How many keychain charms are too many?

Dear Car Talk

Dear Car Talk | Sep 01, 1990

Dear Tom and Ray:

My husband and I are having an argument that I hope you can settle. My key chain has a lot of items hanging on it, very few of which are keys. I have charms, key chains with funny sayings, polished rocks, a Swiss army knife, a bottle opener, and other items. It's more of a lethal weapon than a key chain! Anyway, he thinks the weight of it will eventually drag the ignition slot out of line or damage it in some way. I say it won't. Can you enlighten us?

RAY: Enlighten or lighten? Actually Allison, as usual, there are things that go unsaid in marital disputes. Luckily, we're going to help you get to the bottom of this. It's not likely that the key chain will damage the ignition. But that's not what's bothering your husband.

TOM: He's bothered by two things. First, he hates all the noise that your key chain makes as it swings around and bangs against the dashboard and the steering column. That's driving him absolutely crazy. Second, he gets embarrassed every time you hoist this thing out of your pocket book in public. He's convinced that people think he's married to the Imelda Marcos of key chain collectors.

RAY: He's trying to make his objections sound rational by focusing on the quasi scientific "ignition damage" argument.

TOM: We think he should be up front about it, and tell you that he thinks you ought to spend your time collecting something more sensible like Star Trek cards or Click and Clack porcelain miniatures.

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