Oh my God, what’s that smell?
The 2014 Tour de France is less than 100 days away and sadly I am almost out of my French deodorant. It’s back to the organic Tom’s Lavender scented stick and life just won’t have the same wonderful perfume.
I’m down to my last sprays on the can I bought somewhere in France during last years’ Tour. How, you ask, did one can manage to last so long?
Well, the fabulous smell of my Rogé Cavaillès spray was so good and my wife loved it so much that I decided to use it only for special occasions and weekends. I’d stick with my hippy all natural, aluminum-free Tom’s stick during the week.
I arrived at the Tour for stage 4 in Nice, the team time trial. As always with Le Grand Shindig, I hit the ground running and sweating like a pig. You’re racing everywhere, back and forth to team buses, up and mountains, chasing riders all over France. You’re always on the clock and nearly always behind. In the Tour, the riders ride and the journalists run.
Thing was, I’d forgotten to pack deodorant but I just didn’t have time for the first week to stop and buy deodorant. It’s not like the States where every place sells everything and they’re open 24/7. Just one of many reasons the French are far more civilized than us.
Finally, when I’d started to stink like a true Parisian in August on the metro, I ran into a pharmacy and picked something out. I didn’t know anything about French deodorant, having spent zero time on the subject, so I just haphazardly picked up one. Ahh, back to smelling human and the other journalists and photographers stopped avoiding me.
When I got home, I sprayed on the Rogé Cavaillès in the bathroom and my wife said, wow, what’s that smell, I love it? Why, it’s my fancy French deodorant, honey.
She was so drawn to the smell that I suggested I book my ticket to the 2014 Tour de France immediately if for no other reason than to stockpile cans of the alluring French anti-stink spray.
My wife is too smart to fall for a ploy like that. In fact, the only ploy that works is “honey, if I go to the Tour for two weeks I can make $15,000 — which I haven’t figured out how to do. The first tour I lost several grand for the three weeks, the second tour I barely broke even and last year I actually made a few grand but not enough to impress the wife/accountant.
In any case, as the can grew lighter and lighter in my hand, it came to signify my dwindling chances of going to this year’s Tour. (The other being the sudden arrival of a full-time job.) Every time I sprayed the Rogé Cavaillès, it was like my Tour dream evaporated just a little bit more.
This last month I’ve been extra careful in applying my French deodorant. If it’s not a date night with the wife or a signature event, I stick with the Tom’s. I’ve gone from two sprays under each armpit to one quick spray.
But sadly, even with careful resource management, the end draws near and with it any small hope of being in France this Summer for the greatest of all athletic events. I figure I’ve got two weeks at best left in the can. Yes, there are tears streaming down my face and I wish I’d brought back some French Kleenex tissue to deal with that.
This summer I will be sitting at home in Norther California watching the Tour de France on television and smelling of Tom’s lavender stick deodorant.
It won’t be the same, and while my wife is happy I have a full-time job and money is filling up the bank account, she knows the significant implication of that decision.
I won’t smell nearly as good.