Monday, May 21, 2007

Second Puberty
I've made the statement that one of the phases of puberty for a boy is when he decides to look into cologne or aftershave as part of his manly investment in himself. (disclaimer: This is not a story about my son) This is at the time is part of looking for a competitive advantage against other guys at getting the attention of girls. What could be better then having a girl compliment how good you smell? Actually, lots of things, but at the time it sounds really sexy. And truthfully most guys would kill to get any kind of compliment from a girl.

So, I realized this weekend that I must have entered a second puberty, because I found myself contemplating a scent again. I realized that the twelve year old bottle of Stetson that I got from the drug store for $9 was most likely not the best thing for me to put on myself anymore. It was time to move up, but what musky aroma should I select to announce my presence?

Unfortunately, I think the odors I carry with me most often are that of charcoal and soccer fields. I don't think my wife finds these odors to pleasent. Comments like, "you stink" and "take a couple of showers before you come to bed" can give one that impression. I don't know however what does smell good to women.

The smells I like are fresh bread, warm cookies, cappucinnos, and bacon. They don't sell these odors at the fragrance counter though. I asked. The closes I could find were some scratch and sniff stickers at the local party supply store. After a day of attaching these stickers all over my body and scratching myself furiously before I entered a room, I decided it wasn't worth it. Instead of having the desired reaction people moved away and apparently thought I had some sort of skin disease. It didn't help that it's allergy season and I kept blowing my nose and wiping my runny eyes. On more than one occasion while I was trying to release the scents from the stickers people asked me if I needed them to call an ambulance. Mall security followed me around like he was just waiting for confirmation to quarantine me from the general populace.

So I wen't back to the fragrance counter and began frustrating the clerk, because I had no idea what I wanted. I decided to start at the beginning of the alphabet with Armani, then Attitude, then on and on. By the time I got to Euphoria by Calvin Klein, I felt like I'd been huffing paint for an hour. Good and bad. Everything started to smell the same and since none of it smells natural per se, I didn't know what to go with.

I remembered my friend Big Dirty swearing by Tag Body Spray. He said it was so good that they had to put disclaimers on the commercials in case you were attacked by cheerleaders or women in the grocery store. I pointed out that I thought that was just kind of a joke in the commercials. Big Dirty said that, "Like God you just kind of have to go with it. Just in case". I asked the person at the counter if they carried it and she just laughed at me, said no but that I could get some at the drug store. Shit! I knew that wasn't a good sign. Not wanting to get laughed at anymore, I hurriedly picked the closest bottle on display and left. It had some Oriental script on the bottle, and doesn't smell like breakfast or dessert. Did I do good?