[about the author]
i actually like speaking in front of large crowds. freakish,
i work crossword puzzles in ink.
i am the american nigella lawson. or maybe the american eddie
izzard. can't decide, really.
i would be a really good mom, but i'm cool with being a really
i am sometimes more perceptive than i would like to be.
i am fiercely loyal. sometimes, stupidly so.
i never play dumb. never.
i am way too hard on myself.
i am a change agent.
i sometimes cross that fine line between assertive and aggressive.
i am not afraid to tell people that i love them.
i am militantly pro-choice.
i am pro-adoption.
i know a little bit about alot of things.
i typically enjoy the company of men more than women.
i am capable of being really mean and nasty, but i fight it.
i am a lifelong cubs fan. do not laugh.
i have been known to hold a grudge.
i have hips.
i am not my sister.
i am lousy at forgiving myself.
i am an indoor kind of gal.
i am a bargain shopper. to the point of obsession.
i am 32 flavors. and then some.
conversations with dmv employees, or "things that make my head explode" - part one in a seemingly endless series
welcome to geico! in order to finish processing your request for a new auto policy, we need the following information:
- your georgia driver’s license number
please contact us with this information so we can complete your request.
huh. my georgia driver’s license number. well. that’s something. my georgia driver’s license number. no idea what that could be.
see, i don’t have a georgia driver’s license number anymore. mostly because i do not have a georgia driver’s license anymore. i have a maryland driver’s license. and, when you get your maryland driver’s license, you have to surrender your old license. that’s the term they use. “surrender.” i love it. it sounds so dramatic. like you’re making some huge sacrifice. surrender! i surrender my license to you, oh lord baltimore.
so, you can see how it might be impossible for me to give them my georgia driver’s license number.
“thank you for calling geico, how may i help you?”
“i received an email from you guys asking for my old driver’s license number. from the state i used to live in. but, i don’t have that license anymore…is that something i can authorize them to release to you, or do you know what i’ll need to do?”
“what state was it?”
“ooohhh. yeah. they won’t give that to us. Yeah, georgia won’t release that information to us. you’ll have to contact the georgia dmv and get that from them. they won’t release that to us.”
“so, they won’t release that to you?”
what? i couldn’t resist.
“no. just give them a call.”
now, there are few things in this world that i dread more than anything involving the words “department of motor vehicles.” maybe things involving the word “colon” or “pierce.” but it’s really too close to call.
“georgia department of motor vehicles.”
okay, right there…notice the total absence of any phrase even remotely resembling “may i help you?” not even “how may i direct your call.” not even “what the hell do you want?” nothing.
“i’m a former georgia resident, and i surrendered [so dramatic!] my georgia license when i moved to maryland. i’m getting new insurance, and they need my georgia driver’s license number. so, do you guys have that on record?”
“great! wonderful! okay, what will i need to do in order to get that information? i went to your web site but i didn’t see an option to request my driving records online….”
“you need to come in to the office and we’ll just tell it to you.”
i’m pretty sure i mentioned that part where i moved to maryland. and, furthermore “we’ll just tell it to you” doesn’t sound very…official.
“well, coming in to the office might be a bit tough for me…i’m in maryland now. so…”
“so…uh…is there another option for me to get that information?”
“i can mail it to you.”
i’m not trying to be ugly here when i say that i’ve seen the lightning speed with which governmental agencies tend to operate. i’ve been a state government employee. it’s glacial. you can put sod on your ass and grow tulips faster than you can get something in the mail from the department of motor vehicles.
“how about faxing? can i fax the request to you and then get the information via fax?”
“no. it’s not secure. we don’t have any way of knowing where we’re faxing it to.”
i’m just not up for a fight. it’s the dmv. it’s like the borg in star trek: resistance is futile.
“okay, i guess we’ll just do mail then. is there a form i can print off and fill out and send in?”
“i don’t need a form. just give me your address.”
so, i give her my mailing address, and wait. what am i waiting for? i’m waiting for her to ask me my social security number. or my date of birth. or even the address i lived at in georgia. something. anything.
“okay. i’ll send that out to you.”
and i’m torn. do i ask questions that might antagonize the borg, thereby ensuring that i never receive my information? never. ever. ever. i don’t want to make it angry, or give it the impression that i’m somehow opposed to assimilation, but i’m just sure that she must have forgotten something. i mean, how can she know which one of me i am? like, what if there is more than one person with my name – she didn’t even ask for my middle name.
how can she be sure this is really me asking for the information?
i can’t stand it.
“excuse me, but i’m a little confused.”
“well, sort of, yes. i mean, i don’t really understand how this is more secure than maybe faxing it to me. i mean, i just gave you an address – it could be any address. i could give you a fax number, and it could be any fax number, so i guess i just don’t understand why we can’t…i mean, i don’t understand how this is better. or more secure.”
“so, is that a fake address or something? that one you gave me.”
“no, it’s not, i mean…what i was trying to say was…”
oh, forget it. that’s what the voices in my head are screaming. just forget it. but the voice coming out of my mouth just keeps right on going.
“…and, i guess i also don’t understand how you can figure out who i am. or be sure i am really me. i mean, don’t you need to know something that will help you find me in the system? i mean, all you have is my name…just my first and last name. not even my middle name.”
“that’s a good point. okay…how about you give me your georgia driver’s license number and i could look you up that way.”
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