This is Captain Boycott Speaking

I mentioned this on Twitter on Friday, but I think it needs to be captured for posterity:

That’s a Nobel Prize winner posting a Hale & Pace sketch. Peak 2018, right there.

Anyway, this week, I ran into One Of Those Things That Reminds You The US Is Different. Consider, then, the act of moving. Now, while I have never owned a car in the UK, and the jury is still out as to whether my driving license actually allows me to drive a car there, I believe the process of updating your details after you move back home is: tell DVLA where you live. Job done!

Right, then. Moving from North Carolina to Ohio. Firstly, you have to change your driving license, because driving licenses are state affairs. In some states, you may have to actually retake your test (for some reason, Massachusetts doesn’t trust South Carolinian drivers), but thankfully I didn’t have to do that.

But! You also have to re-register your car. And boy does this lead to a fun state of affairs. To start with, you have to get hold of the title of your car. Which may see you tearing your new apart before you discover that the title resides with the bank until you pay off said car. Conveniently, I had done that the week before, so instead of going through every piece of paper in the house, I could have waited until the post arrived.

Right, off to the DMV, right? Well, no. Bizarrely, Ohio calls it the BMV. And I still couldn’t go, because before I could request a title change, I had to go to a garage to get an ‘out of state VIN check’. All this seemed to involve was writing down the VIN and the value of the odometer, but still required me going to two different garages before finding somebody that was willing to do it, along with a 15 minute wait as I tried to pay the $3.50 fee with a credit card.1

Once I had that, I was able to go to the BMV. And off I trotted. Only to find out that Ohio’s license requirements have changed due to Real ID, so instead of the one proof of address, I needed two. And that I could only pay for the title change request with cash or cheque. But I could pay for the new driving license with a credit card. So another trip home and back.

When I go back next week, I get to buy new license plates (front and back!). I believe I’m supposed to send the old NC plate back…and I guess if I don’t, I’ll be hunted down the next time I head back to Durham.

Anyhow, that has been my week! With some escape room antics and some other things on the side. I may have registered to vote as well, but I’m not quite sure about that. Something that probably needs to be double-checked, considering it’s a midterm year…


  1. I know, I’m a monster. [return]