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We apparently have another crumb snatcher in our household that needs to be claimed on our income taxes. However, I first have to obtain documentation for this household member so I placed a call to the Social Security Administration and it went something like this:
ME: “I need to obtain a Social Security number for a member of our household.”
EXTREMELY OVERWORKED-UNDERTRAINED SOCIAL SECURITY GUY (HEREAFTER REFERRED TO AS SSG): “No problem ma’am. Congratulations on your new baby.”
ME: “Oh, it’s not a new baby. They’ve apparently been around a while.”
SSG: “Ok, well, how old is the household member?”
ME: “I’m not really sure, but I’ve been hearing about them since The Eldest crumb snatcher was old enough to talk. So maybe….nineteen or so?”
SSG: “Ummmm….ok. Is the member a male or female?”
ME: “It’s hard to say. I don’t think anyone has ever mentioned the gender of this household member.”
SSG: “I’m a little confused ma’am. You’re seeking a social security number for a member of your household but you don’t know the age or sex?”
ME: “That’s correct.”
SSG: “Can you hold on a second? I may need supervisory assistance with this one.”
ME: “No problem.”
Wow, this is going to be a bit easier than I had hoped. Normally, when I call government agencies, it’s usually such a hassle to get such a helpful employee on the line. Is that Phil Collins they are playing? Cool!
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SSG: “Thank you for holding ma’am. I have my supervisor on the line and we are going to record this conversation if that’s okay with you.”
ME: “That’s no problem at all. I usually have to repeat phone calls and tell the same thing over and over with you government agencies, so I appreciate your offer.”
SSG: “What is the name of the household member for which you wish to obtain a social security number?”
ME: “Not Me.”
SSG: “Yes ma’am you explained that earlier. I understand it’s not you, but I need a name.”
ME: “Oh, that IS the name. Not Me.”
SSG: “Ummmmm, ok. Is that a first and a middle, or first and a last?”
ME: “That’s a really good question. I never really asked. That’s just what they’ve always gone by…Not Me.”
SSG: “Ok, do you have a birth certificate for Not Me?”
ME: “Oh gracious no. I didn’t give birth to this one. Two was enough for me!”
SSG: “Do you have a passport, a photo ID, a library card, or maybe a pre-approved credit card offer mailed to Not Me? We need to have some kind of evidence of this individual’s existence.”
ME: “Well, why didn’t you just say so? I have plenty of evidence that Not Me exists!”
SSG: “Let’s hear it!”
ME: “Well, for example, we had Sweet Pea’s – that’s my daughter – 16th birthday party the other day and when Chief Money Maker and I went to bed, there were six hamburgers and about twelve hot wings left in the refrigerator. When Chief Money Maker went to make some lunch the next day, they were all gone. We asked all the crumb snatchers – we have five – who ate them, and they all said Not Me.”
There was a pause in the conversation, as I’m sure Overworked Undertrained Social Security Guy was jotting down the details.
ME: “Oh and I forgot to mention that Not Me is apparently disabled.”
SSG: “You don’t know the age or gender of Not Me, but you know they are disabled? How do you know this?”
ME: “Well, it’s pretty obvious that they only have one foot….or maybe just one leg…because I have sixty-two single socks in the laundry basket right now. All my other crumb snatchers have two feet, so Not Me is obviously wearing only one sock at a time.”
Another pause, as I’m sure Overworked Undertrained Social Security Guy was absorbing this new information. I suspected he was calling in more assistance for this complicated situation because I could hear shuffling of people in the background.
SSG: “Ma’am, your case appears to be very complex so my supervisor has authorized me to bring in some of my associates to assist and we are going to place you on speaker now, if that is okay with you.”
ME: “Oh, absolutely. You people have been so helpful today. I usually end up getting very frustrated trying to work with government agencies.”
SSG: “We’re happy to assist. Can you provide us with more evidence of Not Me’s existence?”
ME: “I could provide you with hundreds. This person has been hanging around our family for a while. Not Me has colored on my walls when my children were little, drinks the last of the milk and leaves empty jugs in the refrigerator, eats entire bags of chips just brought home from the grocery store, takes change and small bills. Oh, and they might have some emotional trauma because they sometimes cause arguments that lead to hitting with the crumb snatchers. Every time we ask who started the fight, it’s ALWAYS Not Me. Can we get some help for Not Me’s mental health issues as well?”
SSG: “Oh, I definitely think my supervisor is looking into mental health assistance even as we speak!”
ME: “Great! I have one more proof of evidence of Not Me, and after that you should really understand why we need assistance. Last year, Chief Money Maker and I came home to a giant hole in our ceiling and it was apparent someone had been in the attic and had fallen through the sheetrock into our bedroom. At the time, Gummi Bear crumb snatcher and Wolfy crumb snatcher – the two youngest – were the only one’s at home. At least we thought. Unbeknownst to us, Not Me was apparently here because when we asked who was in the attic and fell through the ceiling; both boys confirmed it was Not Me. That was really frustrating, and cost us quite a bit of time to repair the hole in our ceiling!”
I suddenly heard laughter and snickering in the background and wondered if my call was running into some sort of celebration that had been pre-planned. Perhaps a birthday celebration or a retirement ? Because this gentleman had been so helpful, I wanted to help him wrap up his call.
ME: “Sir, do you have enough to start the application process now?”
SSG: “Oh yes ma’am. We have plenty, and we certainly appreciate your call. We’ll be sending you something in the mail soon.”
I thanked the gentleman for his time and hung up the phone satisfied with the morning’s efforts. Once we obtain a social security number for Not Me, Chief Money Maker can claim them as a deduction on our taxes! Perhaps we could use the additional refund to add on a room for all the items Not Me leaves laying around the house, and all the single socks!
Postscript from Mama Bread Baker: This blog is based on a true story. Some details have been dramatized for literary effect, but the actions of Not Me are real. Really real. Just ask the crumb snatchers!
© 2011 CThacker