A TTAC contributor who shall remain nameless recently raised an issue at our secret conclave regarding the free gifts that automakers sometimes give out to journalists during press trips. Said writer was due to receive a very big ticket item (less expensive than a Rolex, but more than an iPod) and wanted to know if he should accept or refuse it. The answer, handed down by our very own BS, was “take it – and then send it to Derek so he can give it away as a contest prize.”
While I have yet to find a large parcel sitting on my desk containing said item, I did get a pair of Oakley Karting shoes on a recent junket. They are size 11, which is not only my shoe size, but that a fairly common one. As per TTAC regulations, I informed Bertel of my gift, but I was met with a stern rebuke.
“Keep them,” he barked in his gravelly Bavarian baritone. “Nobody wants smelly shoes or sweaty t-shirts.” The shoes, I can assure you, are brand new, never worn, though they may not have the original box due to packing restrictions. I already have a pair of authentic Made in Pakistan karting boots I bought for $40 at Mosport, and they not only work well, but my girlfriend has forbid me from wearing any motorsports apparel outside the house.
If you want them, just
write an 800-word piece praising me to the high heavens about my Semitic good looks or my superlative prose tell me why you deserve them. Otherwise I’ll leave them in my hotel room. The winner gets the shoes, mailed to them at my expense, as well as their essay published as a “Ur-Turn” contribution.