Thursday, October 29, 2009

cause I'm feelin like a criminal

About a month ago, I sat up in the middle of the night. A thought had flashed through my mind – a thought about my teaching license that was about to expire. My Colorado license was set to expire on October 12th and I’ve never gotten my Oklahoma license. I’m don’t even know what it entails to re-apply for a license that has expired but I’m pretty sure it requires things that I don’t want to have to do – like a three day long test to make sure I know the capitol of Las Vegas and the square root of infinity.

The next morning I got up on a mission. I printed all the materials that made up the application and gathered all the necessary items: transcripts, copy of Colorado license, and checks for ridiculous amounts of money. The only thing missing was my fingerprints. Oh, my fingerprints, my fingerprints.

I actually started the process of applying for my Oklahoma license back in 2005, while I still lived in Colorado. I submitted all the materials and waited. I finally got something in the mail but it wasn’t the certificate I expected, it was a sheet that said my fingerprints had been denied and needed to be redone. So I repeated the process and got the same result AGAIN. I gave up. I didn’t live in OK so I didn’t really need the license, it was just a precaution at the time and I still had four years left on my CO license. That was, like, forever away.

But now I was forced to get my fingerprints again. I drove to the Elk City police station and decided to try my luck for a third time. I was paired up with an officer who seemed a little less than interested in taking some lady’s fingerprints. He took my fingerprints with minimal conversation and a whole lot of indifference. When he finished, I looked at the fingerprints. They were messy and blurred, even I could tell that. I could have saved myself the drive to the police station and taken my own fingerprints at home with a magic marker. I could only hope that this officer was a “good ole boy” and that somehow the fingerprint place would finally accept my submission. Third time’s a charm. I hoped.

More than a month had passed since the day I sent them off. I took that as a good sign. Then yesterday, I got another big envelope from the OK Department of Education. This was it – I was finally licensed and could teach in Oklahoma (even though at this point I would rather pull every hair out of my head one by one than teach.) I ripped open the envelope and….guess what?!? It was yet another sheet telling me that my fingerprints had been denied and needed to be redone.

This makes me think that instead of teaching, maybe I am destined to pursue a life of crime. I mean, the Oklahoma FBI can’t even read my fingerprints! So that would make me a perfect criminal, right? I wouldn’t even need to waste money on wearing gloves since I apparently HAVE NO FINGERPRINTS. And it probably pays way better than teaching, anyway.

I guess I’d better forget about the prints and go shopping for ski masks.

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