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Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Bored? Why Not Try Trouble?

Took Mo to her six month follow-up with her neurologist. This meant leaving work early to spend most of the afternoon driving to and fro. I didn't want to do it, and neither did the kid.

She did wear her hat from the circus a year or two ago. It's the cheap felt top hat that came with exorbitantly overpriced cotton candy, the flimsiest novelty item I've ever seen in my life (and I worked over ten years in the ad specialties industry, so that's saying something). This shoddy piece of crap is the longest-lived item Mo has ever possessed. She got lots of compliments on it, too.

On the way to the appointment, she found a ball point pen in the car and tattooed her legs but good. Then, when she saw wet wipes on the desk of the person who checked us in, she proceeded to obsessively scrub almost all the ink off in the waiting room (impressive, I didn't think it'd work). But these amusements didn't hold her.

'No! No!' She'd holler. Sometimes she yells 'no' when she's thinking about doing something that will inspire me to shout, 'No!'

At one point, while we were waiting, I asked her, 'Are you shouting 'no' because you feel like getting in trouble?'

She looked at me as if amazed at my insight and said, clearly, 'Yes.'

That's okay, kid, sometimes I feel like getting in trouble, too.

Like later, when I stopped in at the DMV to renew my tags. The wait was worse than usual because, I gathered, all the 30 day dealer tags from the Cash for Clunkers spree were coming due.

But they've added a cool new feature to make me less inclined to try finding trouble. You can avoid a cranky DMV worker and punch your cell into a touch screen. You get a text message saying how many people are ahead of you and how long you're likely to wait.

135 minutes is a long time. I figured I could get Mo back to her Mom's and be back long before I was called. This is a huge improvement over taking a cryptic number from two or three apparently random series. Because with that system, you can't tell, could be nine guys ahead of you or ninety.

When I returned, my wait was estimated at a mere 67 minutes. Being able to send a text with 'S' as its content to get updated on this periodically was comforting. I was still stuck, the wait was still inexcusably long, and I was still in the DMV (which should install pool tables and a bar if it's not going to hire enough people to handle the workload). But at least I had some idea how long I was to endure this circle of hell.

Next year, I swear, I'm renewing online. I usually don't because I usually don't renew on time. I was going to renew on time this year, I just lost the thing they mailed me with the PIN to do it online. And I didn't figure I could trust my bike rack to obscure the month on my tag forever. With the bike on, it's almost impossible to see, but something tells me I might get pulled over sometime in February just for driving around with a bike on a rack in a snow storm.

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