Hello Tele-enthusiasts! After playing guitar for 35 years, I finally bought a Tele (the Fender American Professional in butterscotch blonde). I can't remember the last time I was so inspired by an instrument. Buying my first Strat or first LP was also exciting, but they did not have the same impact on me...I'm in love! Reading through this forum was very helpful in the decision process, so thank you! Okay, on to the point of my posting. I've searched through this site's message boards, and others, and I see quite a bit of debate over the purpose of bridge covers or ashtrays on Teles. Some say it's purely aesthetic, and others claim it was originally intended for shielding purposes of the bridge pickup. Either way, what then is the purpose of the new mini-bridge cover on the Fender Professional Telecasters? It's quite small, and just barely covers the end of the bridge... it only covers the heads of the intonation screws, but perhaps that is the purpose? That is, to clean up the appearance slightly? I really appreciate any thoughts the more experienced Tele players have on this. By the way, if you have not tried one, the new mini-bridge cover does not prevent right-hand palm muting, which is a question I have seen others ask. In fact, at least for me, it seems to provide a nice comfortable spot at which to anchor my palm.