Thing 5: You Are Always Wrong At The BMV (And That’s How They Like It)

Why is it that every time you walk into the BMV (Bureau of Motor Vehicles) you instantly feel as if you are doing something wrong? The BMV is a place that people go to get help and where young adults gain the keys to their first taste of freedom. We should be excited every time that we enter the BMV, if not just due to the fact that they allowed me my freedom of driving when I was just a young 15 year old. They sparked the most formative of teenage years for almost every person in the United States, yet we all feel such disdain for that place. What went wrong?

Well let’s examine this piece by piece to figure out the problem. I think that the first place to start is the first thing that you notice when you walk in…

The Look

In recent years, the BMV has made major changes in it’s aesthetic quality. I remember when I got my license, also I remember the tetanus shot that I like I needed right after leaving the BMV. The walls were grey and the floor was that old tile that you find in most public school cafeterias and gym floors.

The shine comes from human tears

Luckily, the government spent a little of our weekly paycheck in order to make the look of the BMV something that people can be proud of. I will admit, when you walk into the BMV at first, there is always some hope that maybe this time, just maybe, it will be different. I mean, this place looks clean and inviting now so the people that work there have to be relieved that they finally got to leave the prison cell they worked in and finally work in a place that looks appealing.

Well, it isn’t the look that is the issue at the BMV. So lets move on to the next step.

The Process

When it comes to knowing what to do in the BMV, I think everyone is on the same level playing field. You walk in, grab a number, and wait until the lady behind the counter calls for it. Overall, this is one of the most seamless parts of the whole process.

Very simple. Very efficient.

The only thing that you can really nitpick about this is that the seats are uncomfortable. It isn’t really anything to complain about because you really don’t have to sit for too long. In the even that you did though, the plastic chairs could really make you uncomfortable (especially when you have to sit on your wallet). That is a nitpick though and really does not derail the whole process of going to the BMV. It is only a minor problem in a very specific and uncommon situation, so i don’t count it against the overall score of the BMV visit.

Once you have been sitting there, the woman calls your name, sometimes in the most inaudible voice possible, then continues to get louder until she is visibly upset with whoever is going to sit across from her.

You have been pre-judged

Things seem to be taking a turn from here. Which leads to…

The People (or just the one you get to deal with)

So far, we have made it into the BMV and even waited patiently for our turn at the desk without issue. We are almost done and we feel like this might be a new BMV. This might be what we have been searching for!

Alas, here is where it hits rock bottom. You get the counter and the lady always has a look like she wants to get put down due to the fact that she hates her job that much. At this point, you need some sort of help and these people seem to think that they are in the business of being vague and uninformative. Everything you need that isn’t immediately presented with a smile is greeted with a look that makes the cold shoulder rethink how much of a dick it’s been all these years. Every answer that you give that isn’t exactly right is met with a heavy sigh and a head down, eye’s over the glasses stare.

How dare you not know what government paperwork you should have in order to take care of something that you have never done or have any information about? Are you dense? If the world’s smartest man came into the BMV, he would leave that place feeling as demoralized as Lindsay Lohan’s alcohol sponsor.

This is it. We have found the reason that the BMV is the most demoralizing place in the world. It’s the soylent green.

Not only are you clueless and looking for help when you go in, but you have to put up with someone who has something better to do than help you solve your problem. The best part about it is they always have  a little flower sticker or smiley face on their name tag that only gives you false hope.

I do understand a little and give the benefit of the doubt to these people sometimes because they have to deal with a lot of stupid people every day. My only problem with that is that they take it out on everyone. Yeah, I have had bad days, but I got over it. This is a chip on the shoulder of every BMV worker. They think everyone is stupid, but they confuse stupidity with ignorance. They are not the same thing.

People come here for help. They don’t want to be here so pissing them off is only going to make your job worse.

So all the BMV workers out there need to hear that we get it. We understand your job has to suck. I would hate to put up with idiots all day, but your job is to help the ignorant. Government paperwork can be confusing and a bit overwhelming for a lot of people. So stop being pricks and try to help. You are not making it any better for yourselves by making us miserable. You be nice or helpful  during a tough situation and you might be surprised how much better your job can get.

If you show your customer some respect most of us will usually return the favor.


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