Becoming inscentsed at Orly – and another bad rap for duty free

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Martin Moodie
Martin Moodie is the Founder & Chairman of The Moodie Report.

One of the more unlikely headlines of the year is the one I discovered in the online edition of UK media The Sun this morning – Rival rappers brawl in Paris Orly airport duty free and beat each other with perfume bottles in front of terrified passengers.

Or this one from music website TMZ – PARIS AIRPORT FIGHT: BEEFING RAPPERS BRAWL… Duty-Free Shop Destroyed

The story relates the “jaw-dropping moment” that two of France’s most famous rappers “brawled like animals” in a Buy Paris Duty Free beauty store at Orly Airport in the French capital.

“Travellers passing through the airport were left stunned as the teams for both rappers battered each other with perfume bottles,” the breathless story continued. “Police at the airport rushed to the scene within minutes as the men continued punching each other.”

So who were these rappers (as it was a fist fight, presumably both were afterwards rapped on the knuckles by the police)? And why did they think GWP meant Givenchy with punch or that edp stood for exhibition of dangerous pugilism?

One was Elie Yaffa, better-known by his stage name, Booba. The other was Okou Armand Gnakouri (Kaaris). Both are renowned and hugely popular exponents of French rap, gangsta rap, hardcore rap, trap, and wrap claptrap (ok, I made that last one up).

Booba and Kaaris, both apparently free of duty that day, didn’t just have a minor altercation in the Groupe ADP/Lagardère Travel Retail-owned store. In fact the brawl became so intense that Orly’s Departure Lounge 10 in Hall 1 of the west terminal was shut down for an hour, with some flights delayed or cancelled, The Sun reports. That must have led to some interesting gate or onboard announcements. “We regret to advise that your flight to Malaga has been cancelled due to a bad rap dispute.” What, Brioche Dorée or Paul had served up a dodgy grab ‘n go offering that had incapacitated the captain and crew?

I wonder what led to the brawl that raised more eyebrows than a whole Benefit cosmetics boutique could ever achieve? After all, I’ve always found duty free departments rather soothing places. I generally come out smelling like a Sephora store after multiple assaults from Beauty Advisers approaching me with edt at the ready in the same slightly menacing way that a pest controller officer might sneak up on an unsuspecting cockroach before blasting it into the afterlife.

Were Booba and Kaaris angry (even in-scentsed) at the perfume pricing? Did the duo have an issue with the retailer’s plastic shopping bag (“I demand it be gift-rapped!”)? Did one believe that throwing a bottle or two of edt at the other constituted a perfume launch?

Perhaps Booba’s Exclamation (Coty) of Insolence (by Guerlain) contradicted Kaaris’s claim that he was The One (Dolce & Gabbana)? Or was Kaaris overly Provocative (Elizabeth Arden) in his claims of musical superiority, prompting Booba to tell his musical peer that you simply Envy Me (Gucci).

Did Kaaris then throw a L’eau (D’Issey) blow, prompting Booba to threaten him with a Flowerbomb (Viktor & Rolf)? Perhaps the latter accused Kaaris of being on Opium (Yves Saint Laurent)? “I told you already, it was just a Gucci Rush (Coty),” Booba snapped back. Or maybe they had both just discovered that they had been downgraded to Coach (Interparfums)?

Did someone throw a L’Eau blow?

Whatever triggered the row, both men were soon seeing Red (Giorgio Beverly Hills) and there was little sign of Amor Amor (Cacharel) or even a single Happy Heart (Estée Lauder) between them. Fortunately, thanks to a timely edp (enter the policeman) intervention, the fight was over in a L’instant (Guerlain), before either man was knocked Head over Heels (Ultima II) or it reached a dangerous Flash (Jimmy Choo) point.

Given that he’s sold over 10 million discs, Booba is clearly a talented Modern Muse (Estée Lauder) as well as a latter-day Marciano (Guess). Kaaris? Well, despite behaving like a complete Lou Lou (Cacharel) on this Bombshell (Victoria’s Secret) occasion, he’s got plenty of talent too. Perhaps Someday (Justin Bieber) both men just need to inject a little less Poison (Christian Dior) and a little more Joy (Jean Patou) into their lyrics?

By the looks of it though, the whole Unforgivable (Sean John) thing was simply a publicity stunt. It certainly appeared Very Hollywood (Michael Kors). Rather conveniently, the whole incident quickly appeared all over YouTube. “Lights, camera, action… cut… that’s a rap!”

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