FireTruck Diary

My experiences restoring and playing with a 1960 Ford C-850 Fire Engine

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   Friday, August 16, 2002
Teased with the sight of my plates
I almost got my plates today. Having gotten my letter saying they were in, calling to verify, showing up at the Tax Assessor's office and getting to see them across the counter from me, I wasn't able to get them today.

I'm fascinated by the convoluted series of things required to get DeTruck legal. In this case the problem was that on my first visit to the Tax Assessor's office, which resulted in a Title transfer, the 'Registration Class' and the 'Plate Type' were set to 'Exempt'. Brrrrrrrrrrt! Wrong answer! Go back to start and begin again. This last step was one month ago today and I still haven't actually received the title. This was mysterious to the Tax Assessor's office as well. Now I have to call TXDOT and determine what is up with my title and get it re-issued with the correct registration class and plate type.

It was a slow afternoon, close to closing, at the Tax Assessor's. I was able to go directly to a window where a nice young woman proceeded to help me. She found the plates right away, but seemed to be taking a long time asking questions of co-workers in the back cubicles. I knew something was up when the woman she was talking to shook her head and I could hear her say something about 'You'll have to ask...' and pointed to a man in a different area. I was pretty sure right then and there I wasn't walking out with plates.

My attendant had a conversation with the man and I could tell he was explaining something negative. He started going on about his business and I heard her say to him 'Could you explain that to him?' (meaning to me.) He came over, and adopted the body posture of someone official who is giving bad news. Everyone had the air of getting ready for me to get angry. I listed to his explanation that the title was incorrect. I had decided that life would go on either way, whether I got the plates or not, and I didn't feel like getting angry, so I smiled while he talked and asked politely what steps I needed to take next and what I might have done to avoid this problem. Everyone seemed a bit shocked that I wasn't being a jerk. The woman helping me actually thanked me for my attitude and said that I couldn't imagine how much my attitude meant to all of them. I felt sorry for how much abuse they must take. I told her that I was glad they were there and that they did a good job. She seemed quite surprised. Some days it's a sad world.

Now I must call TXDOT (of course it's Friday after 5:00 now, so it'll have to be next week,) and track down my title so that I can send it back through the system :-) Amazing. But not worth getting cheezed about. As Kurt Vonnegut writes, "So it goes."


Index of Post Titles:

Vital Statistics:
1960 Ford

534 cid
5-speed Gas
277 horsepower

27000 lbs. GVW

Young Fire Equip.

1000 gal. tank

500 GPM Hale
Midship Pump
Type QSHD-2,

Ferrell Fire Co.,
Ferrell, NJ

Buchanan VFD,
Buchanan, TX