Friday, March 22, 2013

2012 Taxes - finally finished

     I have to admit that I am very proud and happy that I finally finished our income taxes.  And it wasn't easy.  First of all, I had to call the IRS, several months ago, to ask for the printed instructions and forms.  I asked for the forms that I thought I needed and, after a delay because they weren't ready early, the forms and booklets arrived.  I put off, as long as I could, even looking at those horrors but decided to tackle them on Tuesday.  However, before I started, I thought I would start the car - it had been cold and the car had been idle for a while.  Intuition is a wonderful thing.  The car went "click."  And then click again.  So, I called AAA, got a hot shot, drove the car to the agency, got the state inspection, oil change, and a new battery.  All within 2 hours.  Tuesday was shot as far as the taxes go.

     So, I started again on Wednesday.  This time, I could not think of anything to interrupt my work.  I began with the first page, the first line, and had no problems until I had to fill out the social security worksheet which always drives me nuts.  Maybe I got it right, maybe not.  I'll know once I hear from the IRS.  Then, I went on to the profit and loss from short and long term capital gains.  Not that we had much to report - a balance of zero, but, in order to report that zero, first I had to fill out a form that the IRS had not sent and move the information from this missing form to the one that the IRS did send.  Up to the third floor, to try to print out the missing form.  It was mostly acceptable and I added a few ruler-drawn lines to complete it.

     By this time, I had gone through half a dozen Tums and yelled at as many inanimate objects as I could.  Edgar is used to that and knew that I was not yelling at him.

     Now, I had to send a small check.  But, I also needed another form to enclose with the check which the IRS had omitted sending so - back again to the third floor for another go round with the printed and the ruler.

     Then to the estimated taxes for 2013.  Every time I use the EFTS system, I forget what I am supposed to do and I usually keep the Tums bottle handy.  This time, however, after only the third call, I was helped by a very, very patient and friendly woman.  When I asked her please to stay with me and walk me through every step, she said that she would not leave me until I was satisfied and finished.  She was wonderful.  She helped me fill in every blank that needed filling in and I thanked her and then took time to tell her supervisor how helpful, patient, and wonderful she was.

     I didn't think that I had accomplished anything terrific until I spoke to two different PhD's who told me that they could not figure out the taxes (both had courses in accounting as undergraduates) and that they hired accountants for their taxes.  Furthermore, the accountants complained to them that the rules were so complicated that, sometimes, even they did not know what to do.

     Hooray for me.  I went to Staples, made copies, and then to the post office to mail off the return and the check, and now I have to hope that the mail gets through and the IRS can read my writing.

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