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Five surefire ways to kill time at the DMV

Save your tips for the best DMV in Denver, because I've already been. For most of us with day jobs, going there -- especially if you're from out of state and need a driver's license and to register your car -- involves going to two locations, taking a day off work and spending most of your day waiting. After you've called everyone you've been meaning to call back (don't forget your Mom!), read the newspaper and daydreamed about your ability to fly, how do you kill time? Try these five time-tested methods.

Not actually a DMV bathroom. The driver's license facility on West Mississippi actually has much, much more graffiti.
Not actually a DMV bathroom. The driver's license facility on West Mississippi actually has much, much more graffiti.

5. Visit the men's room and check out some art Memorize your favorite gang signs or graffiti tags. Then, when asked to sign your name on your temporary driver's license (the piece of paper you waited two hours in line for), scrawl it in the style of your favorite bathroom tagger.

Estimated Time Killed: Thirty minutes.

With solidarity, you can get through any trial.
With solidarity, you can get through any trial.

4. Ask "Why are you here?" Say this to the person next to you, almost as if you're in a maximum security prison, and you'll hear stories from new drivers, people who have lost their license, recent divorcees, newly married couples or the unlucky, temporarily homeless guy from California whose wallet was stolen while he was sleeping on the 16th Street Mall. Your also-defeated tone will surely strike a chord with your bench mate, and hopefully you can start up a conversation about how the DMV is ruining your day, but at least there's air-conditioning. No one likes a chipper, laughing-too-loudly DMV person. No one.

Estimated Time Killed: Fifteen to thirty minutes, depending on the natural chattiness of you or your neighbor.

Never a good sign.
Never a good sign.

3. Take your best guess Predict how many numbers will have been called in the time it takes you to walk to the car, listen to one complete song and walk back in the building. For each number that you are away from your guess, you must return to the car to listen to that many more songs. Don't think about getting your seat back, though. Someone has surely taken it and possibly made an impressive newspaper fort in the former space.

Estimated Time Killed: Five to twenty minutes.

Get off your phone.
Get off your phone.

2. Technology abstinence If you have a smartphone, see how long it takes you to go without actually using it, or touching it. For each minute you successfully don't fiddle with your iPhone, Droid or BlackBerry, allow yourself that many minutes to use the phone before attempting this technology fast again.

Estimated Time Killed: Minutes dependent on willpower; then double that number.

Excellent choice.
Excellent choice.

1. Read a book Take some real trash with you -- something you will enjoy reading and that will suck you in. Leave that status-symbol piece of non-fiction about economics and sociology at home today, friend. It's time to read something about vampires, rock stars or illegitimate children born of vampires and rock stars.

Estimated Time Killed: At least an hour.

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