So, It Turns Out I’m the Incompetent Person at the Secretary of State’s

People, I have to tell you a story, in part because the kind folks in line at the Secretary of State’s office promised me that it would be funny to anyone I told. So, here it is.

I go to get my tags. I stand in line. I let a nice gentleman use my pen. I avoid all small talk. I go up to the window, I turn over the items needed to get new tags. I come out. I go to the first silver car in our row, which, when I went in, was my car. I put my tags on the plate. I go to get in it only to realize that it’s not my car.

I try to take the tags off. One comes off fine. The other breaks into pieces.

I have to go back into the Secretary of State’s office. Everyone in line turns to look. They all recognize me, because I have literally just walked out of there three minutes before. I shrug and say, “I put my tags on the wrong car.”

The guy in front of me starts to snicker.

His girlfriend says, “It is pretty funny.”

“I feel like a dumbass,” I say.

“Oh, don’t worry, sweetie,” the woman in front of her says. “It’s not like anyone saw you.”

“My brother did,” I say.

The guy with the neck tattoo laughs out loud now. “And he didn’t stop you? That’s cold.”

I go back up to the window, explain what happened and the woman hooked me right back up with a new set of tags after I wrote out an affidavit explaining my dumbassery.

Again, I say, “I feel like a dumbass.”

“Oh no,” she said, “that happens all the time.”

“I don’t know if that makes me feel better or worse about the state of things in Nashville.”

When I get back out to the car, the Butcher apologizes for not quite realizing what I was doing until it was too late. Then he says that when the old couple whose car it was got out there, the old guy was laughing, “We weren’t even here to get tags.”

Edited to Add: Someone, who shall remain nameless (cough*tinypasture*cough) just emailed me to remind me that here in Tennessee we get our tags from the county clerk, not the secretary of state. I’m glad there’s no citizenship test to renew your tags or my ass would be kicked out.

12 thoughts on “So, It Turns Out I’m the Incompetent Person at the Secretary of State’s

  1. If it makes you feel better, I’m totally laughing WITH you.

    Now I know your car, and I happen to know that it’s a very popular model in a popular color and I can see you being distracted and putting your tags on someone else’s plate.But if what the clerk says is true, and it really DOES happen all the time… I’m not sure what that says about this great state of ours.

    Also, I’m curious as to what the Butcher THOUGHT you were doing behind someone else’s car as you applied the stickers. Did he think you were just comparing them or what? …Of course, I KNOW what his excuse is. ;)

  2. He thought they must have had something strange going on with their car that I was trying to figure out. He said it was only when he heard me say “Fuck” that he realized what had happened.

  3. I just want to know how that car moved your car out of its spot. I thought your car could stand its ground better than that.

  4. I can totally see myself doing that.

    It makes me glad that the stickers are mailed to us here in California, so there is no possibility of confusion.

  5. Man, Hargett would totally win any feud we had. He’d just distract me with something awesome from the State Library and then drop a voting machine on me. I’d be like the wicked witch of the east.

  6. Okay, now I’m really glad they go inside the windshield here because I’d totally do that(small white pick-up,tho’ it’s much dirtier than all the others. Still really hard to find if I don’t think when I park it.)

    I put it on immediately anyway, which lead to the year of it being half stuck on because I dropped it on the dirt covered floor between peeling off the backing and putting it on. Sigh….

  7. this is the exact reason I am glad I have a tag bearing the logo of the college from which I graduated. Well worth the money – and the reduction of shame. I do dumbass shit like that all the time. Hilarious!

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