Wednesday, February 27, 2008
paris countdown... interrupted....
ahem, so, mayor madrid is not the only la mesean in trouble these days. today, our white van was the subject of foul play..... (which is by the way, for sale now only $4,500 cash)...
anyway, it needed new registration stickers back in july. my husband goes online and pays for them.
but, they didn't come.
my husband called - enduring all phone frustration, and finally got the answer - DMV didn't mail the tags because DMV needed to be shown proof of our insurance. fine.
(mind you we have had the same insurance we have since we bought this car new in 1987- but still). OK he sends in the proof of insurance. no tags come.
he calls, they are paid for and now the insurance is proven, everything is OK, says DMV.
but the tags do not come. for months- actually forever.
another call. DMV says OK everything is clear - same as before- everything is still proven and paid.
no tags come.
because we have no tags, we fear driving it - it sits in our driveway. gastone had gently nudged me to go get the tags from DMV. as in, me personally go there - but i never found the time ---- my BIG mistake.
meanwhile, occasionally, gastone takes the van out to keep the engine and battery working, while waiting for the tags to arrive- or you might say, while waiting for me to get the *&^#$%^ tags. like i finally did this morning.
but first, OHBOY, he got stopped, i get "the call" from him. "i'm standing on the corner of el cajon blvd. and baltimore. i was stopped by a cop on a motorcycle and he towed the van to an impound because there are no tags on the car. i would have shoved his head up his smokepipe except he had a gun.......".
"wait a minute - why didn't he just give you a fix-it ticket?"
AND, he had the van towed."
"but, how could he have the van towed for a fix-it ticket?"
"i couldn't stop him, he had a gun, whaddya want me to do?" like a good wife, i understood immediately the need to kill a cop. oh not just any cop, except any cop from la mesa who rides motorcyles and has van impounded without looking up and finding out whether or not, "said van" is legally registered.......asshole. i thank my husband for not killing him as i could not defend him by myself. he assured me that he would have probably died anyway from several gunshot wounds.
this conversation was unlike our usual morning civil exchanges. i was proud of how i could act on my feet and reassure him during a crisis like this...so far, he didn't see that any of this was my fault.
so, i collect him, take him to work -(he was so steamed - i hadn't seen him even remotely this steamed since he had an italian style fight with an asshole on a vespa in florence, italy)
i went to DMV and waited a lifetime, got the tags, paid nothing - why? because they were already paid online back in july 2007, i proved nothing, it was already proven back in july 2007 also. humpf.
so i asked the DMV person," well, why didn't you just send the tags to us then...you know, when you had our money and proof of our insurance?" she said, "...because you have to initiate the whole process again after you prove you have insurance."
what the hell is that suppose to mean? GD it. INITIATE my ass!!!!! does that sound crazy to you????? initiate getting the tags from DMV after you pay everything and jump through al hoops, you need to "request" to get your tags again.........? (which we had done, so that was bullshit).
anyway, i need to find out where the van is impounded since gastone didnt find out during his rage with "said cop" and it didn't say on the ticket and DMV was clueless.....so...i ask a friendly (other than LM) cop who happened to be loitering about DMV - he tells me i need to go to the la mesa police station and ask them. i call first. LM police tells me to call the tow company and give me a number for one in ten-buck-two. (a tow company they have a contract with).
i call 10 buck 2 - they have never heard of our van - maybe i should try the impound in el cajon - i get a new phone number. i call. yes, finally they locate the van there. gawd it had only been there 3 hours and they forgot the car????
BUT, the impound warns me, first i need to get a "release" form signed at the la mesa police department at the station so that they (impound) may see a proof that i have the tags. (this is info that is suppose to be automatically in their computer directly from DMV....but i agree to do this).
so i do it, i go to LM police with the tags.. LM police charges me $78.00 in cash only, no checks.....%&$@$&*( why? cuz its a huge racket). once they have this money they write me a release - which looks very much like something a jr. high office clerk would write out if you wanted out of class.
i explain that the registration had been paid the whole time - not delinquent - the liney faced mean police lady behind the thick window softened slightly and said she was sorry but i should go tell it to DMV, it wasn't the fault of LM police. i say "wait a minute... don't you have a computer linked to DMV ?"-
yes, we do, says sour puss.
then why didn't you know and why do i pay you $78.00???
she said, she didn't know why DMV made a mistake, i just need to pay it and to go complain to DMV.
i went to impound. i went to the one i called not the one LM police lady told me to go to....which was out in spring valley (10 buck2) somewhere (BTW, kathy drove me around for this, it was costing her time and trouble as well - just think if i worked somewhere and took time off for this nonsense. THANK YOU KATHY).
i go to the impound and tell them that it was all a mistake; that we had paid all along for the tags - they just weren't delivered. he sucks in his teeth and considers this for a moment. "geezzz, you will probably never see our money again from DMV. thats really screwed up." i heartily agree with him and for a moment i think we are soulfriends. we both nod our heads in agreement.
" well, i venture, "may i have the van now?"
"sure", he says pleasantly, "do ya have the release for the police station?"
yes. i provided everything..the release, the receipt for the $78.00, the tags and my notes on the directions to the place.
"OK " he says warmly,"that will be $245."
"WHAT THE*&&^$^&??!!!???! i stomped up and down with a red face...i think i even spit a little.
"but its not our fault, it was DMV - a "non delivery"...." there was a form i filled out at DMV that asked the reason for the visit and printed on the form was "failure of delivery of tags" gawd, it happens so much you only have to check a box for the grievance.
didn't matter, all of this had fallen on deaf ears with mr. impound.
i started to write a check ---
i was stopped.."no, check allowed". WHAT?!?! i am feeling dizzy now.
luckily, i had a credit card they accepted.
"why so much?"
"well", started the worn rehearsed line," we have contract with the la mesa police to charge $200 for towing and $45 is for storage of your vehicle...."
BUT YOU HAVE ONLY HAD THE VAN FOR 3 HOURS!!!!
"I'm sorry. he smiles and i notice tobacco in his teeth. "but good luck suing DMV for their mistake - i bet you could get your money back."
we looked at each other through the thick reinforced glass with the very small hole used only for passing through credit cards. my eyes squeezed down to slits and my mouth was in a perfect screw.
he then said, "you probably won't win though".
DAMNIT, i knew it. he is not a soulfriend at all - he has casted me an evil eye.
this is all that damn mayor madrid's fault for causing a drunken scandal and now la mesa is going nuts scrambling to get more funds to defend him......
old drunken fool.
just be careful out there in la mesa - the cops on motorbikes and otherwise are very up for catching whatever they can. the bastards. and be careful doing online business with DMV. impound guys can be nice, at first, but impound is more expensive by the hour than a room at the marriott. er, so i have heard.