Thursday, March 18, 2010

Where oh where has common sense gone?

Just woke up from a short slumber, but my internal clock is set to this time so whatever, I'll work with it. You know how the most important, nagging, worrisome, or wrath-inspiring thoughts hit you first when you wake up? Well, my first thought moments ago, after the oh man let's go pee thought, was again how much I despise the Department of Motor Vehicles. It doesn't even matter what state you live in. I've done this song and dance in four states - I know, it's my own damn fault (just decide where you're gonna be Heather!) but still, sometimes a big fat dose of common sense would be nice.

I'm sure those ladies and gentlemen behind the counter are of average intelligence, it's just that they don't display that when talking to the general public!

We moved back from Maryland a few months ago. If you are a long time reader of this here blog, you might remember what a total expensive mess that was, so you might understand why I haven't made the effort to go to the Georgia DMV until now. I should be honest and say that there's one other tiny reason I needed to do it now also - I was the very proud winner of one $200 speeding ticket almost a month ago and the oh so nice officer gave me a 'warning' about my inaccurate license and tags. Since I plan to go to court to fight said ticket, I at least need to show a good faith effort to get this other detail worked out. I calculated this in my head of course. Should I just pay the stinking ticket and drive real slow until next January? Yes, that would have cost less money. But, this is stubborn me we're talking about here - the ticket thing I view as unfair, so naturally I am going to fight it. Therefore, I had to go to the DMV and get this changeover process rolling.

I am from this area right? I even remember my GA license number. A couple of weeks ago I changed my address with my bank and ordered paper copies of my statements so I would have the required proof of address. So today I grabbed my MD license, my social security card, and my bank statement and headed out the door with Hal to drive the 20 miles to the DMV. We get there and of course I do NOT have what I need. The girl flatly tells me that I need to prove my U.S. citizenship. My Maryland driver's license won't do, despite the fact that I had to show them everything under the sun last January to get that fine piece of plastic. To add insult to injury, I also need to show why I've changed my name from my original maiden name, i.e. I've got to show them my marriage certificate. I tell her that I haven't been gone that long - I still remember my number - couldn't she just look my up in the computer? Nope, they have changed everything she says. Hal asks the girl if it will be a problem that our certificate is from Jamaica and she asks if it is written in English. He says sure it is, they speak English in Jamaica - and she says oh yeah they just have an accident...uh accent right? (you see what we're dealing with here?)

He gets his license because all he needs is his birth certificate, proof of address, and MD license. I sit over in the uncomfortable chairs with the kiddo trying to calm myself down. Mostly the Zoloft I take keeps me relatively even keel, but today I had to summon a little something I just thought about how the producer of Forensic Files (my favorite show on television) said yesterday that he liked my blog. Over and over I chanted inside my head...forget the license, that guy loves my writing! He says I have talent!

When I'm calm I start to wonder where in the world these documents are that I have to bring back. I need to get this done today because thanks to Georgia's dire state of financial affairs, the workers at the DMV are furloughed tomorrow. Hal, Sarah, and I make a mad dash out of there once he has his dinky new paper license and we high tail it home to find what I need. Luckily, despite our best efforts to be as unorganized and sloppy as we can be, we find the stuff in about 5 minutes and we go as fast as reasonably possible back to the DMV and get there less than an hour before they close. I wait ten minutes before they acknowledge my presence, and then successfully give me my license. The agent working behind the counter this time asked me for all my documents, takes a CURSORY look at them and gives me my license. Then he says, hmmm - you were already in our system as Heather Posey so you shouldn't have had to bring that marriage certificate. My license number is also exactly the same as it always was. I ask the man where common sense has gone. He gives me a phone number to call to complain. It did amuse me that another lady a couple booths down was giving them all sorts of hell about her license, even though she already had it! I guess working at the DMV simply requires patience and politeness rather than just good ole run of the mill walking around sense!

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