PDA

View Full Version : No clocks in Indiana DMV



LincolnparkRed
08-03-2005, 02:41 PM
locks at license branches? No problem!

Did you happen to see a report this week about the Bureau of Motor Vehicles banning clocks at its branches?

In what has to join the list of Most Bizarre Government Policies Ever, BMV bosses have decided that hiding clocks is a great way to make long waits seem shorter. Without clocks to watch, people standing in long lines supposedly won't be able to complain about just how long they've been waiting.

I'm not kidding. Someone who collects a paycheck from Indiana taxpayers actually came up with this idea.

At first I thought the idea was part of a plan by Gov. Mitch Daniels' administration to dampen the furor over daylight-saving time. Just hide all of our clocks! But no, this is actually a serious attempt to reduce customer complaints at the BMV by preventing clock-watching.

Apparently, BMV Commissioner Joel Silverman envisions conversations like this:

Customer One: "So, how long have you been waiting?"

Customer Two: "I have no idea, so I guess not long. (Looks outside.) But the sun was still up when I got here. (Shrugs shoulders.)"

See? No clocks, no problems.

This idea appears to be unique in government, although it recalls the no-windows rule in some casinos, which is said to guarantee gamblers don't realize how much time has passed before they've emptied their wallets.

While unusual, the bureau's "don't worry, be happy" strategy offers super potential for fans of hiding problems to make them go away. Just think. If hiding clocks does end the cherished tradition of griping about BMV service, then government can solve all kinds of other problems with simple prohibitions.

No calculators: City and state budget deficits could be erased in one day if the budget folks would toss their calculators in the trash. If you can't calculate deficits, why worry about them?

No sniffing: The stink from sewage overflows in Fall Creek and other area waterways can induce the dry heaves. But is a problem unsmelled still a problem? Let's find out. Plug your noses and maybe we'll save millions in upgrades to the city's dilapidated sewer system.

No sweating: This one's for all of us. Yes, we've had day after day of summer temperatures topping 90 degrees. Unlike with clocks, we can't hide the sun. So just stop sweating and pretend today is a breezy, cool fall day.

BMV spokesman Greg Cook had the ill-fated task of fielding my questions on the no-clocks rule. After talking to higher-ups, he called back with a few talking points. The rule, he said, is doubly beneficial. First, it makes sure workers are not fixated on quitting time. Second, it helps manage "the customer's perception of the (BMV) experience."

No clocks, no long waits. Is it really that simple?

Of course not. This is silly. A problem hidden is still a problem. And the lack of clocks won't ease the annoyance of waiting in long lines for license plates.

But Silverman is doing some smart things to fix the bureau. And the former Galyans Sports & Outdoor executive does know a bit about creating an enjoyable retail experience. So maybe we should give him a chance.

Still, here's a tip. Next time you head to the BMV, wear a watch. And then complain all you want.

nothing like government at work.

Blimpie
08-03-2005, 02:47 PM
What's next? Removing all exterior windows and dialing the AC down to 62 degrees like all of the casinos???

KronoRed
08-03-2005, 02:50 PM
What's next? Removing all exterior windows and dialing the AC down to 62 degrees like all of the casinos???

Armed guards?

HotCorner
08-03-2005, 02:50 PM
Soon they will post "No watches are permitted in this building" signs on entrance

CTA513
08-03-2005, 03:40 PM
What's next? Removing all exterior windows and dialing the AC down to 62 degrees like all of the casinos???

Stippers and free food?

:thumbup:

REDREAD
08-03-2005, 03:53 PM
Stippers and free food?

:thumbup:

We need you in charge of improving the BMV experience :laugh:

This clock hiding thing is one of the dumbest things I've ever heard.

Blimpie
08-03-2005, 04:24 PM
We need you in charge of improving the BMV experience :laugh: Bavarian Motor Verks? ;)

Unassisted
08-03-2005, 07:47 PM
In Wisconsin, the DMV office I used had a number system where you took a number and went off to sit in a comfy (really!) waiting room chair until your number showed up on the big display on the wall. It may not have made the wait any shorter, but it was much better than standing in line between ropes on a tile floor, like we do here in Texas.

SunDeck
08-03-2005, 11:07 PM
What's next? Removing all exterior windows and dialing the AC down to 62 degrees like all of the casinos???

That's a great idea. Install slot machines and watch the revenue pour in!

pedro
08-03-2005, 11:15 PM
In Wisconsin, the DMV office I used had a number system where you took a number and went off to sit in a comfy (really!) waiting room chair until your number showed up on the big display on the wall. It may not have made the wait any shorter, but it was much better than standing in line between ropes on a tile floor, like we do here in Texas.

