-Cancelled old insurance. Couldn't renew, because GEICO will not insure cars in MA. Only state in the union they won't insure cars in. Hmm, maybe they were onto something?
-Searched for a new insurance carrier. Turns out AAA will not only tow your car and give you neat shiny stickers, they'll also parasitically sell you insurance. Oh you're a member? Here's a coupon for a $0.32 discount - every six months!
-L spent some time on the phone with an agent, and then later in that week in person to get all the forms filled out. Oh - no, sorry, she can't buy insurance for the car because I'm on the registration. Thank you Massachusetts, otherwise people would be out buying each other insurance willy nilly. And then where would that leave us? In chaos.
-L and I set out one morning to get the insurance process complete. We visited the AAA office in Peabody and were told it was going to be 'at least an hour and then that guy's in front of you'.
-We visit the Saugus branch instead. A nice lady named Maria helped us out. The process took about two hours, I ended up somehow renewing my AAA membership so that it expires earlier than it would have had I not renewed, I think I lost a kidney and I'm getting lots more telemarketer calls now. But we have a policy. For our car. In Massachusetts. We are told to register the car in the state within 7 days, get an insurance inspection within 7 days, and a safety inspection within 10 days. That's right, two different inspections. But don't worry, says Maria, there are places that will do BOTH! Yes, there are two of those places, one's in the whale tank at the aquarium and the other is located on a randomly selected subway car or bus, changed daily.
-Moving on. The closest RMV to my work is in Chinatown. I had no idea how far away this was for real, but luckily it is located on the T. Neat for me. They have really convenient hours for the working man/woman, from 10am to 11:15am on Wednesday.
-I set out to accomplish the registration during my lunch hour. I figured it would take a little longer, but I could make up the time (writing this blog entry). I managed to find the building, discovering in the process that the orange line runs approximately once an hour. Convenient. My tax dollars at work. I had already filled out the MVU-29 form (waiver for sales tax - sidenote - what the hell? when during this process did a purchase anything? assholes. /sidenote) and the insurance lady filled out the RMV-1 (proof of insurance, and you know it's important 'cause it's #1), I had my ME registration and the title number for my car, which technically the bank still owns.
-I am helped within 5 minutes of arriving. I use the term 'helped' loosely
pleasantly surprised by the alacrity of service. Within 30 seconds of my arrival, my enthusiasm wanes. Actual conversation:
Bitch behind counter: Why does the registration only say you, but the form says you and L?
Bitch in front of counter (that's me): I don't know. I think because I went by myself to register it in Maine.
BBC: Well we can't do that.
BFC: Can't do what?
BBC: Process this.
BBC: The names aren't the same.
BFC: I see that. But I can't change the old registration.
BBC: Then you'll have to have the insurance company change the form.
BFC: But she's a co-owner and the primary driver.
BBC: She's not on the form.
At this point the
BBC2: The names need to match.
BFC: Well I can't change the registration.
BBC2: Then you need to change the form, or provide proof of ownership for the second name.
--editor's note- I'm condensing TWO visits to the counter into one, for whatever brevity is left--
BFC: But here's the loan information, she's on that.
BBC2: We don't care about that. We need to see the title.
BFC: Can you have it faxed to you?
BBC2: YOU can have it faxed.
At this point, really, I'm seeing mostly red. It has seriously been a two week process to get here, and obviously I've wasted my time. Not to mention the valuable time of the exemplary public servants at the RMV, who could have been using the time to berate some other tax payer. I attempt to get the title faxed, but the office where the title is located is closed Wednesdays at 1pm for the day. (By the way, it's 1:30pm) Surprisingly, no luck here.
This is a long, and annoying, post, so I'd like to summarize a number of things that made me most angry:
-The disconnect between the people who create the forms/procedures, etc. and the people who execute them. No one could tell me why the state needs to know who registered the car previously. Obviously, they've been instructed that all their paperwork should be THIS WAY, and not to accept anything else. Even if some other documentation can be shown to prove the same thing. There's no room for alternate methods.
-The website has no indication that any sort of title information (besides the number and lienholder) is required.
-The reps were rude. I realize the reason they acted as if they just wanted me to go away was because, well, they just wanted me to go away, but I thought they were providing a service to the public. If it's required that we do certain things, the people who assist in that capacity should be interested in helping you complete the thing. I was probably a little rude back, but screw it. They're probably writing their own blog entry at imanasshole.blogspot.com
-There was no consideration for the fact that I wasted about two hours of my time. Mother effers. I wish I worked in some field where our paths would cross, and I could be really petty and send them on a wild goose chase for about 6 months. Screw it, I'll just flatten all their car tires.
Anyway, I have to get a copy of the title and do this all over again tomorrow. So far I'm 0-2 at registering the car, let's hope I can pick it up and go 1-3. If I don't succeed, there will be a neat segment on Fox News about rising license plate theft on the North Shore. Are your plates safe?