Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Angriest Place on Earth

The DMV truly is hell's waiting room.

Today, I went there to get my driver's license renewed, and spent a total of 27 minutes inside. During that time I witnessed seven fights, two of which almost got physical. And all but one of them were started by a DMV worker.

Let's just start with the fact that getting your driver's license renewed in Utah has become an epic task. They now have so many requirements it is unlikely that you will be able to get your license in just one visit. Every time you miss one of these requirements? There is a DMV worker standing there willing to tell you you have to start the whole process over again. And they are willing to tell it to you in a way that blends smug and nasty into a perfect evil cocktail.

Didn't print out your appointment confirmation sheet? You don't have an appointment.

Don't have your application completely filled out? I can't help you.

Don't have your birth certificate AND social security card AND passport? Don't argue sir, I'm just following the rules.

Don't have not one but two pieces of mail delivered to your home in the past month from an official source bearing your full name? You are just wasting your time.

Didn't find the hen's teeth and a four leaf clover on the scavenger hunt? You really shouldn't be driving any way.

Yes, those are all real responses I heard. Well, almost all of them.

Surprisingly, me, the person who regularly leaves my keys/wallet/sunglasses/baby behind managed to have all the things I needed to complete the process. I felt like I had completed an epic quest as I walked up to the desk for the final paperwork.

The guy helping me was not impressed. In fact, me having all my paperwork in order seemed to make him even angrier. My attempts to smile at him were met with glares, and the two times I asked questions (one being "how are you") he stopped everything he was doing to just stare at me as if I had just asked if I could pound nails through his hand.

When I left I told him to "have a nice day." His response? "It's unlikely, but I appreciate the sentiment."

Yeah.

I think my new driver's license picture sums up my experience.
This is temporary. The real one will be in Technicolor.

Actually, that's not a bad one. The lady next to me actually had fire coming out of her eyes.

Unfortunately that's against the rules, so she has to go back next week...

18 comments:

Summer said...

That's a good picture. I always look confused.

There is no reason for these people to be so damn mean. Um... I would probably be arrested if I had to go through all that guff to get my DL license. Seriously. I hate nasty government workers. Last time I received a speeding ticket, I went to pay it early. The attitude I was met with, forced me to call the woman a nasty, miserable, fat bitch as I concluded my business. The next person in line was terrified of the mood I had put the woman in. It was worth it in my opinion (because my business was concluded).

erin said...

I have to do this whole thing soon and I'm dreading it. Especially since I hate my new haircut. HATE!

C Lo said...

I'd feel bad for you except they managed to make you look 22 in your picture. And I'm kind of jealous.

rockygrace said...

Jeez, I thought Utah was full of friendly Mormons ...

Hippo Brigade said...

birth certificate AND social security card AND passport? Wow. Those Utahians take driving very seriously.

Nicole said...

First, love you. Really. And I don't spend enough time reading your blog, but then, I'm an ass.

Second, the best star I've ever gotten a license in (I've lived in 4 states as a licensed driver), is North Carolina. The process was nearly rational and less than three dog years long. Also? They took my picture and I came off looking like Alyssa Milano, which, as I'm NOT her, was a step up. I almost cried when we left NC and I hadmto give up the glamor shot.

Cindy said...

Bwa ha ha ha ha

makingmonkeysoup.com said...

Since you can no longer smile with teeth, or have your mouth open at all here, I have been seeing all kinds of horrible awful driver's licenses.

I'd like to go live in Arizona for a year, just so I can have my driver's license valid for 25 years. I'd be 62 by the time it would need renewed...

The Vegetable Assassin said...

When I once renewed my US license in NY, I remember this kind of thing well. And I wanted to have a new photo taken as the old one is the bane of my existence but apparently you needed about six official points of ID to do it and I only had five because apparently my UK issued passport and my US issued green card could only count as ONE piece of ID even though they're issued by GOVERNMENTS and different ones at that. WTF? So I could renew my license but not have a new photo. That doesn't even make SENSE. SO I still look like I'm mentally retarded on my license.

They are ALWAYS so mean.

G said...

Maybe these people wouldn't act like jerks if they knew that perhaps someone of influenece in your state legislature would abolish the DMV branches and basically outsource everything.

Anyways, in CT, it has gotten more efficient and a visit to DMV doesn't feel like having your wisdom teeth pulled.

However, it won't last for much longer as they're getting ready to consolidate in a miguided attempt to save money.

Riot Kitty said...

Yeah, you look like deadly laser beams are about to come out of your eyes at the camera man ;)

Sam said...

LOL! That last bit about the lady going back reminds me of the time my mom's license arrived with a little sticker over her face that said something like "Photo Too Ugly For Identification Purposes--Must Retake." While that was funny, the actual photo underneath was really what made me almost pee my pants.

for a different kind of girl said...

You guys are hardcore in the big city! The last time I had to get my license renewed, I strolled into our county satellite office, stepped right up to the counter, gave them no proof of who I was other than my old license, which bore a photo that seriously didn't look like me any longer, and bing, bang, boom (that's not gunfire, btw), I was done in under 10 minutes! Small town livin' has perks! I just hope they're still in place in three years when I have to renew again!

Vapid Vixen said...

If I got anxiety, and I'm not altogether convinced I don't, the DMV would do it for me. I think I've tried them all in the Salt Lake area, the last one being on the state fair grounds off North (?) Temple. *shudder*

Granny Annie said...

Might I suggest clearing out the long lines at the DMV by walking in wearing a Border Patrol or INS cap. Just saying...

mommyodyssey said...

LOL. I think a pre-requisite for getting a job at the DMV is a psychological workup demanding you have a short temper and a penchant for going postal.

Patty O. said...

Wow, it sounds like Utah and Chicago actually have something in common: their DMVs are the worst places on earth.

Glad you managed to get your license. And thanks for the laugh!

BugginWord said...

It took me four trips to get my last license. Also it turns out I need glasses. Hooray for public transit!