I like the smell of parking garages. As far back as I can remember, I have liked the smell of them. Specifically, I am talking about garages under buildings. I think my enjoyment of such smells started at my grandparents’ place, which was in an apartment building.
I imagine my garage sniffing is akin to someone who likes wine. Now, I don’t go around town looking for garages to sniff. I don’t peek my face inside garage doors, swirl my hand in front of my face, and huff the air to fully enjoy the nose of the garage. I don’t fill my cheeks with the air and swish from side to side, calmly declaring, “Indeed, this garage has a harmonious palate.” Fuck that. Fuck the snobbery. The garage thing is just something I’ve noticed over the years. It’s a mixture of the smells of exhaust and concrete. It’s a musty smell. Maybe a dash of gasoline thrown in the mix. Old rubber probably plays a role in all of it, too.
Further to the parking garage smell, I also notice that some home garages feature wonderful smells. Some of these offer a rare delicacy. I can recall from my childhood our neighbour’s garage, which housed a 1969 Oldsmobile Cutlass convertible. That was a full-bodied smelling garage, holy fuck. The air seemed thick with old car smell. It was a glorious mixture of old V8 and a hint of unused fuel. I imagine the convertible top had an effect on the atmosphere, too. Similarly, my own garage is progressing into a finely aged cellar, rapidly so because of the tired Camaro I have aging inside. The tired V8 and mixture of exhaust smells combine with the concrete floor to make a truly exquisite experience. It’s a treat when I go to the garage for a pair of pliers or a tape measure and catch a whiff. Some more oil spills, interior left in the sun, an exhaust leak, and a hint of saw dust from the odd woodworking project should produce something truly spectacular within the next couple years.
Below: Slowly aging car with a layer of dust and mystery fluid leaking on the concrete is creating the perfect scent for my garage. Just like fine wine. Notice on the left behind the car are a couple sheets of plywood, which add to the overall flavour of the room.
Below: This is a picture of a local parking garage that I am familiar with. The scents inside this beauty excite the senses. The variety of vehicles within contribute to the depth of smell.