Sunday, April 12, 2015

Grumpy Day aka Tax Season

I've completed a "first draft" of the taxes, though it appears I have a typo on one page and still need to fill in some backup material for the Schedule D.  I know it isn't just my imagination that both the IRS and Canada Revenue have increased the amount of information they require related to investment income.  I keep thinking there will be a sustained push to roll things back to mid 90s levels of paperwork, but I guess that is just wishful thinking.  Anyway, normally I submit both US and Canadian taxes at the same time, as they are (in my case) so intimately linked, but we moved provinces and that adds another 3 or so pages to the Canadian taxes, and I just couldn't bear to do any more this weekend.  I'll file the U.S. taxes tomorrow and see about wrapping up the Canadian ones* this Friday (after I am back from another business trip).  I know I won't have any more time on the weekend, since we'll be in Montreal, and I refuse to haul a bunch of tax receipts around with me on the train!  But they'll get done.  I have a bunch of specific gripes about the handling of international income for both tax regimes, but honestly there is no point in wallowing in them.

It's been really up and down on all kinds of fronts.  We are wrapping up some documentation and the client is pleased, but we've had to work far too many hours.  I did ride my bike today, but I think putting a padlock on the shed was a bad idea.  I can no longer get the darn thing open (maybe creeping senility but more likely a rusted out spring inside) and I actually had to unscrew the latch to get to my bike.  I had decided I did want to bike today (it was the first really sustained day of spring) and this just pushed me over the edge.  After I finally got my bike out of the shed, I had to just ride like crazy to make it to the theatre.  I made the trip in 15 minutes, and then it turned out that the play (Fugard's Nongogo) had been pushed back by 15 minutes.  While I do wish they had emailed us, I was actually pretty grateful for the delay, since it allowed me to sponge off a bit and change into a second shirt that I had brought.  I liked the play overall, though it was certainly depressing at points.  (And there are relatively long stretches where the dialog switches into an African language, most likely Xhosa or Zulu, which was kind of alienating.)  I think it is the closest Fugard comes to writing like Eugene O'Neill.  I've now managed to see 4 Fugard plays, with my favourite being Sizwe Bansi Is Dead, which was simply incredible.  I had a chance to see The Road to Mecca, but the topic just doesn't interest me.  On the way home from work (I stopped there after the play to put in some time on our presentation) I went up to Robarts.  Not only was I able to borrow quite a few of Fugard's later plays, so I can decide for myself if I like them, but Mamet's Boston Marriage.  Score!

However, my general outlook for the day was kind of downbeat, not only because of the taxes hanging over my head, but because my daughter was quite sick and we don't really know what it was.  Probably just a flu-like virus.  It's kind of touch and go whether she will be up for going to school tomorrow, but we'll see.  We obviously want to make sure she isn't contagious.

I guess it could have been worse.  We could have been going to Montreal this weekend and been forced to cancel yet again.  Of course, there is still time for me to eat something horrible in the Regina airport and get sick or for whatever my daughter had to spread to my wife or son or both.  I am definitely hoping that that does not happen and that we make the train and the trip is relatively uneventful.  That would be a pretty fantastic early birthday present (especially as I am not asking for any tangible gifts this year).  Another great present would be for the nice weather to last and allow me to bike to work Monday and perhaps even Friday.  I'm a little sore, but generally was glad to have made it back up on my bike; the acid test will be tomorrow when I wake up and see how sore I am.

* I guess it is a small consolation, but at least I don't have to file BC and Ontario tax forms, since we switched provinces halfway through the year.  I'm not sure why that is, since I had income in both places, and I always had to file two sets of state tax forms when moving around in the States, but I will accept anything that makes filing less of a burden.

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