Department of Masochist Vehicles

Ever since the Diamondbacks game last August 11 I have been waiting for my car tags to expire so that I could order a new Arizona Diamondbacks license plate. The plates finally became available last month. It was a week too late for Trina’s car to be included but my car came due today. I had been eagerly awaiting the renewal notice so that I had the information necessary to order the plates. Every day I would go to the mail box hoping to find a letter from the Arizona Department of Transportation. What a strange situation. Never in a million years would I have ever imagined that I would actually look forward to my car license to expire. Still that is the situation I now found myself in. Every day I would come back from the mail box depressed to find that the renewal notice had not arrived. I was starting to get a little nervous since I knew that my tags expired today and I had not heard anything. As much as I dreaded it, it looked as though I would have to make a phone call to the Department of Motor Vehicles or worse have to go visit a DMV office.

I decided to start with the lesser of two evils, a phone call. After a quick Google search I found the phone number and called. After 3 menus worth of information I was finally connected to a human. Hey, maybe this would not be so bad. When the young lady answered I explained my situation that I had not received a renewal notice for my car tags and they were due today. I also stated that I wanted to order an Arizona Diamondbacks plate. The customer service representative was very polite and helpful and suggested I renew online. Wow, this just keeps getting better. After taking note of the URL I thanked the woman for all of her help and hung up. This was going to be sweet I thought. I opened a browser and went to the web site. After clicking on the link for license renewal I was asked for a record number and the last two digits of my VIN. Wait, I don’t have a record number since I didn’t get a renewal notice in the mail. The DMV had thought of that and had an alternative. I was asked for my license number and last 2 digits of my VIN. After entering the data I clicked on the continue button.

Record not found

What do you mean record not found? I went back to the form and tried again and received the same error message. I again went back to the input form and carefully entered the data making sure it was correct. After clicking the continue button I received the same error message. What is up with that? I grabbed the phone dialed the customer service number. After a 10 minute wait I got another customer service representative. I explained my problem and was told I would need a level 2 support person. Cool, I was making headway. The representative stated that she would transfer me. The wait would be 20 minutes. The phone immediately went dead. I dialed back in and went through the steps again. This time the wait would be 28 minutes. During this time I would be entertained by hold music. Not just any hold music; I got a montage of songs from the early 1960’s all with the theme of pain and frustration. That will do wonders for your outlook and phone etiquette. When I finally reached the end of my hold time another customer service rep appeared on the phone and asked how they could assist. I again explained my plight and was told I could renew online. I wanted to scream. I explained that I tried to renew on line but the record was not found. The representative gave me my renewal record number and I was told that would be all I would need. She hung up and I rushed to the computer to complete this transaction. I navigated to the web site and entered the data I was given.

Record not found

I wanted to scream. This was like watching Armando Reynoso pitch a game. You knew no matter how well it started it would end 4.5 hours later and your blood pressure would be redlined. I tried to call back to the DMV but the wait now was nearly an hour. I had no choice but to go down to the DMV office and deal with this. I approached the receptionist and explained my situation. She was very helpful and printed out information I would need once my number was finally called. I felt like the characters in Beetlejuice where my number was in the millions and they had just called number 3. Although it was probably only 15 minutes it felt like hours. I began to realize that you could probably make a very good living if you hired yourself out to be a designated line sitter at the DMV. I would have gladly paid someone to wait for me. When I finally got to the window; a surly woman with minimal personal hygiene experience grunted in my direction. For the twentieth time I explained my situation and for the twentieth time I was told that I could renew my license on-line. They should have shirts made up with that answer. I explained that I couldn’t do that because the record was not found. I handed Mavis the papers that were printed for me. She went ballistic yelling at me that I was not supposed to have those papers. You would have thought I had just brought in radioactive plutonium and placed it on her desk. For 5 minutes I listened to her freaking out at me. Finally she ran out of breath and there was a break so that I could respond. I explained that the receptionist was just trying to help by giving me the data I would need to complete the transaction. I now realized that whatever time savings I would have realized were now gone due to me having to explain this again. I was starting to lose my patience just a little and went on to tell the woman that I was still frustrated that I didn’t get a renewal notice. She stated that a renewal notice was just a courtesy and that not everyone was given that courtesy. I have no idea what planet she was originally from but I explained that here on Mother Earth we needed to get a bill so that we knew how much we needed to pay. Something must have gotten lost in the translation as she just stared blankly at me. After a couple rounds of stare down between us she finally blinked and reached for her keyboard. She entered the information from the sheet that was provided by the helpful receptionist. She then got a very puzzled look on her face then responded, “Your record is not found”. I think I was quickly reaching the point of spontaneous combustion. With all of the patience that I could muster I asked if perhaps she could find my record. This seemed to be a very difficult question and one that she had to ponder. Finally she went to get help. After several minutes they found the problem. My car license was attached to two cars. No one has any idea how this happened and most of the workers at the DMV were not even positive that it could be done. After an hour they finally got it figured out. They seemed pretty proud of their accomplishment but that feeling quickly disappeared when I stated that I needed to change license plates to the new Diamondbacks plate. That resulted in another conference at the mound and a couple of pitching changes. In the end I had to fill out a line-up card. They took my old plate, gave me a temporary plate that I will never be able to remember the number to, and then stated that I should receive my new personalized Diamondbacks plate within the next 4-6 weeks. I told them I would be sure to hold my breath waiting for that to happen then I left frustrated that I had just lost 4 hours of my life that I would never get back. Oh the things we do to show our support for the Arizona Diamondbacks.

1 Comment

  1. Note to Self

    Ever since it was announced that there would be an Arizona Diamondbacks license plate I have been eager to order one to show my support for the team. When our annual renewal period for our right-wing, gas-guzzling, environmentally-irresponsible Chevrol…

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