In this modern world, our armpits are spoiled for choice.
All I wanted was deodorant. I'm not too demanding so there were very few criteria to meet: definitely not aerosol; glass rather than plastic (unlikely, I knew); definitely not "lite".
The "flavours" available defied belief. I won't leave you in suspense; I will tell you first what I chose then share some of the other options with you. You might rejoice in the fact that you live in such a deodorant-rich period of history.
I chose Africa. It was a roll-on and, sigh, it came in a plastic dispenser.
I imagined, there in my very armpit, vast herds of grazing wildebeest with unruly dark manes, trumpeting elephants, herbivorous hippos, gangly giraffes, perhaps a soupçon of essence of rhinoceros or zebra, a subtle touch of tincture of lemur. Lion juice, perhaps.
But warthog or spotted hyena I could do without.
Maybe, with fauna, I was barking up the wrong tree. Perhaps my deodorant would be based more on the flora of the dark continent.
Protea might be the star of the show. It is also commonly known as sugarbush so the nectar might contribute a sweetness to my deodorant.
Weeping boer-bean also boasts copious nectar so it could also contribute to the overall sweetness.
Paperbark thorn might not be so suitable given that the bark or root is used to treat urinary infections. It also has astringent properties so should be kept well away from our little roll-on dispenser.
Or perhaps the focus could be more on geography. Might I be anointing my armpits with eau de Limpopo or essence of Lake Tanganyika? Even eau de Nil?
Alas, no. Sorry if I've let you down but I couldn't really identify any of the above. The scent I detected could only be described as ... well ... deodorant. No wildebeest, no protea, no whiff de Dar es Salaam market at high noon.
I had simply bought deodorant.
But let me tell you about some of the other options from which I could have chosen.
I could have chosen Fresh Cucumber and Green Tea. That would have been perfect if my armpits were playing summer tennis and there were going to be mint juleps on the verandah for afters.
In a similar vein I could have had Thursday Plantation or Tea Tree Sport.
What about Hoity Toity Body Spray? Perhaps, the less said about that the better.
And, in a class of its own, Anarchy for Her. I realise that's a feminine offering but it had to be mentioned.
More male-directed was Pour Homme (also available in Sport) but I can't help wondering why they chose French in an English-speaking market. Perhaps For Bloke didn't quite cut the mustard though why Pour Homme does is still a bit of a puzzle.
Some were even "fragrance-free" and that option makes a lot of sense to me. Think of the money saved by not having to sit around boardroom tables over expensive lunches trying to dream up "flavours".
To close this piece I couldn't resist thinking up a few "flavours" of my own.
My first is simply called Asia. See, I can do continents as well as the next man. Antarctica could be a goer too with its suggestions of icy freshness. Also penguins.
In the culinary category, Mandarin with Gingernut Crumble. Or Apricot, Almond and Water Buffalo.
And, for something blokier, Barbecue Bonanza with subtle traces of pig fat against a background of acrid smoke.
Do not for a moment think I have forgotten the pulling power of a Kiwi approach. My last offerings are Kiwi as: Pohutukawa with Pavlova; Redolence de Rotorua.
It is a rich, wondrous and fragrant world we inhabit.
Wyn Drabble is a teacher of English, a writer, musician and public speaker.