Saturday, April 02, 2011

A Bit of "Me" Time

I actually have a day completely off. No reason to drive anywhere, no to-do list; just a day to spread my butt on the couch. Woohoo!

Yesterday was International Weirdo Day at work. The first one was an old one-armed man, driving himself naturally, who didn't want to spend money on a lawyer and asked me to help fill out his divorce papers. When I told him as politely as I could that there was no way in hell I was doing that, he demanded that I tell him who would. Um, a lawyer maybe?

Weirdo number two was another old man lugging a hockey bag around full of stuff he was selling; queen sheet sets, remote control toy helicopters, etc. He became rather pissed when I told him no thanks; I was all set on helicopters and sheets purchased from dubious sources.

Weirdo number three was one of our fraudulent tax clients. Imagine Chris Rock if Chris cut his hair with hedge trimmers and lived on a nothing but meth and you get a good picture of how this guy looks and acts. He was coming back with a great deal for me: a whole trunk-full of pizzas from Dominoes (which were oddly enough in Papa John's pizza boxes; I guess Dominoes ran out...) for $20. I told him no thanks; I was about to leave and I didn't have any money anyway. He stood there staring at me for nearly a minute, then finally left, also pissed to the teeth. What gives? Just because I bathe regularly and wear a tie doesn't mean I have my pockets stuffed with $100 bills to buy random crap with.

Other than the weirdos, work is getting slower by the day. As of yesterday afternoon around 2pm, the entire office had managed to complete exactly one tax return for the entire week. The upside is I'm getting a lot of reading done and getting paid for it. The other upside is that I'm nearly 100% certain I'll be out on my own next tax season; I'm getting that together to the extent that I can while still working. Once tax season ends on April 18th, I'll be motivated to kick it into high gear given that I won't have a fall-back next year. The real trick will be finding office space. There's a lot of empty places around here, but based on the prices I'm seeing, you'd think empty office space was at a premium. I'm sure it's just a matter of looking around. Or maybe everyone around here really is delusional.

Speaking of delusional, does anyone sincerely believe the government is making money from owning General Motors? To paraphrase another honest politician, I guess it depends on what the meaning of "is" is:

In Obama's world, success means taxpayers only lost as much as $84 billion.

There are two possibilities; our president is either delusional or he is a liar. Given that he's a politician, do I really need to say which I think it is?

More delusion: we can continue to live our current lifestyle using only renewable energy sources:

Eco-campaigners who built a classroom powered by the sun believed they were paving the way for the future.

...But there is snag - its solar panels only provide enough energy to power a few lightbulbs.

As a result the classroom is bitterly cold and uninhabitable for lessons.

To begin with, whoever wrote this article clearly doesn't understand the different between photovoltaic panels and solar heating panels, unless he thought they were going to use electric heat run by photovoltaic panels. Given the level of delusion (and lack of basic math skills; calculating the amount of sun you have at any given site and what you can do with it is hardly rocket science), that may be the case here. Or just the usual lack of basic understanding we've come to expect from the media.

The cynic in me says the contractor likely knew full well that there was no way the thing would ever be usable and took the £25,000, minus a kick-back to the school official that signed off on the project, and ran. Looking at the photo, I don't see any possible way it could have ever worked as a classroom.

A study of who is most likely to cheat on their taxes:

The typical American tax cheat is male, single and under the age of 45.

I'm sure the local demographics skew things a bit, but the typical tax cheat in the office I work in is as likely to be a married Mexican couple working in the US illegally as a young single male. Both are cheating for the same reason: refundable tax credits. Get rid of those, I'm willing to bet that billions in fantasy income will evaporate from the economy over-night, and illegal Mexicans can stop wasting everyone's time and money, and go back to not filing tax returns like in the old days. I really need to do a post on tax reform one of these days.

Well, Debbie should be calling in a few minutes to tell me to get dinner started. Vacation is over.

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