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Fun at the DMV

Moving to a new state requires that you eventually have to get a driver’s license and plates in that new state.  It requires dealing in person with the DMV.

A few years ago I took one of my kids to the DMV to get her license.  We got there when the office opened and believe it or not, we were the only ones there.  So we ignored the rope lines set up to weave the usual line of customers back and forth while they waited and instead went right up to the window.  DMV  

 “You have to go through the lines,” the guy at the window admonished us.

“But there’s no one here but us!” I protested.

He gestured to the ropes. 

I could feel the top of my head about to blow off, but my daughter intervened.  “Mom, Mom!” she said.  “I need to get my license!”  The top of my head stayed put and we plodded through the rope lines.

So last week I went to the DMV in a different state.  After an hour’s wait, I was called to the window. 

A thin veneer of Southern charm was the only difference between her and the guy I had dealt with before.  After 30 minutes of bureaucratic hassle during which I became more and more the kind of New Yorker I suspect the DMV lady hates, she told me to stand in front of the camera for the license picture.

Well, the license arrived yesterday, and now I understand the woman’s cruel smile.  I look like a convicted felon, about 30 years older than I am.  Worse yet, the license doesn’t get renewed for 7 years.  That’s power.

Not long ago there was a commercial in which kids looked directly into the camera and said things like, “I want to grow up to work in a cubicle my whole life” or “I want to be stuck in a dead-end job.”  Frankly, I don’t remember the product or service, but the kids were chillingly memorable.  Maybe one of them even said, “I want to work at the DMV.”

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