A Trip to Social Security

Last night I came up with the genius plan to drop off a job application at J. Jill, then stop at Bank of America to verify my identity in order to open new accounts with them. All went well when I woke up at 10 am and proceeded to lay in bed with my dogs for some time before getting up to brush my teeth, take a shower, and otherwise prepare myself for the day.

My trip to Hunt Valley Towne Center to visit J. Jill went unhindered, I even found a parking space within a short distance of my destination. From there, I headed right to my local branch of Bank of America where I proceeded to embarrass myself by asking the tellers who to talk to about opening an account, when that person was standing right next to me trying to get my attention.

In order for the rest of this story to make sense, you must know that about a year ago, I fell victim to a wallet theft… which unfortunately included my Social Security card. Since then, I have been mindful of my credit, making sure that no funny business was going on. So, you’ll understand my shock when the nice man opening my bank accounts found that someone else’s name appeared on the screen when he inputted my social security number.

I had proven my identity with my driver’s license and my debit card, so this man knew I wasn’t lying about my name. However, there was now some level of doubt that I was providing the correct Social Security number. Unfortunately, since I had neglected to replace my social security card before this event, I had to slink out of the bank and into my car to drive 20 minutes away to make a visit to the Social Security office in my area.

Once I arrived there, I realized that this visit would be even worse than a trip to the MVA (Maryland’s version of the DMV). I also decided to arrive around lunchtime and I still hadn’t eaten today. In comparison, those few SS representatives on duty decided it was time to take a lunch break so my visit was extended by some 15 minutes. I sat, patiently, and listened as others’ numbers were called. I overheard droopy phone calls of elderly men sitting around me, complaining to their spouses about how long this wait was lasting. Did I mention how oppressively hot it was in the office? I took a moment to return to my car to add some more time to get some fresh air in my system.

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When I returned to the waiting area, I thought I would only have to wait a few more minutes before my number was called. I was woefully wrong. Another 30 minutes went by and my phone battery was draining faster than my patience. Should I just go home and come back early tomorrow morning? Am I going to throw up? Can you throw up when you haven’t eaten in 18 hours? Fortunately, I didn’t have to mull these earth-shattering questions any longer as A165 was called over the speakers.

In the end, it took less than 5 minutes to submit my paperwork for a new card. I had spent over an hour waiting for this moment. After wrapping up my conversation with the unenthusiastic woman sitting behind a window, I was on my happy way back to my car.

I ended this adventure with my good deed of the day. I informed the man who was parking his car next to me that I was leaving 2 hours on my meter and that he should take advantage of it. Finally, I pulled out of that godforsaken parking lot and made my way to Chipotle. In completing one “grown-up” task, I can now expect to open up my first “grown-up” bank account. Now all I have to worry about is the possible identity theft that occurred with my Social Security number… I guess I’m almost adulting.

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