I could tell they were new because they had "novinky" labelled on the box.
Ladeeez and Gentlemen, Ambi-Pur proudly presents:
His 'n' Hers car perfume.
Yep. One box for the manly men, distinguishable by its brown colour, and three photos of "manly" things: a black&white pic of a flexed bicep, grass and the open rooooaad. The woman's was pink (sigh) and featured pictures of lilies, lipsticks and a peach. Oh my. In a fiendish act of savvy marketing, the manufacturers have tapped into my long-repressed desire to dance gaily in a shower of lipgloss while clutching a huge bouquet of flowers to my chest and stomping on soft fruit.
Although the boxes were sealed to prevent reckless perfume abuse they also provided a handy-dandy scratch 'n' sniff patch at the top. After rummaging through the boxes to find stickers that were still intact, I can reveal that "His" smells of cheap aftershave with a hint of paper and "Hers" smells of cheap floral fabric softener. Somehow that doesn't make me feel any better. To say nothing of the complicated logistics problems created by having a gender-based car scents.
Fortunately, when I went to have a coffee to recover from the shock, I found the following personal advert at the back of the weekly English-language newspaper, The Prague Post which made me feel much better:
Edited to ad(d): Didn't have a copy of the advert with me when I wrote this, but thought I'd remembered enough. Except I went home, checked the paper and it's actually worse than I remembered. Here it is in full unabridged glory, but without the big box around it that caught my eye in the first place:
Rich, handsome, powerful yet modest urban professional seeks a woman to gaze into his eyes adoringly before and after. I am 33 y.o. from London looking for a younger Czech girl for a serioius relationship. No time-wasters
What can I say? If it's not a joke, then in this man's world, "irony" is a bit like "goldy" but made of iron.