So taxes are due again. There’s a reason death and taxes are so linked, and it’s not just because they’re both so reliable. Though, if you think about it, death only comes around once. But anyway, if you’re like me and you put things off until the absolute last second and then, when the last second pokes its head in the door and says “Hey, I’m here!” you throw a pillow at it and tell it to go away, then you’ll understand me when I complain to you about my deep and abiding hatred of all things tax-related.
I don’t just hate income tax, either. I resent sales tax. I seethe inwardly about restaurant tax. I mean, these things are supposed to go toward…I don’t know…keeping the roads paved and regulating businesses and stuff. I’m cool with the businesses getting regulated, probably because I don’t run a business. But the roads in my area are not particularly well-maintained, which makes me wonder where my money is going and why I’m paying it in the first place. It’s getting to the point where, when I see footage on television of one of those expensive fighter jets, I’ll shake my fist at the set and scream “You’re welcome!” Not really, but inside, you know?
But income taxes hold a special place in my personal hell. All the other kinds of taxes are at least light on paperwork, which is probably why I don’t make more of a fuss about them. Income taxes, though, I have to get all kinds of receipts and forms and statements for, and then I have to calculate my taxes several different ways so I know what kind of deduction I should take, and then I have to calculate them again because it seems like, even though I’ve got the same information to plug in, I get a different result every time. Then I give up and go online to TurboTax or some other program and shell out money so that a computer program can tell me what an idiot I’m being and get all the math right.
And while we’re on the subject, does anyone out there understand tax math? It’s not like any other math I’ve ever encountered. It’s worse than trying to figure out who owes what on a shared phone bill. It’s like the rules of math get sucked into some kind of IRS wormhole so they get warped and distorted, and then when they come through the other side, 2+2 suddenly does not equal 4. I don’t understand.
I can face attempted burglary, attempted mugging, drunken groping in bars, crap at work, crap at home, crap randomly around town, and I’m like, whatevs. You’re gonna have to try harder than that. But taxes make me want to crawl into bed and wait until my mommy makes it go away, or maybe does it for me like she used to do with my science projects. She can make an awesome diorama. But, since I doubt the IRS people will accept a diorama in place of my tax return, I’m stuck in Grownupland with everyone else, with a desk full of papers, a bottle of painkillers, and one of those big, clunky calculators they use on TV when they want to show Serious Calculation being done. Is it too late to secede from adulthood?