It’s been a while since our first tentative sniff at the case of famously stinky teen heartthrob Robert Pattinson. Now he’s back in the news with remarks to the Portuguese magazine Activa, translated here, regarding the olfactory nature of his attraction to women:
“It doesn’t necessarily have to be perfume. I like the smell of people. It is really strange and I’m sure it has to do with pheromones. We like people because subconsciously we like the way they smell. I always find this very interesting to observe.”OK, that’s a pretty conventional view. But what struck us was this reference to an article in Vogue that we seem to have missed.
In 2012 [Pattinson’s girlfriend at the time] Kristen [Stewart] told Vogue magazine: “I’m so in love with my boyfriend [Robert Pattinson] I love the way he smells. And him me.
“Like, he loves to lick under my armpits. I don’t get this obsession with washing the smell off. That smell of someone you love – don’t you think that’s the whole point?”Pit sniffers of the world, unite!
When it comes to underarm odor, RB apparently works both sides of the street. Not that there is anything wrong with that. Unless you’re one of those prudes on a film crew who find him a little overripe. Or you’re some inhibited loser who doesn’t like having your unwashed armpits licked by a guy nominated for Best Actor in a Canadian Film by the Vancouver Film Critics Circle. Really, loosen up. Get a life.
Exit question: Is there a formal term for people who are pathologically attracted to armpit smell?
Bonus question: If not, what should we call them?
UPDATE October 18, 2013
FN Commenter Lindaloo offers “pitophilia.” Not bad: it is easily understood. Some googling around reveals “maschalagnia” as the appropriately arcane and unpronounceable designation for armpit fetish. But maschalagnia strikes me as one of those formalisms that shows up frequently in tedious academic tracts but is rarely used by clinicians or researchers. For example, it is mentioned in about eight volumes on Google Books (including such time-wasters as There’s a Word for It and Lecher’s Lexicon). Meanwhile on PubMed, the go-to source for working scientists, it doesn’t produce a single hit. QED