“Smells like PTSD.”
When Americans are asked what they want to smell like, they tend to respond with slightly worried silence. We understand that, it’s weird. It’s personal. And there’s no way to answer the question without sharing far more about yourself than you’d otherwise be comfortable doing. If you say you want to smell “like rose and cinnamon” you probably are somewhat feminine and prefer sweet breakfasts over savory ones. If you say you prefer the smell of axe body spray, you’re a douchebag. If you respond by saying, “I want to smell like ropes and pepper spray,” uh, Jesus Christ you’re a kidnapper aren’t you? Holy shit, you totally are. You totally are.
So we’re not here to ask America what it wants to smell like. We’d like to guess bourbon and cigar smoke, but maybe that’s just the optimist in us. We’d at least feel pretty confident saying that “like General Patton” would be pretty low on most people’s list.
But the joke’s on you, because not only is there cologne that smells like General Patton, but there’s a whole line of colognes meant to smell like each branch of the American Military! Because gimmicks are the only reason why we buy anything!
Which actually helps explain the popularity of T.G.I. Fridays.
Parfumologie, a company which describes itself as “designers of celebrity and licensed perfume products” got support from the U.S. Military to create colognes for each of America’s military branches. We greatly support this for several reasons. First of all, a portion of the proceeds will go to the United States Military, and honestly the only people who would have a problem with that are either enemies of the United States or people who are “technically” US Citizens but who also “technically” get booed mercilessly every time they open their fat mouth at the PTA meeting on behalf of their underachieving children. So, supporting the Military? Awesome.
But even more awesome than supporting our troops? Support an idea that is clearly steeped in concentrated insanity. Clearly, when you’re going to make a cologne that “best demonstrates the finest traits of each military branch” while also not being something that “smells like seawater and gunpowder,” you’re going to have to take some liberties. We know that Don’t Ask Don’t Tell was finally repealed, but it’s still hard to believe that “Lavender” is an odor that defines the Army experience. But before we revel in the insane marketing genius who decided to create this beautiful American nightmare, we’ll give you an introduction to the products of The American Line, listed in order of how appealing their names make them sound.
Nothing wrong here. This is just a pretty awesomely named product from the branch of the military that has been feeling self-conscious about their image ever since the Village People reminded everyone how historically gay the Navy is. But as far as a name goes, Liberty is inspired. Any time you can respond to the question, “What’s that smell?” by simply saying, “Liberty,” you fucking do it. It could smell like seawater, engine grease, and dirty mops and we’d still wear it. It’s a cologne called Liberty! If only the rest of the set was so aptly named…
AIR FORCE: STEALTH
Stealth seems like a good name for an Air Force cologne, until you realize that they’re selling a product that’s supposed to give you a unique smell that helps you stand up and get noticed. Naming a cologne “Stealth” is like naming a Body Spray “no woman will ever touch you in a sexual manner again.” Not exactly the most effective title there. But don’t feel sorry for our Airmen, at least they have Top Gun to fall back on.
COAST GUARD: RIP TIDE
You just gave a cologne a name that sort of makes it sound like its describing a fart. You may say that we’re just being immature about that, but you can’t deny that a whole slew of young men and women serving in the United States Military would read that sentence and go, “Ha! It totally is about a fart. Rip tide, ha!”
MARINES: DEVIL DOG
Being a Marine is so cool that they can make a movie about your war experiences even if you never get to fire a gun in combat. So it seems sort of unfortunate that they decided to go with a name that sounds like it would smell awful here. Yes, we know why they went with the name Devil Dog, but that doesn’t explain why anyone would want to smell like a dog. Saying “you smell like a dog” is about as flattering as saying “you make love like a fourteen year old virgin.” It’s not really a fitting way to give due deference to Marines. It’d be like naming a cologne after a male porn star and calling it “Dick Rot.”
What’s extremely American? The Army? What’s exceedingly American? Uh, we answered that already, but uh, also General Patton, we guess. But of all the things you could have named after the Army, they decided to make an odor named after…George S. Patton? The website says that Patton “defined masculinity,” so they gave it a “sensual, woodsy fragrance.” First of all, we’re pretty sure he would have kicked your ass if you had described his “sensual” or “woodsy,” and secondly, Patton was an American hero, and a true American in the sense that he gave roughly less than zero fucks about anything other than being American, but that also means that he fully embraced America’s dietary habits. The man looked as if he’d smell like chicken grease, is what we mean to say.
So while, say, “Desert Commando” might be a name that describes the modern army somewhat but also sounds like it’d be a pretty good cologne name, having a cologne called “Desert Commando” doesn’t quite say, “Let’s slap a soldier who has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder” like naming the damn thing “Patton.” That…that is what they wanted it to smell like, right?
Now that you have seen the full line of American Military colognes, and seen our subsequent objection to put any odor on our skins that isn’t called “Liberty” or “Desert Commando” (seriously, how much better of a name is that?) we can now at least take a nod at the absurdity of this whole venture, and christen it as wonderfully American. Because it really is. Starting in September it’s going to start appearing on militaryshoppingchannel.com, because the only way to make an genius idea like this even more American is to try to exploit it for as much profit as possible, which also helps support the Armed Forces. It’s win/win. Except for the fact that the nicest description we’ve heard of any of these colognes is that they’re, uh, “earthy.” So are worms, you don’t see us rubbing those on our skin (although now you can, and there’s porn of it. Thanks rule 34!)
Yup, he’ll be in it.
But goddamn it, this is America, and we’re going to try to get money through whatever crazy ideas we can come up with. And that is why today, we at America Fun Fact of the Day salute you, insane cologne company. May your next idea be equally insane and just as gloriously American.