b r e a t h i n g
r o o m
10 Dec 97
Now I have to wait four to five weeks for my new car. I put down a deposit today. Just got my December royalties yesterday, less than I had hoped for, and we'll be borrowing the rest of the downpayment from B's folks when the time comes. It was all very anticlimactic. Once again they made me shake management's hand before leaving ("I'm going to get Paul out here to thank you for your order, him or Adam"), and they tried to put a good face on the wait: you'll be getting a custom-made car. Is that good? This is all very new to me, and somewhat unreal. I suppose it will become more real around January 14 or so, and $200 more real every month thereafter for the next five years.
There was something else I intended to do by birthday this year and that was renew my driver's license. I've been driving around for the duration of this journal on an expired license, only today stepping into the DMV. Naturally, I had washed my hair today and it was looking flat and wispy. I'm supposedly a good driver so all they did was test my vision. With my glasses on it's pretty dang good. The people working at the DMV on Claremont in Oakland were cheerful and relaxed, except when the woman snapping the photographs realized that her paperwork was off by one record for the last several shots. She stopped all work until they straightened it out and one of her co-workers started delving into their computer system to correctly align the information.
"No hit on an 07Q," he said to her, incredulous. "No hit?" she asked, just checking. "Try a DCS." Eventually they got it straightened out. I stepped up to the mark looked into the bright light and asked "Do I look at the light?" She said, "Four weeks." I never noticed when she took the picture. Hope my mouth isn't hanging open like a dork. On the way out, I stopped by the information table in the middle where I'd gotten oriented originally and waited my turn to tell the woman working there how I expected that she probably heard complaints for the most part and that I wanted to say that my time there, without an appointment, had been speedy, and everyone had been friendly and done their job well. She turned to get me a form to fill out since she admitted that they did mostly hear negative feedback and when I told her I'd bring it back later (I have to get our other car smog-checked on Friday), she said "I trust you, handsome."
Sitting in my friend's car, borrowed since B's old one died, I remembered how Pearson Marx, the toy heiress had told me back in college that I'd be a handsome man in my thirties. At the time it was bitter, faint praise.
Copyright © 1997