Writing At The DMV

No, I haven’t completely lost my mind. I needed to get a history of my driving record for a potential client. I have done this before and it was simple: stand in the Information line, hand the person $20 and my license when it was my turn, get the report, and leave. Depending on how long the Information is, this takes a half hour, tops.

Then they changed the system (Cue horror music).

So today I stood in the Information line for about a half hour. It was kind of fun. We the line people formed a bond complaining about the bureaucracy known as the DMV. There was the guy behind me trying to register his eighth boat. “I know there is another line after this but I couldn’t pay the dealer four hundred bucks just to register her.” I offered my condolences with number eight.

The guy in front of me just got back from the Middle East with the Marines. After thanking him for his service he explained that Connecticut is the only state that operates this way. “Every other state you can do most of this stuff on line or if you need to come in person they have terminals you punch your information in so by the time you get to the clerk, everything is practically done.” If anyone should be able to cut this line, this guy should. Hasn’t he done enough for our country?

Interesting concept.

Back to me – so I get to the Information Desk and they hand me a “Express Number”. Whoa – I’ll be quick. No – another half hour passes. The guy next to me, from Massachusetts, urges me to go back up. “There is no line now. Why can’t they just get you out of here?” Logical.

But – no.

The Information Clerk explains that she can do nothing except give directions. I wonder if they based the new DMV model on Starbucks. Think about it – when one enters Starbucks there is a line. You submit your order and then watch one barista go crazy trying to keep up while the cashier, manager, and others stand around and chat.

I left and came back about three hours later. The Information Desk gave another Express Number and currently I type this as I wait to hear those magical notes.

Since the DMV is one of the few great equalizers left in our society, there are many different classes of people present yet the prominent conversation is about the way this department is run. I’m taken back by the same conversation repeated amongst the different groups.

Few are engrossed with their phones. Most are pointing and commenting. This is actually getting good. Oh – there is my number. It took exactly three minutes to complete my transaction once I was at the counter. There has got to be a better way.

Maybe I should write at the DMV more often?

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