Looking drunk, pitiful: Four years I owe to New Haven BMV

| May 13, 2013

STRANGE THOUGHTS
By D.L. Russell

On March 17, 2009 I was in a foul mood. I was lost, bewildered and downright confused. I don’t know it if lasted all day, but I know for a brief moment in time, I was pretty bad off. I don’t remember how it happened, but from the evidence, I’m almost certain I had been slapped across the face by a big man with very large, ashy hands. It was obviously the kind of slap that snaps the head far to the left or right, and in that instant when I turned my head back, my picture was taken by a crazy lady with a counter-mounted camera, a long line of customers, and an apparently full bladder.

As I said, I don’t remember any of this happening on March 17, 2009, but the evidence shows this must be the case. The evidence shows my eyes crossed, my head in a stroke-like slump and my lips turned, ready to ask, “did anyone see who was driving the truck that just hit me and kept going?” Yes, the evidence shows this clearly.

What evidence you ask? It’s simple really, just a small 2” by 3” piece of plastic, with my name and address on it. Yes, the evidence is in the form of my driver’s license, from the New Haven, Ind., BMV. For more than four years now, I have carried this thing around with a picture of myself, looking drunk and pitiful, waiting for the day it expires and I can go get a new one.

For four years, anytime I have needed to show ID, I have had this moment of dread because of the reactions it elicits. I’ve had women turn their lips up at it, while at the liquor store. Tellers at the bank have done double and triple takes, and walked off with it to show their superiors. Once I even heard two nurses laughing about it, while I waited in the lobby of the doctor’s office. I mean it, this picture is that bad!

Sometime before my birthday I have to go and renew my driver’s license and this time I will be ready. This time I will make sure I am dressed to the 9’s, and clean shaven. I may even wear my nicest suit and lucky necktie. I’m also going to get there early and I will ask the crazy lady taking my picture if she would like to go and use the bathroom first, and then, only after I am standing with my shoulders back, my head straight, and a nice smile is parting my lips, will I allow the crazy lady to take the picture I will be stuck with until 2017. Wish me luck!

—DLR

D.L. Russell is an author of Horror and Dark Fantasy and the co-founder and editor of Strange, Weird, and Wonderful Publishing. You can also visit his blog at www.dlrussellsblog.com.

This article originally appeared in our May 8, 2013 issue.

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Frost Illustrated is Fort Wayne's oldest weekly newspaper. Your Independent Voice in the Community, featuring news & views of African Americans since 1968.

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