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True to form

Our 2019 taxes are finished, here on pandemic-revised Tax Day.

We’ve always done our taxes ourselves, but this year I was planning to hand everything over to a tax accountant. Had an appointment back in March and everything, and then we went on lockdown and the date moved to July and I promptly went into denial mode for a few months. When I pulled my head out of my rear, I realized it was too late to work with a pro.

I’ve elevated procrastination to a high art, and figured that our taxes, while always a little weird, wouldn’t take me too long, because I have been doing this for years and things never change all that much, so, like, a few hours and I’d be done. I decided that the weekend before Tax Day would be fine.

Saturday morning, my mug of coffee and I sat down to tackle my modest stack of forms to be entered, and things were breezing along, until I realized I was missing a few documents. I couldn’t retrieve these documents without a multiple step verification process and sprint up and down the stairs to find which device had received the magic code. And then, the printer wouldn’t talk to the computer.

In hindsight, I should have either added some booze to my coffee, or walked away from the desk until I could regain some objectivity. BUT NO. No, I decided to take the technical difficulties as a personal affront, and rebuffed all suggestions and offers for assistance as an attack. There was drama, and there was no solving it, mostly because I was in the mood to be in a snit. Not my finest moment. I eventually stomped upstairs to take a nap, and left the computer and printer to think about what they had done. I sure showed ’em.

Despite considering myself to be a peace-loving, level-headed optimist, I have always had this pissy, tantrum-throwing part of my personality when things aren’t working out the way I planned. Not the big stuff – I’m good in a crisis. It’s the little stuff, where I have generally had some level of expertise, that can absolutely launch me into irrational territory. Like the birthday cake that I made for my daughter that cracked in half when I was attempting to frost it, and ended up both ugly and not particularly tasty. Or finishing a set of knitted hand warmers and discovering that one is exactly one pattern repeat shorter than the other. Or when the damn printer won’t print.

Three days later, with lots of fits, starts, stops, biting sarcasm aimed at unwitting family members who may have looked at me funny, and a totally exhausted printer ink supply, the taxes are done. I should be relieved and feel accomplished, but I’m still percolating with some unspent rage. I’ve been muttering passive aggressively at my desk for an hour.

Did you actually just ask me what the plan is for dinner? Did you not see me DOING TAXES FOR DAYS? Maybe you want me to make you one of those ugly cakes again, too?

I’m going to go soak my head in a long shower, to wash off the naughties.