Remember when you were a kid, in kindergarden, and you would willingly smile for the school photographer, and loved picture day? The school photogs in my school always used to call us all something, like Princess, or Strawberry Shortcake, or something else. We would all giggle and compare names we had been called.
Welp, then you grow up. You may or may not realize you do or do not photograph well. And you are not so quick to grin at anybody with a camera, least of all the DMV. Texas is the most primitive state for driving. In Pennsylvania, for instance, all of the testing and pictures are done on a computer. The BMV there was clean, and still slow, but efficiently slow, if you know what I mean. Then I moved to Indiana. Tests there are given on a xerox of a xerox of a xeroxed xerox. Little circles to fill in on a number two pencil, and graded by people with possibly an 8th grade education who enjoy lording their position over you. But at least the pictures are computerized, and you can look before it is finalized.
Not so in Texas.
Last week, I decided it was high time to transfer my license and car registration. I showered the night before and even slept with rollers in my hair so I could have a perfect glam look. I figure if I have to carry the license for 6 years, it may as well look as hott as possible. I got up the next morning and did a full makeup job, even putting the slightly sparkly white eye shadow in the corners of my eyes so they would look bright and cheerful in the picture. I wore a simple black low cut shirt and felt pretty good about the whole thing. Until I got to the DMV.
The wait time was not all that bad, considering. I got there, took a number, then saw a notice that they do not accept credit or debit cards. But they do accept checks and cash. And I had neither. On a quick aside, why would the DMV not take credit or debit cards? Wouldn't there be less risk of bounced checks and all that mess? Anyway, we left and drove to an ATM. When I got back, I still had just enough time to fill out the evil forms. When my number was called, the fevil (think about "fugly", and you get fevil) woman took my drivers license, social sec. card and birth certificate and whisked them away without explanation to have them checked by her supervisor. They apparently passed muster and she returned with them. Then she snottily explained that they would be ok, since the names matched. Well duh. I am not and have not ever been married. So the name on all three documents is exatly the same. Because this is a military oriented town, she had assumed that I had moved here to marry some GI, and had a maiden name issue. Had she checked them first, I would not have had to gothrough that moment of big brother panic.
Then she asked if I had a car to register. I said yes and she informed me, with no small amount of glee, that I would have to register my car first before getting my license. Primitive Texas Part Two. The DMV does not handle car registrations. That is in a separate building. Because thats logical and convenient. That wouldn't have been a problem, expect the whole reason I was going to get my license first was because I had no idea where I had put my cars title. So I went home and decided an afternoon at the lake would make me feel better. In the hunt for sunscreen (SPF 1000 for the lovely and pasty Glow White here) I found the title, on the shelf near the door so I wouldn't forget it...
I went to another branch of the tax assessors office, far away from the DMV with their evil employees and paid dearly to register my car. Keep in mind that I drive an ancient 18 year old Camry. Yeah, it's old. But, I have not had car payments in 10 years, it has slightly less than 130,000 miles, and oh yes, gets 30 miles to the gallon bitches. I love the MariaMobile. $172.30 to register my car. Plus inspection. $40 dollars alone was for the freaking sticker! Indiana does not require windshield stickers, only plate stickers, and annual registration there was less than $60. Considering this is the oil state, I expected my $40 sticker to come with an ounce of black gold, but no such luck. Some days I seriously hate the government.
So anyway, now that my car is registered, on Monday I am going to make another go at getting my license. I will re-do the hair, fab makeup and cleavage baring top. I will go to the DMV, wait in line, fill out paperwork, and get my picture taken. Then, I will get a piece of paper stating my license ison the way. 7-10 business days later, I will actually get the license. No picture ID inbetween, which means I will have to prepurchase the booze to erase the DMV memories. And I am betting that the DMV person deliberately trying to catch me with my eyes half closed will not call me an endearing name like Princess.