20080618-stamps.jpg

Clockwise from top left: India's jasmine-scented stamp; Brazil's coffee-scented stamp; China's sweet-and-sour-pork-scented stamp; Switzerland's chocolate stamp.

Maybe you are mailing a love letter. Or paying bills. Either way, you'll need a stamp.

If you are writing to proclaim your love for me, consider using a coffee-scented stamp from Brazil or a rose-scented stamp from the tiny nation of Bhutan, who released the world's first scented stamps in 1973. These smelly postage stamps and others appear in The Presurfer's short list of the world's smelliest postage stamps.

Like many endeavors, the olfactory stamp was conceived in a ploy to make money—and it worked. Nations rake in the most postage profits from stamp collectors who never put their stamps to work. This means a nearly 100 percent profit for the postal service.

I don't collect stamps, but if I did I would scout stamps from India with the essence of jasmine. I would also yearn for Brazil's burnt-wood-scented stamps, which were part of Brazil's forest fire prevention efforts in 1999.

But please, mail me a letter. What good does a hoarded stamp do you? And since the way to my heart is through my stomach, I suggest you buy a book of chocolate stamps from Switzerland, which come wrapped in foil, much like a chocolate bar. (Sorry to report, "It only smells like chocolate; it tastes like plain old stamp glue.") Or better yet, stick a stamp with the aroma of sweet and sour pork on your envelope. China issued the stamp in 2007, to celebrate the Year of the Pig. If you, dear soulmate, profess your love in a package wafting fried pork, I'm all yours.

Comments

Comments can take up to a minute to appear - please be patient!

Previewing your comment: