What does Freedom smell like? Old Spice Deodorant. What does Old Spice Deodorant smell like? Freedom.

Really. It says so right on the bottle. They’ve isolated the scent of independence. That should transcend gender.

And that’s why I’m wearing it out to a Halloween party. Mostly because I missed the chance to wear on the 4th of July. Or when I was a 14 year old male in search of liberty, I guess. Also, because this is a scientific experiment to see if it will work for ladies. I’m hoping for an Axe Effect, but with Old Spice.

The deodorant goes okay with my Julia Allison costume, I guess, except for smelling like teenage boy. I had so many questions: Would axe deodorant do all it promised in the advertisements? Would I just be tearing things up with my pheromones that night? Would I be turning down all the free vodka offers?

I was ready for the packs of wild dogs and male models following me down the street.

I was prepared to make that Halloween party my woman-cave.

But when I walked in, I was surprised to find that my simulated freedom-ness didn’t overwhelm anyone. People mostly asked what my costume was, didn’t comment on how much they desired me right at the moment. Though they could have just been being coy.

Sometimes real life isn’t exactly like advertisements, because everything is sad, and nothing is ever good.

Or maybe I just wasn’t wearing enough!

I ducked into the bathroom to apply more. On my way out, I heard a girl remark, “are there dudes in here?”

“It smells like my boyfriend,” the other girl replied. She was wearing a sexy-Cookie-Monster costume, which was kind of awesome, so I guess her boyfriend is a lucky man, and the Old Spice worked out well for him.

That said, no, random chicks, that was not the scent of your boyfriend. That was the scent of freedom.

I decided I had to go a little bit farther with this, you know, to indicate to people that I was ready for them to begin fawning over me. I went up to an acquaintance and asked what he thought of my new perfume. He sort of buried his head in my neck. It was more awkward and uncomfortable than it was sexy. I think it might have been the lack of a soundtrack. BowChikAWahWah would have made that moment totally comfortable for everyone.

“Yeah,” he said, “It’s great. Chanel no. 5, right?”

“Something cooler!” I replied.

Though on the upside, someone should check to see if freedom is one of Chanel no. 5’s notes, because that guy could have been on to something.

I tried asking a few more people, but everyone just seemed to nod politely. It was like they weren’t feeling out of control with lust for me at all.

Finally, I turned to a very good friend and said, “How delicious – how free – do I smell right now?” He took a whiff of me and sighed. “Jennifer,” he said, “I don’t know what you paid for that perfume, and I’m sure it’s great. But you smell like me when I was 12 and wanted girls to like me. You do not smell free. You smell like mainstream male deodorant.”

I think next year if I want people to fawn over me lustfully, I’m just breaking out a sexy-cookie-monster costume. But on the way home, I did see a pack of teenage boys wearing cavemen costumes. And we all smelt just alike.