Rest Easy: Bureaucracy Is Still in Effect!

papers, they're what's for dinner

So as I mentioned, I got the court order for my name change, and that’s lovely and all, but its just the first of many steps.

For example, to get my name changed on my driver’s license and at my bank, I need to get a new social security card. It’s not a terribly complicated process, and I carefully followed the instructions on the government website, but I just got rejected anyway because they say I didn’t send any documents establishing my identity.

I sent them the certified copy of the court decree changing my name, but apparently that’s not enough. The rejection letter says I have to send a state ID, like a driver’s license, or a current passport.

Wait, send my original – and only – license or passport to the social security office?

I thought that must be a mistake, so I called. I asked the pleasant person on the other end of the line if that request meant what I thought it meant, that they expected me to send my actual driver’s license to them in the mail (I don’t have a current passport, or I’d send that).

They said, yes, in fact, that’s exactly what it meant.

“I know it doesn’t make any sense,” they said, “but that’s what the regulations say. If you can send it certified mail, you should do that.”

Well, yeah.

So we’ll see. I haven’t been pulled over or needed to show my driver’s license to anyone since we moved here to Joshua Tree. There aren’t a lot of cops around, and it just hasn’t come up. But I know, as soon as I send it off to the social security office, I’m going to get pulled over. It’s inevitable. Ha.

Anyway, like I said, this is just the second of many, many, (many), steps I’ll have to take and accounts I’ll have to update. I should make a spreadsheet to keep track of them, then when I’m done I can tell you how many places I had to deal with.

It will be dozens, and that doesn’t even include my online life. My password manager has about 400 logins in it. So I imagine most of those are going to need a name update. I’ll probably be doing this for the next year.

we need more papers



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