Yesterday was the type of day where I woke up and was ready to demolish my “long term to do list”. You know the list I’m talking about. You have one too. It’s the list that you keep seeing the same god damn thing on it for months until finally you surrender to it and give into actually getting that shitty thing done. The number one thing on my long term list is/was to renew my license. Now that I have it all sorted out and taken care of, I can admit now that I was driving on an expired license for quite some time. Go ahead, judge away, I don’t care. I will have you know that I originally went to the DMV the moment it expired, however, I was alerted of a past unpaid ticket that put a hold on me actually obtaining a valid driver’s license. With that being said, I went home, hunted down said ticket and eventually paid my super duper late fine. Fast forward nine months later:
This particular Tuesday was not like any other Tuesday. I woke up to teach yoga and workout, but I also was preparing to head downtown to the Office of The Illinois Secretary of State at the Thompson Center, also known at the good old fucking fashion DMV. I know I’m not the only one that needs an internal pep talk to go there – hence the nine month delay in going back to renew my license. However, I was actually really excited to take my new photo as I’m no longer blonde anymore. I actually took a shower (as a full time yoga teacher, I don’t get to do that often), I blew dry my hair, put on at least seven coats of mascara and threw on my favorite summer dress. It’s forest green, off the shoulders, and it makes my eyes pop so of course this was my go-to new license photo frock. I hopped in an Uber pool and took my ass to The Loop to get shit done. I was under the impression that I would be in and out within the hour as I had all tickets and prior situations totally taken care of. I was good to go. This was me:
I arrived and there were approximately twenty people in line and perhaps forty people seated waiting to be called. No panic here as I had all the proper documents needed and my license was clear for takeoff. In other words, there was nothing holding me back from getting my new plastic. Into the dark abyss of the line I went. The line was actually two lines divided by one of those retractable belts. About ten minutes in, a little boy innocently undid the belt. One would think Mom would have taken the belt and replaced it back where it came from, but instead, mom and company dispersed and turned two lines into their own “line” of one big group. It was now me against the five of them – side note: I was there first and when it comes to lines I’ve been standing in, I don’t mess around. A little bit of eye contact and a “don’t fuck with my spot” look, they were left in my dust as I made my way to the front of the line. With my documents handed over and a number for the waiting area issued, I took a seat to what I think was in the waiting room for Hell.
Surprisingly I was called upon somewhat swiftly. It definitely looked worse than it was. WOOOOOO-fucking-HOOO I thought to myself. In and out. In and out. We got this. I approach Counter 2 where again I issue all documents expecting quick transactions and motions to the next line. Time out. A vision test. Ummm, ok. I was then guided to place my forehead onto a plastic chin and head rest where, I kid you not, there was more oil and grease than a Little Caesar’s Pizza. No sanitary wipe in sight, I took a shopping bag I had on hand and used that as a barrier between my forehead and the rest of Chicago’s. Alas, I passed the vision test. My new license here I come!!!!
Not so fast.
Teller: Ok, you’ll need to head over there for a written drivers test.
Ummmmm, I’m sorry. Come again?
Teller: Yeah. You need to take the test.
Me: The test? Why?
Teller: Because it says here that you have some notes on your record.
Me: What kind of notes?
Teller: A ticket….looks like some accident.
Me: The accident when the lady totaled my car back in 2012?
Teller: Yep, that would be the one.
Over to the cashier I go. $30 cash. Not too bad for a new license. After my payment was made, I was told to step to the next line to take my test. Let it be known that I had no freaking clue that I would be taking a written driving test. I was a tid bit nervous given the fact that I haven’t taken any type of test, besides pregnancy tests, for ages. The nice woman hands me a red pen and a three page test (fucking phew, thought it was going to be like ten pages deep) and says with a smile, “nothing on your desk besides your pen and test, good luck!” I found a seat which literally was a desk, again haven’t been in one of those in thirteen years, so that was actually kind of exciting. The first two pages were multiple choice – a breeze. Then I got to the third page. Ummmm you guys, here’s the deal. When I see a sign on the road I know what to do and try my damn hardest to obey accordingly. But when said signs obtain zero words and are represented strictly by only color and shapes:
After saying, “what the fuck?” somewhat out loud at least ten times, I made some guesses and finished up the pop quiz. I walked up to the lady and watched as she said “good job” to all of my multiple choice questions, but when she finally got to the signs….. well basically she said this:
I’m a huge loser. I literally failed my driver’s test. Shock and embarrassment immediately set in. She asked if I’d like to retake. Well, obviously. Can’t drive without a license, albeit valid or not. I asked for a new test and she told me I would have to go back in line. I repeat, back….to the back….of the first line I encountered about an hour and a half ago. Back to Hell.
Holy shit. I did what I was told and went back to the back of the line to the darkest depths of hell. After many minutes I got to the front of the line, again, and unsuccessfully pretty much offered the dude some cash money to not make me wait again. No can do, he said. Fuck. Back to the waiting room I went with my new ticket, number F650. I took a seat and studied for my quiz when a nice nurse lady sat next to me. Holy smokes people, do not judge a book by it’s cover. You do not want to be on this lady’s bad side. She was throwing massive shade left and right. At one point she gave some woman the stink eye and to herself she muttered, “mm, mm, nope. She looks like she’s full of ticks and fleas.”
And that ladies and gentlemen was verbatim. I mean, why would she even say something like that? Was that flea lady sitting in my seat prior to me? Am I know filled with ticks and fleas? Is it because she’s a nurse and she knows what a person who has ticks and fleas looks like? WTF?!!? She must have felt my reaction because she turned to me and said, “mmhhhhhmmmm.”
Announcement: Taking F650, please come to Counter 9.
My brain: Oh my thank fucking god!!!!!!
(Literally running to Counter 9 I give all my documents to the teller.)
Me: Hi, I’m a huge loser and failed my written test.
(And that’s about the time I tuned into the lady being helped next to me. This is how their conversation went.)
Teller: Would you like to be an organ donor?
Lady: Heeeeell no.
(*insert me judging her and thinking of all the lives that can saved.)
Teller: Would you like to become a registered voter?
Lady: No. We’re all going to die.
Now at this point I had had enough, but in a fucked up, sociological way, I was beginning to secretly enjoy my day at the DMV. I finally made it to the very front of the line, again, to retake my test when the security guard put a halt to the line and announced that she was letting a Chicago Police Officer go to the front of the line to take care of his business. I didn’t think twice about it, didn’t care. I knew I was mere moments away of finishing this all up when someone about three people behind me started to complain about a cop cutting in line. Yes, you read that right. He was pissed about the cop cutting and then began to voice his opinion about deeply rooted, Chicago, heavy shit clearly pertaining to the relationships between the CPD and the people of the city. And then this was me:
I care, I really truly do. But mind you though, I hadn’t even taken my second test yet, I had been at the DMV now for almost 2.5 hours and I was LITERALLY stuck smack dab in the middle of fightin’ words. Nope, thanks. Finally, I got my new test – pass! I honestly would have given up my right to drive if I failed again. I was told to finally go get my new photo taken. By the end of this ordeal, this was me:
The fucking end.
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