Wednesday, April 15, 2015


(Originally published 4/15/13.)

Thomas Paine once said something like "Give me ambiguity or give me something else".  Do you think he was referring to the tax code?

I had written a post for today but my accountant screwed up & I had to send it in to the IRS.  This one was written by Dave Barry several years ago & it's still pretty funny:

"IT'S TAX TIME. I know this because I'm staring at documents that make no sense to me, no matter how many beers I drink.

Take, for example, my Keogh Plan. If you're wondering what a Keogh Plan is, the technical answer is: Beats me. All I know is, I have one, and the people who administer it are always sending me Important Tax Information. Here's the first sentence of their most recent letter, which I swear I am not making up:
"Dear David: The IRS has extended the deadline for the restatement of your plan to comply with GUST and various other amendments until, in most instances, September 30, 2003."

I understand everything in that sentence, up to "David." After that I am lost. Apparently I have until September 30 (in most instances) to get my plan -- no, sorry, the restatement of my plan -- to comply with something (but what?) called "GUST." And of course various other amendments. But how do I do this? And what if I don't?
The letter doesn't make this clear. It does, however, say this: "You must adopt EGTRRA prior to the end of the plan year beginning in 2002." I am, frankly, reluctant to adopt anything called "EGTRRA," which sounds like the name of a giant radioactive chicken that destroys Tokyo.
The thing is, this letter isn't from the Internal Revenue Service ("We're Working to Put You in Jail!"). It's from people on my side, people who sincerely want to tell me something, probably important, about GUST and EGTRRA. But I won't even try to finish their letter.
I'll put it, with all the other tax documents that I do not understand, in a folder marked "Taxes ," and I'll mail it to a guy I know named Evan. A few weeks later he'll mail me back a tax return that I will sign and send along to the IRS without reading any part of it, except where it says "SIGN HERE."

That's right: I have no idea what my tax return says, even though I'm legally responsible for it. I just have to hope that, when Evan prepares it, he's not in a prankish mood. IRS auditor: Mr. Barry, can you explain why, on Page 27 of your return, stapled to Form 4992, "Depreciation and Amortization," is the thymus gland of an otter? Me: That's not mine! IRS auditor: Also, on Page 23, you claim, as dependents, and I quote: "The Entire Cast of Buffy the Vampire Slayer."

I'm not the only taxpayer who has no idea what he's sending to the IRS. This year, only 28 percent of all Americans will prepare their own tax returns, according to a voice in my head that invents accurate-sounding statistics.  Why can't Americans do their own taxes? Because the federal tax code is out of control, that's why. It's gigantic and insanely complex, and it gets worse all the time. Nobody has ever read the whole thing. IRS workers are afraid to go into the same room with it. They keep it locked in the basement, and, once a day, they open the door, heave in a live taxpayer -- some poor slob who failed to adopt EGTRRA in time to comply with GUST (and various other amendments) then slam the door shut, before the screams start."

You should never lie to the IRS.  That's why my occupation is listed as "Domestic Goddess".  (True!)

Some people say that everybody should pay their taxes with a smile. I tried it but they wanted cash.

A man wrote a letter to the IRS: “I have been unable to sleep knowing that I have cheated on my income tax. I understated my taxable income and have enclosed a check for $200.00. If I still can’t sleep, I will send the rest.”

"You know, we all hate paying taxes, but the truth of the matter is without our tax money, many politicians would not be able to afford prostitutes."
-Jimmy Kimmel

"Taxation with representation ain't so hot either."
-- Gerald Barzan

"It's income tax time again, Americans: time to gather up those receipts, get out those tax forms, sharpen up that pencil, and stab yourself in the aorta."
-- Dave Barry

"Our party has been accused of fooling the public by calling tax increases 'revenue enhancement'. Not so. No one was fooled."
-- J. Danforth Quayle, V.P.
A man, called to testify at the IRS, asked his accountant for advice on what to wear. "Wear your shabbiest clothing. Let him think you are a pauper."

Then he asked his lawyer the same question, but got the opposite advice. "Do not let them intimidate you. Wear your most elegant suit and tie."

Confused, the man went to his rabbi, told him of the conflicting advice, and requested some resolution of the dilemma. "Let me tell you a story," replied the rabbi. "A woman, about to be married, asked her mother what to wear on her wedding night. 'Wear a heavy, long, flannel nightgown that goes right up to your neck.' But when she asked her best friend, she got conflicting advice. 'Wear your most sexy negligee, with a V neck right down to your navel.’”

The man protested, "What does all this have to do with my problem with the IRS?"

The rabbi said, "No matter what you wear, you're going to get screwed!!"

Dear IRS, 

Enclosed is my Tax Return & payment. Please take note of the attached article from the USA Today newspaper. In the article, you will see that the Pentagon is paying $171.50 for hammers and NASA has paid $600.00 for a toilet seat. 

Please find enclosed four toilet seats (value $2,400) and six hammers (value $1,029). This brings my total payment to $3,429.00. Please note the overpayment of $22.00 and apply it to the "Presidential Election Fund," as noted on my return. 

Might I suggest that you send the above mentioned fund a "1.5 inch screw." (See attached article...HUD paid $22.00 for a 1.5 inch Phillips Head Screw.) 

