Published on: October 31, 2019
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Hi, I'm Kevin Coupe and this is FaceTime with the Content Guy.
I got a lesson the other day in why sometimes all the preparation in the world doesn't matter - reality comes along and smacks you upside the head. And I'm convinced that there is a business lesson in there somewhere.
I was thinking the other day that I ought to get a jump on getting of those Real ID drivers licenses that will be required for getting through security at airports. These new drivers licenses will have a star in one corner, signifying that they meet the new Homeland Security requirements; they won't be mandatory for another year, but I uncharacteristically decided to get ahead of the wave.
First step: gather everything I needed. In fact, even more than I needed. I had my old drivers license, passport, passport card, several pay stubs and some bills with my name and address on them. And, of course, my Social Security card.
Next step: Go to DMV. Which I did. Normally this is a wretched experience, but in Connecticut there is a satellite office in Stamford where they have limited services, but you can pay eight bucks to make an appointment, which saves a lot of time and anxiety. As anyone who has endured a DMV experience can tell you, this is one of the best ways to spent $8 that I can imagine.
I get there on time, pay the entry fee, and get called up to the window. I told the woman why I was there, and she said, "Okay, let's see if you have what you need." So I showed her - my old drivers license, passport, passport card, several pay stubs and some bills with my name and address on them. And, of course, my Social Security card. I was feeling good. Even triumphant.
She shook her head. "Sorry, but I can't use this Social Security card."
"Why?" I was crestfallen.
"Because it is laminated."
"Of course it is laminated," I said. "I got it 55 years ago - it wouldn't have survived if I hadn't laminated it."
She was very nice, said she was sorry, and recommended that I go to the Stamford Social Security office to order up a new one. She even gave me back my eight dollars.
So I got in the Mustang, drove over to the federal offices, signed in and waited a few minutes to be called.
When I finally got up to the window, I told the young man what I needed, and he grinned. "You went to DMV for a new license, huh?"
I handed him my old card, and he shook his head. "You're not supposed to laminate it. It says so on the back of the card."
"Turn it over," I said. "It doesn't say that."
He turned it over and looked at it. And then looked at me. And then looked at the card. And then looked at me.
"You're right, it doesn't," he said. "You probably were born before lamination was invented."
I stared at him for a moment. Horrified. I couldn't believe he'd actually said that. But then I laughed … because I have to admit it was a pretty funny line.
Then, he processed the request, and when I get my new card, I'll go back to the DMV and try again.
It was, however, a great example of how sometimes it doesn't matter how prepared you are. Stuff happens. Unexpected stuff. And you have to deal with it.
Oh, and one other thing. I checked, and found out that lamination was invented in 1912. I'm old, but not that old.
That's what is on my mind this morning and, as always, I want to hear what is on your mind.
- KC's View: