>In preparation for her departure from NYC, where we have lived in harmony and friendship more or less for 13 years, Dr. P went to register her new wheels (parents' used mini van) at the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles in Harlem. I admit that I didn't even know that there was a branch in Harlem. Dr. P invited me to accompany her on this small step towards our roadtrip, but alas, I had to work on an extremely annoying spreadsheet that I fucked up at least three times and had to begin again from scratch.

Here's what I missed: while Dr. P waited her turn, another customer and a DMV employee broke out into a screaming match. It was so intense that the DMV rep actually left her position behind the counter and came out into the general area so that she could yell directly into the other woman's face. It took the assistance of two burly men to separate them.

Unfortunately, the fight was not helpful in completing the customer's transaction, so she returned to the waiting room. She was called to another DMV employee's window about 15 minutes later. At that point, Dr. P said the original employee who had "helped" this customer came out and began bellowing at her again. The burly men again were required to keep the peace. As she was dragged back behind the counter, Dr. P said the woman shouted, "Your momma ain't professional!"

I am so sorry I missed that. I am further sorry because my spreadsheet revealed that the taxpayers of New York City may in fact be paying rent to the tune of $13,000 per child for one sweetheart deal of a child care center. (Hopefully, this is the result of a horrible typo or formulaic error, although I fear for the worst.) I'd much rather spend my mornings watching crazed DMV employees, although I suppose my number crunching may lead to more good in the world as I provide solid evidence to move children's programs into more affordable, and hopefully, more modern buildings. It's a different sort of battle.

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