Nathan the Mover

Every two months or so I get an e-mail for someone with my name, and from what I can judge about the inquiries, he is apparently a furniture mover in California. Whatever business card or napkin he accidentally put my e-mail address on – he has not made much effort to correct it. I’ve held my tongue even though I’m sure, somewhere out there, he thinks he’s better than me just because he can maneuver a right-hand turn in something larger than a Toyota Tacoma. The latest e-mail was from someone giving rates for vans and the required insurance to rent them. No one tells me what insurance I need (besides my state government), and I was bored at work, so I was forced to respond:

Dear Sydney “Penske” Larson,

First off, I don’t remember talking to you, but that is not necessarily unusual, so I’m sure it was a nice conversation, and I appreciate you getting back to me with some info it seems I may have asked for.

The way it looks, I would not mind renting several vans from you for many years. Do you not have yearly rates or 5-year rates? Is there any charge for removing any carpeting I might install?

I do have some concerns about the insurance requirements. I, of course, do not have any insurance at all, much less a “minimum combined single limit of $1,000,000 for tractors and $750,000 for straight trucks”. How do I go about getting something like this? Are
there driving tests involved or do I also need an official license? That could be somewhat of a problem – let’s just say I ran someone over once… but at least one of us was drunk! Ha, ha, jk – it was only him (wink, wink). No really, I’m joking, you would have to be crazy to rent vans to someone who admitted to alcoholism.


To my surprise he actually wrote back and informed me that “legally, you do need an official license to drive the vehicle, as you would need driving any other motorized automobile/truck on CA road’s and highways”.

Hey Penske,

Hmmm, it seems we may be getting closer to an oral agreement (I, of course, will not “do written contracts” as I have had my fair share of hassles with those in the past). The carpet could be a deal breaker, but I could probably rip it out myself. And while I assume you do a standard inspection of the vehicles upon my return of them, I must insist a forensic-style black light NOT be used.

I did not realize you came by my facility… I’m a little creeped out. Did we meet? Also, I’m suprised you would assume I have insurance on the vehicles parked in the lot, or that they are even mine. You know what they say you do when you “assume” – you make a real asshole out of yourself. It’s all good, though, because I have plenty of insurance. I am not sure if I have a “certificate”, so I will need you to send me (via postal mail) a certificate just exactly the way you need it except for the name part empty – just so I can see EXACTLY what you are looking for – then I can go through my filing system and find it. Sometimes, dealing with all this beuracratic mumbo-jumbo so the feds can have their goddamn paperwork can be such a hassle. This next part is a joke because my brother told me once its illegal to talk shit against the government over e-mail, but sometimes it makes me want to fire bomb a DMV.

Unfortunately, as you probably know, it seems the only legal way to protest our government is not to file taxes.

Sorry, I am going off on a tangent. Talk to you soon, Syd!


Well, he wrote back again informing me that “standard procedure for all rentals require a ‘rental agreement contract’ (his quotes). I wish you the best of luck with your business.”


Why does this always happen to me?!