....or at least it seemed that way.
Friday at the DMV. We were closed on Thursday for Veteran's Day, so Friday we are getting slammed. And not just slammed, but packed to the gills with zombies who were not lively enough to be in Night of the Living Dead.
You would call a number, and from the great mass you could hear: Uuuhhhrrrmmmm, a little louder than all the other inarticulate noises they were making out there. A walking dead would slowly lurch up to the counter, dropping body parts as they stumbled along. Then, I would spend about 5 minutes trying to drag out of them what they wanted
or why they were here.
But at five minutes to 5 o'clock, I got the core zombie, ground zero for all zombiedom. His license was expiring on Friday, but he had also decided he wanted a chauffer's license, so one of the clerks had given him the written test to complete. But, oh no!, he hadn't passed. The very concept of "not passing" seemed to totally confound him. I did get out of him that he had just been guessing when he answered the questions.
Zombie Boy (ZB): "You make people just take tests without giving them any information to look over?"
Me: (I am not even going to dignify this with a response. I pull out the little brochure from its stand on the counter and hand it to him.)
ZB: (looks around wildly - decisions are so hard) "Can I just stand here and try again?"
Me: "Well, you can step to the side right here (indicating a free spot about one foot away) so I can wait on someone else. Then just let me know when you are finished, and I will take care of you."
This is too difficult for him to grasp. Seemingly, he cannot take a test unless he has someone staring at him, offering him words of encouragement for every question he answers.
Me: "Sir, you can get a chauffer's license, but you must take the test again and pass it. You can renew your regular driver's license. You can wait and come back next week."
ZB: "If I come back next week, how can I drive this weekend?"
Me: "You can't. However, if you renew your regular license today, and come back next week for the chauffer's, you will pay full price twice."
Clearly, judging by the inarticulate moans and groans, I am pushing his brain far beyond its very limited capacity.
ZB: "I need a chauffer's license for my job."
Me: "And you need to pass the test for that first. It is now 5 o'clock. I am afraid I cannot allow you to start another test (actually I could have, but with the slowness with which his brain worked made me rule that one out). Do you want to renew your regular license or come back next week?"
ZB (grindingly slow): "I'll renew the regular license." He tries to hand me a Visa card.
Me: "We don't take Visa. Cash, check, Discover, or Mastercard only."
ZB: "EEErrrrmmmm." He waves at a sign posted. "You take Visa, see?"
Me: "That sign says that we do not
take Visa. See?" I point to where it says that we do not take Visa. "There is an ATM against the back wall, where you can use your Visa."
ZB: "I am not paying a service fee." He stares at me, willing me, daring me to take care of this for him.
Me: "Then have a nice day." I start to move away. This does goad him to some sort of movement. He lumbers over to the ATM, yelling at me to wait for him.
Fail. His card is over limit, and he is back to staring at me.
Me: "Listen, no matter what kind of license you want, you have to pay for it."
ZB: "You don't take Visa!" Yeah, me personally, I have the power to stop Visa.
Me: "Even if I did, your Visa is declined, so how would that do you any good? I can't help you today. You need to come back next week."
ZB: "Can you call my mom to come down here and bring me some money?"
Me: (Ahh, so he does recognize the fact that I am not his real mommy) "We are closed."
ZB: "But I need --."
We are so done here. Me: "You need to bring payment. If you come back next week, you can have time over the weekend to study the chauffer's pamphlet."
That's right, Zombie Boy, your mommy does not work here. You waited until the absolute last minute to care of this, which meant that you have no options. If you had even showed up at 4 pm, when the wait time was 25-30 minutes, you would have been up to the counter and still had 30 minutes to look over the chauffer's pamphlet and run out to your bank across the street.