I too love the smell of game manuals. Why is it we do this? Next step will be licking them for that "Just about to be installed" taste. Honestly, i guess the geek inside has it's own sense, moreso than fast heart rate when your system does a belly flop (or a barrel roll... yeah, that's better). Yeah, when your system DOES A BARREL ROLL, you don't care what it sniffs of... unless it's burning... or smoke...
As for hardware, it's only video cards and motherboard i really smell, but only because it's strong enough to grab my attention as i open the box.
Also, am i the only person that regardless of anything else, will keep every single hardware component box "just in case" (and because it looks awesome to have boxes that contained several thousand pounds/dollars worth of stuff from over the years) unless i need to return it (and then i keep the new box if i'm getting it replaced or exchanged)?
I do have an idea though. Next time you're in amongst people you know, but aren't sure of their interests, just say "I have BITS up my nose", and see who the true geeks in the group are. Or is it just me that would sit there and laugh on the inside as their fruitless attempts at insulting me just bounce off the outside of me? =D
And what about that new mail order bride smell? I kid, i kid. (No, really ).