For our God is a consuming fire.

-Hebrews 12:29


Sunday, April 5, 2009

Tax ASSessments

It’s Spring! I’m back in the DC area after a great visit with my folks in Florida. A BEAUTIFUL Sunday afternoon, worthy of t-shirts and sandals also deserves an alfresco mimosa brunch. I happen to be spending it in the H&R Block trying to take advantage of their free tax return review.

Apparently Misters. I, R & S feel that we owe them over $3000 for 2008 taxes! I have always done my own taxes, and while single, employed by only one job and relatively asset-less – this was a straightforward task. Since getting married in 2006, I’ve had 4 jobs, moved 4 times, purchased, sold and purchased again a home, and oh yeah…acquired a ‘joint filer’. The tax return process has become exponentially more challenging. I remember spending literally eight hours one Saturday in 2007 trying to determine the proper procedures for my last year’s taxes.

One would think this sole experience would prompt me to pony up the cash and pay a professional for their expertise. My pride and frugality have forbid me from doing so. This is the first year we’ve ever owed money, and I am chapped. Heaven forfend that Bernard Madoff pay back in full the monies he stole from thousands, or that AIG hotshots don’t receive this year’s hundred thousand dollar bonus. But the rest of us poor schlubs who are working honestly and hard, volunteering time in the community and funds to churches and charities, merely trying to enjoy life within their means, we are the ones stuck with the bill. *sigh*

“Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and unto God the things that are God’s.” Seems like this year Caesar requires a few extra thousand than anticipated and also my pristine Sunday afternoon. Perhaps this is not the most upstanding attitude to have. But I will feel gladly erroneous and smugly validated if the H&R Block peeps can uncover a mistake in my return, and report the IRS will be sending me a check instead. Fingers remain crossed whilst in the waiting room.

(PS. I called before coming and the purported wait was zero. I’ve been sitting here 45 minutes so far. Detecting a trend this week for poor patience skills (see urgent care fiasco and now this), I’m going to end this entry, put away the laptop and do some yoga breathing. I’m not sure a lower blood pressure will affect the outcome of my padding Caesar’s pockets, but I might enjoy my upcoming mimosa more. Yes, I’m grabbing the husband after this and enjoying a mid-afternoon cocktail post-haste.)

(PPS. We owe the money. My silver lining is that I've managed to 'successfully' manipulate my way through the Internal Revenue Code maze. I'm sure I'd rather have the cash, but wasn't consulted on the matter.)

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