Thursday, March 18, 2010


I've done my taxes.

I think I was in seventh grade when I discovered that if you do a thing early, you get the double bonus of 1) dispersing the black cloud of deadline and 2) feeling like a productivity badass.

If there is such a thing as a productivity badass; it is possible that productivity -buzzing around getting things done, busy-bee style- actually precludes badasshood.

As does, quite probably, the use of the word "precludes."

But never mind. I tend to work ahead of deadline. Over the years, this has had myriad consequences, some positive (sleepy, novel-soaked reading periods & finals weeks) and some negative (completing an entire social psychology group project paper only to have some stats punk rerun the data and come up with something different. THANKS MATT. Yes, I still remember you.)

So I made plans to do my taxes on March 31st, and ended up doing them on March 15th. The gates of hell did not open. But neither did the houris of paradise sidle up and offer to clean my bathroom (WHERE ARE MY BATHROOM-CLEANING HOURIS?!). Instead, my due has arrived in the form of a series of gentle, widely spaced reflections on taxes in general and my taxes in particular.
  • I hold tax-paying to be generally good; it funds libraries, and schools, and other nice things. However, I was a lot fonder of paying my taxes when I did not owe $3,000 to the IRS.
  • I still cannot fathom how it is possible to owe $3,000 to the IRS. How did this happen? Did I fail to light a candle in front of a small shrine of taxation located in the northwest corner of my most southeasterly room, that candle being of middling height as measured by the International Code of Candles (wax depreciation rates as of 2010) published yearly in Timbuktu by three blind monks who beat, into sheets of brass, the document in braille, thereafter immersing themselves and a small, green-hatted woodchuck in a vat of balsamic vinegar? (Candle width at individual discretion).
  • The above was complicated. The tax code is more complicated.
  • I work for a school and am payed with tax dollars. Does this mean that when I pay taxes, I am paying myself? Because that would make me feel better.
  • Filling out forms is soothing. I like filling out forms. The requirements are clear; you have only to satisfy them.
  • I wish life were more like filling out forms.
  • I also wish that I did not owe $3,000 to the IRS.
  • If you are self-employed, there is something you should know about called quarterly estimated taxes.
  • I am not a badass.
  • Dagnabit.

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