I have to renew my driver’s license. I don’t need the new Federal version because we aren’t going anywhere and in theory, you can get a “standard” license that won’t let you get on an airplane after May 2023, but that’s a long time off. I doubt I’m every getting on another airplane. If I can’t drive there, we ain’t going.

But they won’t let you not get it because no matter how many times you click “standard license” it jumps back to Federal license. I called the number they sent. No one answered. I was on hold for hours. At 5pm, I gave up. No one was home at the Registry of Motor Vehicles.

I figured I’d better get my paperwork in order. Except we can’t find our birth certificates and our passports expired four years ago. Well, so it goes. I don’t want or need the Federal “REAL” driver’s license (Note: That’s what they call the license — the REAL license) but they are making me get it anyway.


Since I am trapped by paperwork, I figured I’d order a birth certificate because no one will believe I was born without one. Better make that two — one for me, one for Garry.

It turns out — if you were born in New York city — the only person who can order a birth certificate is the individual who’s certificate it is — or his mother or father. His parents are long gone and Garry’s exactly a whiz at computers. I will have to pretend to be Garry. Which isn’t difficult online — and order one. If only the actual individual can order his or her own birth certificate (or his long deceased parents), what happens if he dies? His parents are gone and I’m not his mother or father — so what then?

I figured okay, I’ll order mine and we’ll deal with Garry’s later. But I must have filled in a box wrong because they wanted more identification. I answered their stupid ID questions — but I must have answered another one wrong, probably the one about Worcester. I think they meant the city of Worcester, but we live in Worcester County, so I said “yes,” but I I should have said no. They obviously don’t know Worcester the city is in Worcester the county. They don’t live around here.

So the obscure ID questions were not enough either. More documents? What documents? Oh, okay. They want proof of citizenship which would be great if I were a naturalized citizen, but I was born here and they don’t give you naturalization paper unless your were naturalized. Alternatively, they will accept a utility bill. All my utility bills are electronic. They don’t accept electronic copies of electronic bills.

I’m beginning to drool and gibber.

The birth certificate replacement company won’t send it because I don’t have the right ID and I can’t get the ID because I don’t have the birth certificate. Duh.

All of this is so I can get a license I neither need nor want. If I die, Garry will need my birth certificate and probably our marriage certificate which is also missing. I better order everything because they won’t let him get it, especially if I’m dead.

Am I allowed to die if I don’t have the right ID? Does death require identification papers?

Meanwhile, back at medical insurance, Blue Cross wants us to pay them. It’s just for this month. From March onward, it will be deducted from Social Security. I can’t pay them until I set up web IDs for both of us and I have to wait until I get the paperwork from BlueCross with our ID and account numbers. Lord of mercy.

Who says a computer isn’t a necessity? Who says wi-fi is a luxury? I defy you to survive without both.

I think I have spent more time on hold this month than I have writing posts for this blog. I’m losing my shit. Isn’t this the kind of stuff they do to you to make you a crazed assassin? If not, why not?

Categories: Anecdote, Government, UPDATE!

Tags: , , , , ,

11 replies

  1. You poor thing. 😀 😀


    • This is a classic Massachusetts thing. They make you run in circles until you are ready to scream and THEN they change the rules, though since most of these rules of Federal, that may not happen this time. You will still need a birth certificate to get any official identification, Federal OR state. And since mine doesn’t come from this state and I have to not only deal with Massachusetts’s craziness, but whacked out New York nuttiness, I’m doubly damned. But at least now I know what I need to do. Next, I have to find or order our wedding certificate. I’m hoping we just manage to FIND it. Because ordering it will add even MORE weeks to this process and I won’t be able to drive at all until I finish this mess. At least I’m ordering Garry and Owen’s paperwork now so they won’t have the same problem I’m having — and they never changed their names.

      So of course, it’s WOMEN who get most of the problems because we change our names.


  2. In Florida, you can renew your license by mail. Unless someone in another state mixes up D/L numbers and you receive a letter from Florida DMV that your license is being revoked due to an infraction in the state of PA. I was on the phone with PA (I’ve not been there in over 50 years!!), then had to send them all kinds of ID to prove I was me (I am!), plus send a notarized letter telling them their info is wrong. Craziest thing ever. Eventually I had what I needed to go downtown, in person, to get my license. But then I was charged again and had to write a letter to the state to request a refund.
    It’s nuts all over the place, Marilyn. Good luck to you and Garry.


    • I think you may be surprised next time you have to renew. The rules were changed by Trump. I used to renew my license online. It took five minutes, start to finish. These are the new FEDERAL rules and this is why they are so objectionable. However difficult this is for me, if you don’t own a computer and you have to get all this paperwork from other states, how do you get it done? I can and will — but there are a lot of poor people who don’t have computers OR the money to get online and order the paperwork.

      THIS is what the fighting is all about and this is what people will have to do to get any kind of legal ID so they can drive, fly, and VOTE. Make sure you have all your paperwork. You will need it. The laws have been changed.


  3. OMG, if that isn’t the definition of a “catch 22” I don’t know what is!!


    • I keep telling people — this is going to happen to EVERYONE eventually as each state mandates these new Federal rules. You won’t be able to get legal ID or vote if you don’t have your birth certificate and some kind of document if you changed your name by marriage or for any other reason.

      Liked by 1 person

      • You are so right. And now even WP is doing it. I am logged in and tried to click the “Like” button on this comment of yours and WP is asking me to login, even though I already am. Great post Marilyn.


  4. My license is due to renew this year. After reading this, I’m not looking forward to a process that I never looked forward to anyway.


    • Just make sure you have your birth certificate, a marriage certificate if you changed your name when you married and it is different than that on your birth certificate. This may finally convince women to NOT change their names. You have a year to get it done. Do not do what I did and wait until the last minute. Get the papers in order now, while you aren’t in a hurry. You’ll be glad you did.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I’m beginning to hate governments. ALL government. Maybe I’ll become an anarchist. I asked Garry toward the end of the evening if we were going to need a license to die and he said “Yes.” Massachusetts. We just can’t do anything the easy way.

      Liked by 1 person

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