Tax Time


It’s that self reflective time of year again that always comes before Easter. It’s tax time.

The on-line tax filing program asks its questions politely and directly. I admire that quality. What puts me off, though, is that it refers to me in the third person.

Does Shannon want to contribute $3.00 to the Presidential campaign? It will not change (her) tax or refund.

Who checks this box?  It raises too many questions. Where does the money come from then, if not the taxpayer?  What’s it used for? Flags and confetti? Some party you’ll never be invited to? Shannon will say no.

What is Shannon’s status?

The choices are pretty limited here. Nowhere is the option of Master of her own destiny. So she is left with choosing between Single or Head of Household. She asks herself, “Do I flit or do I swagger?” She’s never been much of a swaggerer. It’s something she’ll have to work on.

Does Shannon have any dependents?

Well, yes, the two she awakens every morning and sends to bed every night depend on her. What about the people she helps out on a regular basis to relieve their domestic burdens? Does the boy in carpool count? And what about the occasional or unexpected dependents?  There was the woman who took her arm so as not to slip on the ice. And other drivers, they depend on her to follow the rules, to stop when she’s supposed to stop, to go when she’s supposed to go.

Can anyone claim Shannon as a dependent?

Probably. There is a lot of kindness in the world. Shannon depends on that. Funny, there is no mention of co-dependents.

Is Shannon blind?

Yes, she is. But she does have moments of clarity.

Did Shannon have any farm income?

No, although she’d like to have a farm some day. Not a hobby farm because it seems to her that farms cannot be considered hobbies. One cannot set down a farm on the floor beside the arm chair or leave the farm on the dining room table before going off to bed. One cannot leave a farm in the shed when they lock up shop.

And what’s all this about railroads? In her whole life she has known only one single person who works for the railroad. She suspects he works alone. It must be a very special job to warrant a shout out on the tax form.

Moving right along, we come to charitable donations.

Did Shannon make any monetary donations to charity?

Did Shannon make any non monetary donations to charity?

This is the part of the form where taxpayers get to feel all righteous, to reassure themselves that they did learn to share when they were in kindergarten.

When did Shannon acquire the goods she gave to charity?

What was the original cost of the goods?

This one is a stumper. Shannon will have to come back to itIn fact, she’s going to log off now.

Are you sure you want to quit?

Absolutely. (It’s too taxing)

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