A House Built On Scented Candles

According to a Times Style slideshow I watched while sitting in my living room/dining room and also kitchen/den/shoebox and grave/walk up, lifestyle-product-maker Harry Slatkin and his wife recently had a party where "guests roamed through the couple's Upper East Side town house in a whirl of style and gaiety. Ears and wrists sparkled with carat-heavy diamonds; sculptured lips nibbled on comfort food. See what they were wearing then." Roam is a 14th century verb meaning " to travel purposefully unhindered through a wide area" for instance, "cattle roaming in search of water." Bitter class resentment immediately bubbled from my gullet. I got up disgusted and confused, roamed the two steps to my cappuccino machine, and stewed while foaming some milk. Then I began to study Slatkin's life to see if I too couldn't figure out a way to get rich quick or die trying.

Harry Slatkin is a scent master and, can you believe, dabbles in writing for the New York Times. His company makes candles! CANDLES! So that's the trick, making candles and lotions? I could do that, simple.

But soon I discovered not just any candles would make me a rich man. They have to be spiritual and pretentious. According to his website , Slatkin's scents have "ultra hip packaging and unbelievably sophisticated and unique scents." His big seller? Kabbalah candles, launched in the fall and based on spiritual wisdom! Ooh! Smart! Spirity! They come with a red string! They are based on the 72 names of God! Madonna likes them! So do Demi and Ashton.

2008, watch out world. I'm developing Chicken Soup and Guilt votives, based on the famous Judaic remedy for colds and the specialty of Jewish mothers; the Breathe Line, which comes in unbelievably sophisticated variations like Rabbi Breath (flossy!); Zayde Breath; and "Rachel Brown," named after that girl who kissed you in the bathroom of Rodeph Shalom on Saturday that one time and smelled like French toast. I'm going to be a rich man and you, readers, will always be welcome to roam about my house, looking for water.