Thousands of vanity license plates rejected in TN - KAIT-Jonesboro, AR-News, weather, sports

Thousands of vanity license plates rejected in TN

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MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC-TV) - Have you ever seen a car's vanity license plate and wondered what on earth the driver was thinking?

Consider this, the plates you see are just the ones approved by the Department of Motor Vehicles. There are thousands that do not make it through the approval process. Action News 5 obtained a list of those vanity plate rejects.

Depending on who sees the license plate, some have meaning and some do not.

Cheryl Mesler owns Burke's Books. In Latin, Lego means read. So, to Cheryl, seeing a license plate that reads LEGO might make sense.

That is one example of a perfectly appropriate vanity plate. But there are thousands of others that do not fit the bill.

"Someone put DOODOO," said comedian Katrina Coleman. "I didn't know 4-year-olds had cars."

On the application for a specialty plate, the state "reserves the right to refuse to issue objectionable combinations."

The list of recent rejections in Tennessee is 26 pages, four columns apiece, with 46 requests in each column. The list includes rich selections like KOTEX, TAMPAX, EXLAX. Others include REDRUM, GETNUDE, TRYPOT, RAWBUNS, 34ZCUPS, SMELLU, and you get the picture.

When stand-up comedian Katrina Coleman saw the list, she had a few things to say:

"PVERT. Imagine picking up your kid from school."

"2FNFAST. OLDFART. That's adorable."

"OBARF. Like, if that's not a valley girl."

"Someone sat at home and said, 'Alright, I'm going to go register the car. Give me the form, printed it very neatly... UCKFU. That is not a martial art that I know about."

Outside the Shelby County tag office, reaction to the rejected plates is mixed.

"That would show you don't have no respect for others, especially kids," said Bill Ashmore.

"It wouldn't bother me at all," said Ron Blackburn.

Several of the vanity plate rejects cannot be said on television without a subsequent visit from the FCC, but use your imagine. Body parts, sex acts, no matter how they are spelled... they will be rejected. As well as TOYLIT, USTONED, HITLER, and OMYGAWD.

With 26 letters, 10 numbers, plus the blank to choose from, and seven spaces to put them in, what is the total number of possible license plate combinations?

"Nobody has ever asked me such a question," said Ali Mostafavi, LeMoyne Owen Mathematics Department.

Mostafavi says the equation is complicated, but eventually equals...

"A large number. Very large number."

Most of those choices will pass inspection, but if you really are just 22HOT4U, be prepared to wind up with whatever the state assigns you at random.

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