I don’t know about you, but when I drive to Wawa, I’m more than thrilled by the tantalizing aroma of fresh Italian hoagie. Remove the nozzle of the gasoline pump and refuel.

Admit it, you probably like that pungent gasoline stench too.A colorless and highly flammable liquid, benzene gives gasoline its recognizable odor, but it constitutes most 1 percent The amount of gasoline, according to the US Environmental Protection Agency. However, our sense of smell is so sensitive to hydrocarbons that most people can immediately detect their presence. 60 ppm air, according to the U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. (One millionth is approximately equal to one drop in 40 gallons).

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Scientists don’t fully understand our affinity for smells, but two prevailing theories: One has to do with our memory and the other has to do with the brain’s reward pathways.

If you’ve ever smelled a particular cologne and instantly thought of your father, or inhaled the scent of freshly laundered laundry and conjured up images of your old job at the laundromat, then you’re already on the first theory. Savvy. Proust phenomenon: A strong emotional response to a familiar smell. This is due to the structure of the brain.

Located in the front part of the brain, the olfactory bulb processes the sense of smell and sends data about what you smell to other parts of the brain for further processing. limbic system, controls basic emotions. The amygdala, which controls emotions such as fear and joy, and the hippocampus, which processes memory, are both structures of the limbic system and have numerous neural connections near the olfactory bulb.

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As a result, information about the smell of gasoline travels quickly from the olfactory bulb to the parts of the brain that control emotions and memory. Fun memories of riding dirt bikes with your siblings can be awakened in your subconscious by simply filling up your car’s gas tank and gazing out into space with a few sips of gas.

A second theory deals with the mesolimbic pathway, also known as the reward pathway. Smelling benzene and other hydrocarbons suppresses the nervous system and provides temporary euphoria (yes, it’s like blowing paint off, I wouldn’t recommend trying it). When that happens, your mesolimbic pathway releases the neurotransmitter dopamine, making you feel happier and everything you smell is very, very very Good stuff.

That said, if you enjoy the smell of gasoline at your pump on a hot summer’s day, you’re definitely not a weirdo. Please keep

Take a deep breath and smell the gasoline.but maybe just 1 A little fluffy.

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