Commuter Chronicles #8: License Plate Scrabble


Arizona and California both allow drivers, for a fee, to customize their license plate numbers.  As a result, I can’t go more than 30 seconds without seeing a personalized license plate number on the road.

You’d think personalized license plate numbers would be tailor made for the twitter generation, since you have a maximum of 7 characters to convey a word or phrase.

Yet, often times I find myself puzzled as to what the license is trying to say.  So I like playing a game called License Plate Scrabble when I’m either sitting on the bus or carpooling into work.

It’s basically Scrabble in reverse. You get seven characters already lined up in order but your task is to figure out what the characters spell out.

Ready to play? Try to make a guess before you read my interpretation.

Plate 1: O H 2 B D R S

My interpretation: At first I thought “oh, 2 bedrooms.” Who knows, maybe the driver is a realtor? Then I looked at it and guessed “oh to be Dr. S”.  Because who knows, the driver could be jealous of someone named Dr. S. Finally I settled on “Oh to be doctors.”

Plate 2: U 2 4 E V ER

My interpretation: This one is pretty obvious – U2 Forever. Must be a super-fan. I mean, I like some of their songs but not enough to pay for a customized plate professing my undying devotion to them.

Plate 3: R O U T _ 6 6

My interpretation: Route 66.  I bet R O U T E 6 6 is already taken. What if one day R O U T _ 6 6 drives up next to R O U T E 6 6 in traffic? Awkward!

Plate 4: C R U Z N 6 6

My interpretation: Cruising 66.  Maybe you and R O U T _ 6 6 should get together and commiserate over losing out on R O U T E 6 6.  Maybe you can be friends? Yes?

Plate 5: I W R K 4 M E

My interpretation: I work for me. Well – G O O D 4 U. Because working for “the man” stinks!

Plate 6: W I L D C A T (on a University of Arizona license plate)

My interpretation: Bleah! Well, this one is self explanatory. We get it, you went to U of A. Whoop de doo. Next please.

Plate 7: S U N D V L (on an Arizona State University license plate)

My interpretation: Sundevil! Boo-yeah now we’re talking! Let’s just end the game here on a high note.


9 responses to “Commuter Chronicles #8: License Plate Scrabble”

  1. “Oh to be Doctors” was my thought, too. But it took the same brain process that you did to get to that solution. Great post! Now I am going to be looking at everyone’s license plate. LOL! 🙂


  2. Yeah, that first one took me awhile to get anything out of it. I might do this again. I stuck to relatively easy plates this time, but if this post gets a good response I’ll find harder ones to decipher.


  3. Thanx for the stop at my site, and the comment. Still very small-time at blogging but slowly gaining followers. Now I need to figure out exactly where those map co-ordinates are. Neighbor owned a Buick 88 so he tried to get TOMS 88. Local plates were like ABC 123. DMV clerk told him he couldn’t have three letters and three numbers. I told him to go back and explain that O was a letter. He got a different clerk, and was given the plate. A year later he bought a Toyota and handed in the $150 plates. Don’t know which was dumber.


    1. Thanks for checking out my blog. The map coordinates are for Phoenix, AZ.

      LOL – I had a friend in high school that ran out and requested INADAZE for her plate. She was a bit of an airhead so it was fitting.

      Yeah, that is one of the big drawbacks of these plates – you sink money into them and then you’re pretty much out the money if you get rid of the car.


  4. Lol, keep thinking I’m gonna have my own license plate when I pass my test, but they’re epically expensive here in Blighty.


    1. Over here they are $25 to apply for one. Then you have to pay a $25 renewal fee every year to keep it. I’d rather have the $25.


      1. Lol, over here they range up to £1000 depending on what you want!


      2. Yikes! LOL – I guess it depends on how badly you want your own plate. I’m fine with random numbers and letters. I guess it puts it into perspecitve – no wonder so many people over here have personalized plates. They are relatively cheap compared to other places.

        I even checked California DMV – they charge more than Arizona but still a lot cheaper than your area of the world. In California, depending on what plate you choose it costs anywhere from $49-$98 to apply for one and anwhere from $30 – $78 yearly to renew the plate.


      3. Everything’s more expensive over here, lol. Makes me wanna move over to the States!



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