That's a good idea. Probably why they don't do it in Texas ;)

They do the number thing here in Oregon too, but there really isn't a nice waiting room or anything. But we only have to get our cars registered every 3 years and a new drivers license every 8.

In Georgia, you honestly had to be prepared to be in line for 6 hours. It was the evilest thing ever.

westofyou
08-03-2005, 11:47 PM
It was the evilest thing ever.

California DMV is the father of satan.

RosieRed
08-04-2005, 03:31 AM
California DMV is the father of satan.

Did you do a paternity test on that? Because I'm pretty sure the NY DMV is the father of satan.

HotCorner
08-04-2005, 09:55 AM
This comes from the Intern of The Sports Guy (Bill Simmons) on ESPN.com's Page 2 ...

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=simmons/links/050803&num=0



A cautionary tale ...

Until yesterday, I had never suffered through a particularly bad experience at the DMV, a feat that is roughly equivalent to finding oneself a thirty-five year old virgin. However, armed with horror stories about entire afternoons spent in cramped misery, I thought that I was prepared for anything. But that's like saying that an episode of "Oz" can prepare you for jail. Nothing could have ever prepared me for this ...

I show up shortly after nine to renew my expired license. The woman in front of me tells me how much longer the line was for her last time. She's pleased with this, so I decide that I'm pleased. We become best of friends.

Thirty minutes later, after winding through the snaking "Stage 1" line, I finally get my number (A024 -- it will be etched in my brain for as long as I live). So far, so good. The nice woman and I are having a grand ole' time.

I stride over to the "Stage 2" area, where a large group of people are sitting in chairs or standing in a small waiting area, staring at their numbered tickets with an intensity that is rather frightening. I begin to wonder whether I have been deceived.

I find a seat and begin waiting. I look up and notice that the numbers follow no logical pattern whatsoever. Every letter of the alphabet is being used, followed by completely sporadic numbers, as if purposely designed to keep the cattle from having any idea when they might be called. I cannot begin to imagine the rationale for this system. It seems more along the lines of an elaborate torture technique than a means of organized efficiency. I am now slightly concerned.

I decide to read. I'm holding a copy of Hunter S. Thompson's "The Rum Diary." So far I've enjoyed it immensely, but this proves to be a terrible choice for the DMV. Thompson's unique view of the world only enhances that caged animal feeling that the DMV brings out naturally. An hour or so of reading and my mind is suddenly racing with maniacally paranoid thoughts. I am no longer an outsider; I am now one of them -- a raging menace to society.

It is now over two hours into the experience and I am utterly miserable. Babies are crying, my head is pounding from not having eaten anything all day, and everyone around me has the appearance of a strung-out drug addict. When a number is called, the lucky escapee will actually outwardly celebrate as others grimace or give insincere congratulations. The numbers are still in complete chaos, meaning that none of us knows whether we are minutes or hours away from release.

Three hours later and my number gets called. I've never been more overjoyed in my life. Resisting the urge to hug the guy helping me, I quickly go through the drill. I'm handed a piece of paper and my old license and told that I have no choice but to wait again for the camera station. I begin weighing the pros and cons of the bicycle.

Thirty minutes later and my number is called again. Right as I approach the camera station, my friend from earlier stomps over and angrily asks why my number was called before hers, since she was one person in front of me in line. She gives me a murderous stare to indicate that this is somehow my fault. Apparently we are no longer friends. I am hurt.

The woman taking the picture barks some orders at me without ever making eye contact. She tells me to stand still and right as I'm about to ask her a question (and without warning), the camera flashes. As I'm about to protest, she pleasantly states, "Excellent. It will be ready in five minutes." Confused, I sit down.

Five minutes later my license is handed to me and I all but sprint to my car. Exhausted and numb, I feel as though I have aged many years in the span of a few hours. But at least I am free. As I drive off, I finally glance at my new license. What I see staring back at me causes a reaction reminiscent of the detective in "The Usual Suspects" after realizing who Keyser Soze is. It is the single worst picture of myself I've ever seen -- I look like I've been caught in mid-sneeze. I can only assume that the woman said "excellent" for completely sinister reasons. She is obviously pure evil, but I have no recourse against her. It is either be confronted with this picture every time I use my license for the next ten years, or return to Hell for a new picture. I will not go back, and deep down, I believe that she knew this, and that the picture was all part of a master plan to effectively "checkmate" me. That picture will haunt me for a decade, a blunt reminder of an experience that I will never forget.

The lesson? Never miss a deadline to renew your license online.