Friday, April 20, 2007

A Day At The License Bureau

I took today off of work to recover a bit and to take care of a few errands. Number one on my list was getting new license plates for my new (used) car. My temporary tags had expired and my first trip to the license bureau (ON the expiration date) netted me another item on the To Do list instead of new plates. Does this happen to everybody else also, or is it just me? I think the folks who work there get a secret thrill out of telling people they don't have everything they need (after standing in line for an hour to get to the counter). I think they keep a tally and compare notes at the end of the day or week, with extra points for turning away those who are on their 2nd or 3rd trip.

Me, it took 3 trips.

Trip One, I got half way through the process and was told I needed a vehicle inspection. "But," I said, "I bought it from a dealer; doesn't it have to be inspected before they sell it?" "No, it doesn't," was the answer. Don't ask why I would think this. I know good and well that I may have just purchased the next Lemon and the dealership will claim no involvement whatsoever when the thing bursts into flames, but I expected all of the paperwork in the specially marked "For Glove Box" envelope to be everything that I would need at the license bureau.

Strike One.

Trip Two (following an extensive tour of the mechanic's shop wherein my Prince was poked and prodded and given a clean bill of health), I waited, and waited, and waited, and finally got to the counter only to hear the words, "You don't have your property tax receipts." And I was quick to respond, "But last time, you were able to pull that up online and confirm that they were paid," to which she snapped back, "The system is down. You should always bring your property tax receipts." Hrmph.

Strike Two.

It was quicker to drive to the courthouse (good thing I took the day off) than to drive home to get a copy of my property tax receipts. So I stood in line at the courthouse and for $1, obtained a copy of my paid property tax receipts.

Trip Three. After another long line in the queue, I triumphantly emerged at the counter with all of the requisite paperwork in hand, as if I was finally ready for the oral exam portion of my dissertation. Title work? Check. Property tax receipts? Check, check. Proof of Insurance? Check. Vehicle Inspection certificate? Check. Bill of Sale? Check! License plates conferred!!

And I still have a couple more hours left for the other errands on my list.
You would think I was trying to adopt a child or something. Sheesh.



At 7:49 AM, April 29, 2007, Blogger Foo said...

You can always count on your time being undervalued by everyone but yourself.

If if makes you feel any better to know you're not the only one, you should have seen what Turtle went through when she recently had to have her hang tag renewed. She took her filled-out doctor's form to whatever office handles the hang tags. They told her it had to be notarized. She took the form to a notary at Kinko's. The notary looked the form over, put her stamp on it, looked the form over again, and then decided that she didn't like the wording and wouldn't sign it. Turtle then had to return to the government office to get a new form to send back to the doctor. This time she got a different person. When Turtle explained what had happened, the woman noted that all the information was in the computer from the last time and couldn't understand why there'd been so much hassle.

"How long have you been in the wheelchair?" she asked.

Over 30 years.

She muttered something about 'why can't people use some common sense', accepted the partially-notarized form, and gave Turtle her hang tag.

At 11:10 PM, April 29, 2007, Blogger Gwynne said...

Good grief! That's hard to imagine, but not so hard to believe. I really think that part of the problem is a need to be "in control." People working in thankless jobs have to get some job satisfaction some way and I think this is how they go about it. I have never heard of a notary refusing to sign something because he/she didn't like the wording on a form. Most of the time they don't even know what they're notarizing. Poor Turtle!


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