Friday, May 14, 2010

The Wild Wild West

More opinions on States . . .

When looking through my change for afternoon coffee money, I found a Wyoming State quarter. It says, "The Equality State." Apparently nobody at the Mint has seen The Laramie Project.

I once had an opportunity to deliver a document to the State Capital in Cheyenne. For reasons I don't entirely remember, I was told by a law firm partner that the document had to be stamped by the Wyoming Secretary of State on December 31. January 1 was too late. And it just happened to be December 31.

What was clear was that it was entirely my problem to figure out how to get this done, despite the fact that on-line or fax processing was not available for this type of document. And, oh yeah, I WASN'T ACTUALLY IN WYOMING.

So I did what any panicked 4th year associate would do. I high-tailed it to Cheyenne, on a moment's notice, in a wind and snow storm that was threatening to shut down the State.

I was in a total panic. On my way out the door, I decided to take a chance at getting in touch with the SoS office to assess the likelihood of them processing my document if I could make it there. (1) They answered their phone. What kind of State office was this? (2) They didn't even ask if I had first tried to find the answer on my own on their web page. The lady just calmly told me that she didn't foresee a problem (and I am thinking "oh lady I am so going to quote you on that when someone at your office tells me later that they can't do it") and that, once I got to the building, I should turn left at the buffalo. Ha. Very funny lady. Tell the panicked associate to turn at the buffalo.

Despite the storm, I got into Cheyenne and to the building in record time because do you know what? There is no rush hour traffic in Cheyenne. Nope. You just go right to the front door of the SoS. Well, first you trudge through a snow drift in your open-toed shoes because this is Wyoming in the middle of winter.

When I stepped inside, I looked for the metal detector. I can't remember the last time I was at a State building and didn't have to go through a metal detector. Well, no metal detector, but a dozy guard was able to point me in the direction of the buffalo. Right there. One real stuffed buffalo. And there, beyond the stuffed buffalo, was the SoS office. Thank God, the line was not out the door. In fact, when I got inside, there was no line at all. I walked right up to the counter. And the lady asked if I was the person that had called. And then she offered me gum. And told me to relax.

Considering it was New Year's Eve, I wanted to stay and party like it was 1999 with the staff of the Wyoming Secretary of State. They were all so friggin' nice.

But anyway, The Equality State - no.


  1. Isn't Wyoming the state that brought us Matthew Shepard? Equality my ass.

    But I suppose "No rush hour and pleasant people at the secretary of state" is a bit long for a quarter.

  2. You realize I'll be using "turn left at the Buffalo" several times tonight. For some reason that just made me smile this afternoon!