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Pryor Creek and waited outside with a number of others for the doors to open. In about thirty minutes a fiftyish woman showed up, unlocked the door, and pointed to a yellow pad lying on a table inside the door. I assumed she was a volunteer. "Sign your name and you will be called in the order that they are listed," she said, authoritatively. I signed my name, second on the list, took a seat along with four or five others and waited for a government representative to arrive. Later, a time that seemed more like an hour past the time I was told someone would be there, a short slightly overweight blonde came in and played the part of being in charge. She was deathly serious at first, but then began to smile and attempted to make everyone feel comfortable. A minute later another person came in, a black man wearing a coat and tie, standing over six feet tall and weighing in at about two hundred pounds. He carried a small briefcase as did the woman and he followed her into a side room and sat down at a small wood desk with his back to a window on the right that overlooked the driveway. The woman took the desk on the left, facing toward the window and across the room from the man. Betty, her birthday being nine months before mine, told me she was up there the previous year. She indicated to me that she was taken care of promptly; that she was given the exact amount she would receive, the day her checks would start, the whole ball of wax. She said a woman typed it into a computer right there in front of her and showed her everything. Disappointedly, my experience wasn't nearly so straightforward. What happened was this. The two government representatives disappeared inside the side room but then reappeared in a couple of minutes with a name on their lips. The blonde called the first name on the list: a gray and humped over, feeble, elderly woman, who I overheard to say, was there to get a new social security card. The black man emerged from the door and called my name. Returning to his desk, he motioned to a chair across from him and started asking me a series of questions: where I worked, where I was born, my birth date, etc. and etc. All he had in front of him was a yellow pad similar to the one we signed our names out front and a red No. 2 lead pencil. The man was friendly enough, and a minute or two later, no more than five minutes at the most, he ripped the page off and told me he would be in touch. He said that then reached down to insert the paper in his briefcase. I was a somewhat startled that it was over so soon. At least that was my take at the moment. And to make matters worse, I didn't remember him asking me for my name. "Did you get my name on that paper?" I asked him. He froze for a moment, displaying a puzzled look on his face then retrieved the paper, glanced over the page briefly then responded, "No, what is your name?" I told him and he wrote it down then started toward his briefcase again, but paused when I asked him if he had my social security number. As before, he glanced over the piece of paper before responding.

Understanding Annuities For Dummies  

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