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Life is only what you wonder.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Show Me The Money

It all started, innocently enough, we me doing my (and the husband's) taxes.

I'm terrible at math, don't have a head for numbers at all (if I lost my telephone book I'd be SOL, 'cause I don't have anyone's number memorized) and I barely squeaked by passing algebra in high school.
I can do math (simple math like adding, subtracting, multiplying, and division) with a calculator, and I could do it with a paper and pencil if I have enough time, I just don't care for it.

I never got the point of algebra, anyway.
If you have 10 apples, Leon and Chico each give you 3 apples and Tyrone and Rufus each give you 12 apples, how many apples do you have? That's addition, which I understand. (I don't understand why Leon, Chico, Tyrone, and Rufus are giving away apples, though, but that's neither here nor there.)
With algebra you get an equation like:
(2 x Y) + (24/6) = 28
and you have to figure out what Y is.
It hurts my head.

But I digress.

Taxes aren't that difficult to do.
They give you a handy dandy instruction book and all you need are the forms, your w-2s, a pencil and a pen, and a stapler to staple your W-2 to the form. Oh, yeah, and a calculator.

So I did 'em. Took me about a half-hour to do both me and the husband's State and Federal.
So I'm at work, and everyone's talking about their taxes.

"I haven't gotten around to taking mine to H&R Block yet."
"I took mine to Jackson-Hewitt."
I'm getting my brother-in-law to do mine. He's an accountant."
"I did mine yesterday," I say.
"Where'd you take yours, Jimmy?"
"I didn't take them anywhere," I replied, "I did them myself. Mine and G.'s. Took about a half an hour."
Stunned silence. Like it's a big deal or something.
Jimmy did his own taxes! Oh My God! Alert the media!

I'm not about to go to a tax preparer, who's going to take a big chunk of money out for doing what I could easily do myself, you know? I know if you go to H&R block you get your refund the very same day, but there's no hurry. I can wait and get everything that's coming to me.

Well, when word got around that Jimmy can do taxes, everyone was coming around asking me to to their taxes for them.
So I'm going to do them. Partially because I'm a nice guy, but mostly because I'm charging a nominal fee for my services.

There's no such thing as a free lunch.