Handing Out Deodorant to Smelly Tourists Is Offensive

deodorantIf you hate paying for deodorant but don't mind springing for a transatlantic flight, do I have a deal for you. A dungeon in York, England attracts tourists from all over the world with its creepy shows that give patrons a "chilling experience" as they're told about York's 2,000-year dark, dark history. Sounds fun! But there's a problem. The actors aren't happy. They're glad that the tourist attraction is so popular, but they're not that excited about the crowd it's drawing. Apparently, they stink. As in, the guests have B.O. that's so offensive, management has started handing out complimentary deodorant to the smelly visitors.

I beg your pardon?


The actors in the dungeon said they were overwhelmed by the odor. Um gross. That sounds terrible. But can't they crack a window? Or build one? Or get some air purifiers up in that piece? It just seems that handing out deodorant to customers is really rude.

There are contrasting standards of hygiene in different parts of the world. We Americans probably err on the side of too obsessed with staying fresh -- using chemicals to block our natural under-arm perspiration and taking long hot showers whenever we so please probably seems silly and unhealthy to millions of people around the globe. These kinds of distinctions are what makes the world go round, no? I know that perfuming oneself has been en vogue for centuries, but I don't see what these sample-sized deodorants are gonna do besides offend people.

Because have you ever tried applying some Lady Speed Stick after you're already sweaty? I have. It just becomes a goopy, still-smelly mess that stains blouses. The supervisor of the attraction said that the fear people experience in the dungeon makes their sweat smell even worse, but I'd venture to guess it's because they're in a closed, crowded space with a ton of dry ice that's making them perspire.

I say in this case, the customer should still be right. Keep the free deodorant samples and send them to a shelter or something. If your dungeon is that smelly, find a solution that doesn't insult your audience.

What do you think is appropriate in this case?


Photo via How can I recycle this/Flickr

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