The 33rd Annual Odor-Eaters Rotten Sneaker Contest is stinking up Montpelier, Vermont, on March 18, and eight kids will compete to see whose tennis shoes have the worst stench to win $2,500 and a trip to New York.
But for first-time judge Rachel Herz an expert in the psychology of smell and author of The Scent of Desire (Harper Collins) sniffing smelly sneakers is not something shes exactly running to try out.
She says, Im open to all scents, but Im trying not to think about it. Ive heard theyre really bad, like a rotten, cheesy mixture of smells.
Though Herz says her sneakers have never gotten anywhere near that category of smell, she thinks her nose will know the winner when it gets there.
Herz says, [Contestants] wear their sneakers a lot while doing sweaty things or walking through places like mud, muck, or barnyards. Im interested to find what really is the worst.
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