Good question that, and a definitely stumbling block in my efforts to prove that I am indeed me, as opposed to not-me, yesterday afternoon.
It was time, by Pennsylvania law, for me to get a new photo for my driver’s license. After I had paid the fee for same and received the physical copy in the mail, I had 30 days to go to one of the state locations where that could be done officially. Conveniently enough, one such location is a five minute drive from my humble abode.
It was mid-morning and the place was empty at 10:15 aside from the two ladies at the counter where the actual work is done and the cop, or at least a guy dressed in a cop-like uniform, sitting on a stool at the entrance. I’d been here before and they were the same people as they had been two or four or whatever number of years previous.
I don’t know how to do thing without getting into some superficial descriptions, so bear with me. The person at counter who does that which must be done (deals with the applicant, takes the photo, makes the license) is a large black woman. Next to her is a somewhat frazzled white woman who, as best I can recall from a previous visit since she did nothing on the visit, somehow helps the process along when things get busy. The cop on stool is cool, smiling and looks very much like some famous character actor I cannot bring to mind.
Even though I was the only applicant, the lady in charge insisted that I take a numbered ticket from a machine at the door before she would help me. “they say you have to take a ticket, you have to take a ticket,” she said. I presented my old and outdated license and was told to move to the side and use an electronic sign-in pad to sign in.
“That’s not your signature,” she said. I tried again. No luck. Two more tries. She called me back in front of her and showed me my old license. “That’s your signature,” she said. Honestly, my signature is but a scrawled scratch which has no relationship to actual handwriting. I tried three times to reproduce the one she had. No luck.
“Look at me,” I finally said. “You have the picture on my old license. Isn’t that me?” That’s when she asked the question that I used as the title for this post (and when I also realized she was just playing with me…maybe).
I suggested showing her other items with my signature, all the credit cards and the like in my wallet. “You don’t know how to sign your own name,” she said finally. “Okay, sign it the way you want and I’ll put down that you changed your signature.” I apologized for being such a problem when she finally handed over the approved license. She said no sweat, “I had people who threatened to beat me up.” No sweat, I said back, “you’re too big for me to handle.” She looked up. “You don’t want to say that to a lady.” The cop at door damned near fell off his stool laughing.
There’s no point to all this aside from the fact that it was about as much fun as I’ve had so far this week.
Plus also, “evil twin brother?” Too cool.