This early october of twenty- twelve
I learn that the state of New Jersey
has passed a new law: no smiling
while in the department of motor vehicles.
You would think, given most folks’
experience in this usually cantankerous
atmosphere this rule would be superfluous.
But, you see, when they snap your photo,
if you smile the new face-recognition
software might not recognize you.
It works by comparing a master license
image to subsequently collected shots
to make sure they match up.
That is, smiling or –god forbid–any odd
or exaggerated gesture could be problematic,
making it more difficult for the software
to recognize your everyday self going about
your everyday business at the post office,
the bank, in a store or on the street where
you’re not expected to be smiling very much.