Carolina’s Towing Troubles
Despite not yet having her license, senior Carolina Jimenez has managed to get her car towed. Twice.
January 29, 2017
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Have you ever wanted to spend your Tuesday night at the Minneapolis DMV? Have you ever wanted to stand in a line for three hours so that you can pay $138 to get your car back? Have you ever wanted to do that twice? Of course you haven’t. Getting your car towed sends you to a nightmare hellscape where time is distorted and your very existence fades into the endless line. You live to pay your fine. You die to get your car back.
Now, for my credentials. You can’t just listen to anyone handing out advice about towed cars. You can trust these tips and tricks (and me) because they’ve been vetted. Twice. That’s right, I’ve had a car for five months and that baby’s seen two rodeos at the ol’ impound lot already.
The first move after getting your car towed is telling your mom. She will be mad, but she’ll make everything better. She will remind me that there’s a fine, a tow fee, and a storage fee. She’ll also remind you that you have to pay. She’ll question why you didn’t learn from the last time your car was towed. You will listen and want to melt away like the old snow that was being plowed which is the origin of all your problems.
After this, you have to actually find your car. The worst thing about getting your car towed other than the shame you invite into your home is that no one tells you anything. From the moment you get to the spot where you car should be but mysteriously is no longer located and on, a great scavenger hunt is afoot. Chances are, you live in a town. So you have to call that town’s DMV and ask them if your car is there. It’s a little weird, but get your mom to do it for you (she’s the best).
Once you find out where you’re going, you have to get there. This is where it comes in handy to have a friend with a car, or a bus pass, or a nice bike, or if you don’t care about your carbon footprint, more than one car. Turn the ignition on that bad boy and drive to the DMV. There will be an ominous green sign awaiting you.
Now that you’re within the DMV’s borders, it’s a waiting game. You can’t trust watches. You can’t trust the attendants. You can’t think about homework or if you’ll get home soon. The only thing on your mind is locating the money for bail and maybe making a few friends in line. People are surprisingly nice when they’re cooped up in a queue to get back their expensive possessions.
The next two hours go like this: waiting, mom makes a comment about being tired, waiting, staring at the gray walls, waiting, figuring out how to get snow emergency alerts, finding a seat, having to get up from your seat, waiting while standing, you exit one waiting trailer for an actual building with heat, waiting while in a disorienting crowd, a baby cries, waiting, waiting, waiting…
Eventually, you’ll make it to the window to pay your fine. Know what kind of car you drive and have your ID. This is where you’re told what exactly you did wrong and think you’ll have to sign an agreement to not be dumb again. Pay the fee, fine, and another fine. Accept your mistake and vow to never commit it again.
This is the best part: three hours have passed since you figured out that you should have just parked your car further down the street. You’ve given The City your money in penance. They give you more time in a line as a reward. You have been waiting for so long. Do you have a life outside this line? You can’t remember. You can see the end of the building, but somehow the line keeps going. A worker will guide you out. This is the moment you’ve been waiting for––your car plus you. You almost don’t remember what it feels like to have personal transportation. You drive away. The green sign grins in your rearview mirror, awaiting your next mistake.