I just wrote my yearly check to Tax Man. Every year, he cometh and he taketh. After meeting with the CPA, my dad said, "Welcome to the Big Leagues. It sucks, doesn't it?"
Indeed. Indeed it does.
I try to get creative in my taxes, but I get squashed every time.
We can deduct our internet and cell phones- because they are mostly used for business, but other things- well, I can pretend all day long, but pool supplies are not a deduction.
"What's this [$large number] expense, Wife?" The Money Man asked when we sat down to meet.
"That? Oh, right. That." I should have just put a big X through it, but I thought maybe... maybe it will fly.
"That's where we bought the golf cart."
He looks at me.
I stare back.
The red pen is dangling in the waiting to strike.
No deduction this year for an electric vehicle. Score one for Big Oil. Zero for the Little Guy.
A few minutes late, another question.
"Can I deduct my stove?"
His head never raises from scouring my papers, rather just his eyes... along with his eyebrows.
"I'm sorry?" The Money Man asks.
Deadpan. This is negotiations, right?
"My stove," I say- holding my chest out and raising my chin. Not to enhance my bosom, rather to exude confidence. That's all negotiations are, right?
This is not a negotiation. There is no gray area when it comes to taxes. Like death, you either are or you aren't.
"Oh, okay-- well, perhaps you should..." a shuffle... I grab the paper and the red pen and strike something else down the line.
"I guess that's a 'no' on the fridge and freezer?"
He laughs and says YES.
Two more scratches...
"And the dishwasher?"
Another scratch without waiting for an answer.
I elect to not ask about the hardwood floors and crumple that sticky note before tossing it in the waste basket over his shoulder.
I sit on my hands as he continues to click away at his computer. I twiddle my thumbs and stare at pictures on his wall, making awkward conversation in my head about nothing.
Taxes make me twitchy.
Because you don't want to Hack Off the IRS.
More number crunching, more nervously reciting the alphabet backwards in my head. More questions.
"Brother is a client. We took his kids on a Disney Cruise. Can I...."
"Okay, just checking."
The number pops up that we owe. I choke on the throw up in my mouth.
"Before we finish- have you done anything to help with the energy efficiency of your home?"
"Not the stove?"
"No. Not the stove." The Money Man says.
"Not the dishwasher, the fridge or the freezer?"
"No. Not the dishwasher, the fridge or the freezer."
"The only other improvements we made on energy were two large windows and an air conditioner, but I doubt that'll be covered."
Score two for the Little Man.
The Tax Man Cometh and he Taketh, less two windows and an air conditioner.
I'll take it. And so will The Tax Man. Until next year.