When Truman was a young lad, I bought a fully loaded
BMW that included an emergency brake handle covered in black leather.
Much to my chagrin, Truman thought of it as a yummy black bone & gnawed on it enough to make it quite unattractive & slimy.
As it was a new car, I found this rather annoying & immediately took it back to BMW to be replaced. Bob, the shop, foreman whom I've known for years, just smiled with understanding.
I should have known: The BMW engineers, un-aware of Truman's proclivity for emergency brake handles, had designed it in one piece, i.e. the handle could not be unscrewed from the actual emergency brake mechanism, so when I retrieved my car about $500 later, I had a new black leather covered emergency brake handle as well as a new mechanism.
To be sure that this would never happen again, I bought sour apple that really tastes awful to animals & smeared it all over the emergency brake handle. It's supposed to dry rather quickly but I managed to get some of it on my right hand on the first yank.
Whether grabbing the handle while it was still wet was a mistake or not I don't know but when I returned to the car, my friend, "T" had done it again. Thankfully this time it wasn't as bad -- just a couple of nibbles so after a short conversation with the boy, I let it go.
About ten days later, I must have gotten on Truman's wrong side, maybe he just woke up on the wrong side, maybe, in true Bouvier fashion, he decided he was going to see how far he could push his luck.
Whatever -- after a short ride to the supermarket, I returned to find another gummy mess which I couldn't ignore. Back went the car to BMW. Bob, the service manager just nodded but didn't say anything.
Well, to make a long story shorter, it happened a third time as well. Within 6 months, I had invested +/- $1500 in a brand new car that had about 3,000 miles on it and I became the laughing stock of the BMW dealership in Darien, CT.
Even today, as I look down at that handle, there are 3 or 4 teeth marks on it, one loose thread, but nothing major. It serves to remind me of the fun times we had when junior was a young fellow, learning how to ride in a sports car & testing my limits.
Go ahead, laugh at my expense but I often wonder if that's how he got those black spots on his tongue.
Ridgefield CT USA
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