Spent the morning in a borrowed car, running up to the Bergen courthouse. The promised "no hassle" garnishment turns out not to exist, of course; first I have to file a motion with the court to make the child support non-conditional. (In the original agreement, Gail reserves the right not to pay me if I don't take Gabe to his dance class, which makes the support "conditional". I haven't missed any in five years; this little gem o' language was put in there precisely to get in my way. Skilled lawyer she had.)
Now to get to work. Find COBRA paperwork first, then write to Dr. Harris and find the other profs I need to write to. Then figure out how to get the boys to Aikido.
Should get some weebles into the Aikido class; *everyone* falls down *there*.
Wow. Dealing with State bureaucracies can make you feel subhuman in a hurry. According to the DMVwads, I got a ticket, for "Failure to Appear." In *1996*. They, of course, just found out about it October 2003, and sent me a letter threatening to suspend my license because of it. Legally they can do this because legally, driving is a Privilege, not a Right, and they can suspend Privileges at whim.
I was still in LA at the time, busy recovering from a heart attack. So I sent 'em a note back saying I'd deal with it when I was back in NJ. I got back in November, and promptly had to deal with my divorce and my ex using the classic "If You Ever Want to See Your Kids Again..." tactics. I started checking out what I'd have to do to deal with the nominal ticket.
Step #1: Get a lawyer. Why? Because the judge will throw you out, otherwise. This is denied by the court system and the official books, but held to be gospel by the people who hang around the system a lot. Lawyers get listened to; "civilians" don't. If you get the "wrong" lawyer -- one that particular judge doesn't like -- you'll still get screwed, but no lawyer guarantees a screwing. That'll be $850, please. Shall I believe these folks, or not?
I'm starting to sound like I'm whining. I don't like that. Sorry. I'll stop now.