They called her “The Hitchcock Blonde”.
A single student had started it.
A shy first year, all subtle grey eyes and manicured stubble and bordering on being a sophisticate, he saw past her steely manner into what he perceived as something vulnerable within.
He noticed her arriving early each day, as he did, when the university still smelt of the orange and lemon St Clements’ Furniture Polish they used to clean the wooden floors.
On his way to swimming practice he observed her walking through the gates and pausing once within the place of learning to collect herself and her thoughts.
At this time of day she was at her most slender and stem like: encased in a green pillar coat that held the leafy loose clothes she favoured for teaching tucked in out of sight.
That moss-coloured coat cost more that a tutor could afford, even his young untrained eyes could tell that.
With a corrolla of blonde hair above her fragile face in these moments she resembled a wild flower, or so it seemed to him.
By the time swim team was through and he had reached the seminar room class had invariably started.
She stood at the chalk face whispering explanations through the dust of her scribbled seemingly endless equations. White powder mixed with the iris perfume he liked to imagine came straight from her skin so buttery was its complexion.
Now and then she turned to face her ambivalent audience. She fixed them with the studied empty stare that had inspired her new name.
Whilst the others blushed with embarrassment and returned to their books, he held her gaze.
Stared right back and imagined running through grassy fields on forest edges with her. Of exchanging student cigarettes and contraband kisses and smelling the sweetness that he knew her scent up close must be.
Was it wrong, so wrong that he followed her each afternoon as she crossed college green to the museum?
Was it really out of line for him to stand out of sight as she stood before Assyrian kings hunting tamed lions?
He longed to catch her as those noble beasts before them were caught in stone but sensed among classical statues and ancient sarcophogi that he never could or should.
At first Prada Infusion d’Iris gives the impression of being something of a blank canvas of a scent.
It belongs to a fraternity of fragrances that came about as the price of precious iris essence fell dramatically a few years ago.
But where others exploited the market to make only moderately pleasant perfumes, Prada has created something truly special out of an apparently slight, near almost nothingness.
It is the fragrance equivalent of a film score composed only of artificial bridsong.
Here the house style of ingenuous ambiguity bordering on vacuous perfection is turned from sin into salvation.
This fragrance follows a simple line unswervingly from citrus start through first chalk then buttered iris to a smoked vetiver finish that is vertiginous in its insubstantial depths.
This is a scented Kim Novak-like vessel which invites James Stewarts everywhere to put their fantasies into it.
Fresh? Clean? Floral? Powdered? Buttered? Steely? Smoky? Wooded?
The choice ultimately is yours.
This is your Hitchcock Blond to do with as you will.
And as infatuation crosses all gender lines to the wrong side of the tracks, I see no reason why a certain kind of confidently, assertively unsure-of-himself sort of man shouldn’t wear this.
The Perfumed Dandy.