Mythological Bureaucracy

To schedule a city inspection with Ontario, you have to call a number that only lets you leave a voicemail.  The outgoing message says to leave your address and phone number and nothing else and then beeps at you, expecting the requested information.

They never call back.

You call again, and repeat this process.

They never call back.

You call a different number in the building department and get an actual human on the line.  The human says:

“We only schedule for the next day.  You either make it on the inspection list for that day or you don’t.  We don’t call people to let them know they’ve made it on the list for tomorrow.  We also don’t call people to let them know they haven’t made it on the list for tomorrow.”

The human proceeds to tell you that the window for the inspector to show up at your house is sometime during daylight.  You ask the human if you should just call, leave a message, and then never leave your home until the mythical inspection man comes.  The human says:

*heavy sigh*

You ask the human what they would do if they needed to have something inspected by mythical creatures that may or may not exist.  The human tells you:

“Call tomorrow morning.  Leave a message.  Call back tomorrow after 4pm and ask if you made it on the list.  If you have, take the entire following day off and cancel any plans you may have made.  If you haven’t, repeat the previous step until you’re on the list.”

You ask the human if they happen to know whether or not Santa got the letter you sent him in 1975.  The human says:

“hhhhgah!”

and then hangs up on you.

You call the building department, and leave a message, and wonder when everything stopped working, because the why of it no longer matters.

About

Tim Hatch lives in a secret volcano headquarters somewhere in the South Pacific, where he controls the world economy and writes confessional poetry about his disappointing childhood.

His poetry has been published in MungBeing, East Jasmine Review, The Pacific Review, The Vehicle, Touch: The Journal Of Healing, Apeiron Review, and he is the recipient of the 2014 Felix Valdez Award.

He finds writing about himself in the third person to be an overtly seductive invitation to tell lies.

He once captured a French Eagle at Talavera.

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