What's in your wallet?
I wonder if it's the same thing that's in mine. If you're a Boomer, it probably is.
In my wallet is a driver’s license with a picture on it that purports to be me. The problem is that the man in the picture is not me. The man in the picture on my driver's license is most likely someone's grandfather, but certainly not me.
How did the picture of such an aged geezer get on my driver's license? I have theorized that there is a creature known as the Little Old Jewish Man or LOJM who leaps in front of camera any time I have a picture taken. If there is no LOJM, than the distorted and unappealing image upon the card may be the result of atmospheric disturbances, global warming, or some other bizarre phenomenon that is right now being over reported on CNN.
Since my driver’s license is used frequently for ID purposes, I would expect to routinely hear these words from those whose job it is to scope it out:
Why, this isn't you!
But oddly enough I never seem to hear them at all.
"Here's a pass for the 28th floor, sir. I'll need to see an ID first, please."
"Umm, is that a picture ID you're asking for? I can give you lots of cards with my name on them. Ah, this is one from Shlepper's Warehouse."
"I'm sure that opens all doors for you at Shlepper's Warehouse, sir. But I do need a picture ID, like a driver's license."
"Well, I'm afraid there's a problem with my driver's license. The picture on it doesn't look like me. If I show it to you, you're going to say 'Why, this isn't you!' and you won't let me up in the building!'"
"How about I get someone to vouch for me instead? I know a lot of people on Twitter."
"Sir, the license!"
"Okay, okay,” I said, handing him my driver's license. “But you'll see, you're about to say 'Why, this isn't you!' And then I'll never get up in the building!"
"That's you. Go on up."
"What? You're letting me up?"
"You're good to go."
"Without valid ID?! I want your badge number!"
And so it goes. Despite the fact that the picture on my card looks nothing like me, I never seem to get "Why, this isn't you!" Rather, I get admitted to wherever I wish to go, get to purchase whatever I want to purchase, and get permitted to do whatever it is I am seeking permission to do.
It isn't right. It isn't fair.
Why? Because it isn't me!
Since I so dislike that bogus picture on my driver's license, I took to carrying about a twenty year old license in which the man in the picture does indeed look just like me. Of course I carry it along with my current license since that is the one that must be shown when required.
"Driver's license, registration, and insurance card,” said the traffic cop after I beautifully executed an illegal U-turn.
"Certainly, Officer, but I'm afraid there's a problem with my license."
"Just hand me the cards, sir!" he grumbled.
Wish I could explain it before he sees it, I thought, as I forked over the cards and gritted my teeth.
"Why, this isn't you!" he bellowed, thrusting the driver’s license into my face.
And finally I heard those words! At long last.
"You see officer, it's the LOJM!” I scrambled to explain. “Or some cosmic disturbance that made the picture look much older than....”
I looked at the license thrust in my face. It was the one from 20 years ago.
The officer accepted the correct driver’s license and gave me a whopping ticket. But the experience was not a total loss. I did finally get to hear those golden words “Why, this isn’t you!”
Even if they were in response to a driver’s license dated 1996.
So what’s in your wallet?