesn't mean she's crazy (rude and/or socially awkward, yes). If you like her, might be worth investigating.
posted by agentwills at 8:52 AM on March 8, 2011

Sounds way too forward. What if the first time you met her, she made a remark about how she thought you had an erection, but wasn't interested in doing anything about it?

Here's how I like to imagine it went down:

She: I noticed that you have a particular odor in your breath tonight.
You: You...I...what?
She: That's right--and I can tell by your mouth-odor that you're aroused. Sexually, I mean. Because all men have this kind of smell in their breath that means they want to have sex...
You: ...
She: ...and you know what else? I really don't care for it. I think it's kind of gross.
You: (to waiter) Check!

arousal halitosis? what
posted by ostranenie at 9:33 AM on March 8, 2011 [5 favorites]

It took me into my twenties to realize that my magic power of detecting that a woman was into me based on her breath was actually my smelling.... garlic. Yes, there is a strong correlation between going out and eating garlic in one's meal and making out later, it seems. Who knew?

In related news, I like it when my wife has a bit of garlic breath.
posted by norm at 12:06 PM on March 8, 2011 [2 favorites]

she informed me that sexually-aroused men have a particular odor in their breath

This is true. It's called "Scotch."
posted by kirkaracha at 1:20 PM on March 8, 2011 [3 favorites]

Certainly not the creepiest/insulting thing I've been told on a date, but definitely way, way into deal-breaker territory. I'm moderately more puzzled that your WTF-meter didn't peg immediately.
posted by kjs3 at 2:28 PM on March 8, 2011

This is one of those cases where it would be awesome if the subject of our worries would somehow show up in the thread and provide an explanation so we can get some sleep (or the OP could oblige with a follow up, how did it all go, but that would be comparatively lame, actually).

As we have it now, she didn't only mess with the OP's brains, but with a bunch of ours as well. A skillfully played game of power, in other words. You, we, don't want to be played like that ever again. After turning this around in my mind for a day, I'd join the "run, don't even ask" crowd.
posted by Namlit at 3:24 PM on March 8, 2011

Here's a suggestion to the OP, following upon namlit's suggestion:

Why don't you email her, saying something like: "Hey, I was really intrigued by what you said about the odor of my breath the other night, and I bounced it off a bunch of folks on this website, Metafilter, that I frequent, and they thought you were nuts! Were you serious or just messing with my mind?"
posted by jayder at 3:35 PM on March 8, 2011 [2 favorites]

(And then come tell us what she said.)
posted by jayder at 4:30 PM on March 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

Helen Keller:
"Masculine exhalations are, as a rule, stronger, more vivid,more widely differentiated than those of women. In the odor of young men there is something elemental, as of fire, storm, and salt sea. It pulsates with buoyancy and desire. It suggests all the things strong and beautiful and joyous and gives me a sense of physical happiness."
posted by AceRock at 8:24 AM on March 9, 2011 [1 favorite]

"It is arousal related, but I'm afraid to inform you that the smell on my breath is womanly musk from my prior date this evening."
posted by benzenedream at 6:30 PM on March 10, 2011 [4 favorites]

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