I remember in the late 90′s someone turned me onto Penhaligon’s and I instantly became intrigued by their history. Anyone that’s been in existence this long must be doing something right. As an impulse shopper, I ran to Saks Fifth Avenue to experience their magic. Of all the scents I smelt, LP No 9 stood out the most. It was warm and very masculine in a traditional sense. It seemed like something a banker would wear. I purchased it and after wearing it for a bit, didn’t like it anymore. Why, my taste started to change. I longed for something new. So I offered it to my brother because I could see he took a liking to it.
On Thursday May 21st, New York City Policeman shattered my world when they told me my beloved brother, Lamont R. Bishop, collapsed and passed away on his way home from the gym. My body went cold and I felt alone. Nothing would ever be the same.
After I returned home from the hospital with my family, I walked into his room as I began grappling with my new reality and there it was on his dresser staring at me. I’ve gone in there hundreds of times to ask him to cut my hair, for advice, to watch Sportscenter, help him pick out a shirt and tie combo, to compare who had a better Windsor knot, to give him a hug and never paid much attention to it. But on this particular day, the first fragrance I ever gave my brother, sorely stood out. After holding it in my hand and remembering the moment I gave it to him, I took it back into my possession. I then took a quick shower because there was much to do and proceeded to spray a bit on myself. The next day I sprayed a bit more on myself and did so every day for the next week. So many things have been running through my head but in a weird way LP No 9 has bought me a bit of comfort and it will forever be a part of my scent wardrobe.
Ya see, LP No 9 will forever remind me of my brother. It is indeed masculine and very traditional. But now it also represents everything that made my brother loved by so many, endearing, smooth, sweet, familiar, and strong. LP No 9 just feels right and that’s how you felt when in the presence of Lamont.
I feel cheated by life because Lamont was a mere 35 years old when he passed. He was on his way to receiving his PH.D in psychology, is survived by his 1 year old son named Aidan A Bishop, was making plans to marry his fiancee Aquila Lovell and had an entire life ahead of him. But most of all, he always had a moment to listen because he cared. He embodied all of the good qualities we’ve come to understand a man is to stand for. He loved his family and inspired his friends and colleagues to strive for greatness.
As I sit outside his room writing this post, I’m reminded by its stillness that my beloved brother is gone. Its surreal because he was only 35. It’s surreal because we spoke the night before and he told me he was proud of me. It’s surreal because we were supposed to grow old together. It’s surreal because my brother, my only brother is no longer here. But the memories are deep, the love is deeper and I can thank God we had the best relationship one can ask for. Best of all, I can spray a bit of LP No 9 on myself and remember L, aspire to be the man he was and look forward to hanging with him again one day. In the interim, I pray for strength and understanding and hope you will pray for me as well.