Friday, November 17, 2017

DMV 1, NMS 0

Speaking of roadblocks!

There are a lot of scary things in the world, but for me, the DMV is way up there in the top ten list of scary things! Thanks to moving every few years for work, I can only claim experience with the motor vehicle people in seven states, but let’s just say they all can be frustrating. OK, frustrating and not really scary, let’s not be overly dramatic about this. Here’s my latest experience.

Move to a new state, read the rules for getting a license and changing the title of my car to get plates in the new state. Read the website that explains the process. Read the list of REQUIRED documents about 10 times. Make a list and physically check off that I have everything before going to the DMV. CALL the DMV and make an appointment. Hey, this state lets you make an appointment, how bad can that be?

Arrive on time, check in, and the checker-inner hands me some forms to fill out. Hmmm, the online information didn’t say anything about filling out a form, here we go. Fill out forms, check in, and get a number. Sit in large waiting room with about 30 service desks, just like the pharmacy it has the automated voices “Now serving, at counter 22, A10, A10.” It was like being at bingo, with so many counters, letters, numbers, announcements, but no one ever shouted BINGO!

Finally get called up to the counter. I present all the documents it said to have on line, so I’m feeling like I’ve got this one nailed. Problem. As proof of residence, I had printed out my bank statement with the new address in this state. The problem is that this isn’t good enough, because it wasn’t MAILED to the new address in this state. I have a pleasant discussion with counter 27 guy, and they are just here to enforce the rules. I point out that NO ONE gets their bank statements in the mail, I don’t get ANY bank statements or bills in the mail. They acknowledge that “this has happened before,” but it doesn’t really help me today now does it?

OK, let’s just stop here and remind ourselves that it’s 2017, and the ideas of a “paperless office” or “paperless billing” or “bank by mail, online, deposit by phone” ARE NOT BRAND NEW!

To be honest, I was applying for the “enhanced” driver’s license that would allow me to fly in an airplane, and to even visit Canada, so I can understand that the government really wants us to prove that we live where we say we live, and that we are who we say we are, etc. I don’t know how this will work when we all have self-driving cars, maybe we won’t need a driver’s license, and we’ll just get those chips implanted in our brains. At least with that I wouldn’t have to stand in line at the DMV.

So, I had to back off from the “enhanced ID” and get a standard driver’s license. That just means that when I change my bank statements to good old fashioned snail-mail that I then have to decide if I still want an enhanced ID, go back to the DMV, show them more paper, pay more money, and get another driver’s license.

On a positive note, I signed up to be an organ donor. I guess they didn’t want any trumpet donors or guitar donors.

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