It has been a pleasure to pay my tax bill this year, and I look forward to paying it again next year. I just saw an article about the Pentagon and "screwdrivers."

From my cousin Sid:

At the end of the tax year, the Revenue Canada office sent an inspector to audit the books of a local hospital.

While the Revenue Canada agent was checking the books he turned to the CFO of the hospital and said, 

"I notice you buy a lot of bandages. What do you do with the end of the roll when there's too little left to be of any use?"

"Good question," noted the CFO. "We save them up and send them back to the bandage company and every once in a while, they send us a free roll."

"Oh," replied the auditor, somewhat disappointed that his unusual question had a practical answer.  But on he went, in his obnoxious way. 

 "What about all these plaster purchases?  What do you do with what's left over after setting a cast on a patient?"

"Ah, yes," replied the CFO, realizing that the inspector was trying to trap him with an unanswerable question.

"We save it and send it back to the manufacturer and every so often they will send us a free bag of plaster."

"I see," replied the auditor, thinking hard about how he could fluster the know-it-all CFO.

"Well," he went on, "What do you do with all the remains from circumcision surgeries?"

“Here, too, we do not waste," answered the CFO. “What we do is save all the little foreskins and send them to the Revenue Canada office, and about once a year they send us a complete prick."
An old joke, but STILL funny:

The IRS decides to audit Grandpa, and summons him to the IRS office. The IRS auditor was not surprised when Grandpa showed up with his attorney. The auditor said, 'Well, sir, you have an extravagant lifestyle and no full-time employment, Which you explain by saying that you win money gambling. I'm not sure the IRS finds that believable.'

'I'm a great gambler, and I can prove it,' says Grandpa. 'How about a demonstration?'

The auditor thinks for a moment and said, 'Okay. Go ahead.' Grandpa says, 'I'll bet you a thousand dollars that I can bite my own eye.' The auditor thinks a moment and says, 'It's a bet.' Grandpa removes his glass eye and bites it. The auditor's jaw drops. 

Grandpa says, 'Now, I'll bet you two thousand dollars that I can bite my other eye.' 
Now the auditor can tell Grandpa isn't blind, so he takes the bet. Grandpa removes his dentures and bites his good eye. The stunned auditor now realizes he has wagered and lost three grand, with Grandpa's attorney as a witness. He starts to get nervous. 

'Want to go double or nothing?' Grandpa asks 'I'll bet you six thousand dollars
 that I can stand on one side of your desk, and pee into that wastebasket on the other side, and never get a drop anywhere in between.' The auditor, twice burned, is cautious now, but he looks carefully and decides there's no way this old guy could possibly manage that stunt, so he agrees again. 

Grandpa stands beside the desk and unzips his pants, but although he strains mightily, he can't make the stream reach the wastebasket on the other side, 
so he pretty much urinates all over the auditor's desk. The auditor leaps with joy, realizing that he has just turned a major loss into a huge win. But Grandpa's own attorney moans and puts his head in his hands. 'Are you okay?' the auditor asks. 'Not really,' says the attorney. 'This morning, when Grandpa told me he'd been summoned for an audit, he bet me twenty-five thousand dollars that he could come in here and pee all over your desk and that you'd be happy about it!' 

Don't Mess with Old People!!

You NEED some cartoons today:

The wages of sin are death, but by the time taxes are taken out, it's just sort of a tired 



  1. I love the Maxine ones and of course... Snoopy. :) We typically get a return, so of course, ours were filed back in January... and spent by mid February.

    One of these years we will spend it on something fun... this was not that year.

  2. I do my own taxes, and then I pay and pay and pay. I think I will try what Snoopy did.


  3. I love that peeing gambler dude!

  4. Love Snoopy typing his letter to the IRS. I'd like to be taken off their list also.

    1. Do you suppose they have an "unsubscribe" button?

  5. True. We have way too much representation and way too little progression and amelioration. I want my money back.

  6. That joke about the pee (and the twenty-five thousand dollars) was sooo hilarious!

    1. One of the MANY advantages of being YOUR age is that you haven't heard the really old jokes before!!

  7. Not just laughs here today, big guffaws going on. I had to move my coffee to the kitchen in case I spilled it.
    I'm curious about your tax system. If income tax is taken from salary or wages on a weekly basis, and taxes are factored into prices of goods, why do you have to pay more tax every year at tax time?
    Out here, or downunder if you prefer, tax is taken from our earnings each payday, then at tax time we fill in our forms stating how much we earned, how much tax was paid and if we paid too much we get some back. There are other factors involved that I don't remember anymore, being retired as I am, but I always filled out my own return and almost always got some cash back. Only once I had to pay up, when I first retired and got a lump sum payment I underestimated how much and had to pay up $2.24 the next year.

    1. I don't understand taxes, either. That's part of the reason I married Bud--he's a lawyer AND an accountant. I write & make pretty things. He uses his left brain & I use my right. For those who tell us, "You don't have a brain between you" I tell them they're wrong--we have ONE!!

  8. What a scream. You made tax day a little more bearable.

  9. I apologize--when I decided to repost this, I forgot to delete the comments. That's OK--some of them are pretty funny!!

  10. OMG! The peeing guy and mailing in the toilet seats...this whole post was great! :) :)

    1. I liked it--that's why I gave it a second airing!!


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