Monday, March 2, 2015

Tax Time

Is a candy bar tax deductible? Perhaps. Depends on why it was purchased and what was done with it. For me, I’m pretty sure I wasn’t wining and dining anyone. That just doesn’t sound like me. Fairly convinced I didn’t give it away as charity either. Pretty sure I ate it. So, I’m thinking it’s probably not deductible.

But other items on the receipt are. Maybe. I’m never sure until I go through the items one by one, deciphering the store’s shorthand and non-standard abbreviations to determine what the product is. Once everything has been identified, it’s usually not too difficult to decide what’s tax deductible and what is not.

As I’m sure you guessed, I’ve been busy doing taxes. Sorting through a year’s worth of receipts and statements. For hours. Adding numbers. And then re-adding the same numbers. Hoping to come up with the same total at least twice. Of course, it doesn’t help when I discover I’ve included something I shouldn’t have. Or, placed it in the wrong category. Or, worse, take a break for a few minutes and find two more receipts.

Actually, now that we have computers to do our adding and virtually everything else these days, it’s far easier to tackle jobs like this. I guess you could say taxes are less taxing than they once were. The computer can take care of all the math; the adding, the subtracting, the re-figuring, etc. And, accurately too!

Unfortunately, that accuracy is totally dependant on what is entered. And when a human is entering the numbers, there’s always room for error. Especially, when that human is me. (Yes, despite the assertions of some, I assure you, I am quite human).

So, I spend a lot of time double checking; comparing what is on the screen with the paper on my desk. And then, I spend even more time correcting things. But, I figure it’s worth it. I’ve heard the IRS doesn’t have much of a sense of humor about inaccuracies in tax returns. Mistakes are not viewed as an acceptable excuse for a failure to pay the correct amount of tax due.

All in all, the project hasn’t been too time consuming. What’s a few hours of my time? Or days? I’ll just consider it my patriotic contribution. That doesn’t make the idea of paying my taxes any easier but it does make it slightly less frustrating.

Thankfully, I’m almost done. Probably would’ve been finished by now but I had to take a few minutes to write this blog post! So, I gave up for the night. There’s always tomorrow. Right now, it seems I’m hungry. Apparently, I worked up an appetite. Think I’ll remedy that with a candy bar!

Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook and paperback on iTunes, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Diesel Books, and Smashwords, or at Amazon Profile - Bruce A. Borders also serves as the Vice-President of Rave Reviews Book Club.


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