The Trouble with Taxes Is They Are So Taxing

Income taxes should be done by now. Necessity is the mother of completion (okay, okay, it’s really invention), and I’m going to get some righteous bucks back, and, God knows, I need them, but the motivation required to do taxes quickly and industriously is a virtue I lack.

I chip away. One morning I go through all the business records I keep during the year — expense and income logs, mileage, columns of monetary numbers in a plethora of useful categories – and get them all tidy, totaled and ready to plug (like tomato plants). A couple mornings later, I actually start with the online service, beginning with something easy like importing the previous year’s figures, and maybe even filling in the W-2’s, a task I won’t likely have next year.

This week I attacked the problem in earnest, which, graded by my personal curve, still isn’t all that earnest. I afforded the problem modest attention, but, in my defense, it is February, and I don’t think I’ve ever filed my taxes before the beginning of April. As noted, on my curve, a 67 is an A-minus.

I was almost ready to file two days ago, and then fate intervened in the form of a glitch that not only I cannot solve but, to date, nor can the employees of a large company who are charged with solving the problems of “non-tax professionals” such as me.

Before I can electronically file – and electronically filing is necessary to be electronically refunded, which is, by means of, uh, electronics, considerably faster – I have to solve this “issue.” It’s a very small issue, one that I have fixed roughly as many times as the Energizer Bunny has gone and gone in the past two days, and still the “issue” comes up every time. I’ve had the nice Textile Support lady assure me we’d “fix this right up,” only to have her eventually apologize for telling me to hit a tab that eliminated lots of information I had already entered, and then give me a “case number” and promise I would be getting a call from “someone who knows a whole lot more about this than I do.” I then went back to trying, by means of using magic words such as “abracadabra,” for the umpteenth time (I’m an umpteenaire, by the way) to get the “issue” to disappear, which it quite obviously is never going to do without professional help.

I called again this morning, only to find out that my “issue” is being thoroughly explored by computer druids on another floor of the building, the location of which is undetermined. Perhaps I’ll get a call from Vercingetorix*.

So my taxes are being held hostage, and the ransom is what had heretofore been known as “a refund.”

As soon as I get through this, I think I’m going to give healthcare.org a shot.

*He was a Druid chieftain of a Gallic tribe, though sadly executed by the Romans in 46 B.C. and thus unavailable to remedy my tax problem.

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