Married . WithOUT Children
“You’re blind, RIGHT?” husband-head asked hopefully from where he was working at the dining room table.
“Uhhh … no,” I answered suspiciously “Why? What are you going to do that you don’t want me to see?”
Granted, I am extremely near-sighted, but luckily it’s correctable with glasses and contact lenses.
“I was thinking I could check the `blind box’ on this tax form as a deduction,” husband-head admitted. “You could get rid of your contacts and be blind like Mrs. Magoo. We’ll get you a white cane and train one of the boys to be your guide dog.”
No dice – taking our unruly dogs on a walk with PERFECT vision is dangerous enough. …
But husband-head had been working on our taxes all weekend and discovered that – once AGAIN – we owed money to our buddies at the IRS.
“How come they always want all of our money?” I asked husband-head with disbelief. “We’ve already given them most of our paychecks!”
“It’s just not enough, baby,” husband-head said, doing a Barry White song imitation and shaking his head. “It’s just never enough. …”
He continued to slave over the forms.
“How about the credit for the elderly or disabled?” he asked again, hoping against hope to find a legitimate deduction. “CERTAINLY you must qualify for one of those!”
I looked over his shoulder at the form.
“I’ll be checking THAT box in a minute if you don’t shut up,” I said, pointing to line 6b on the sheet.
Husband-head peered at the line called “Death of Your Spouse.” …
“Why can’t we just write off the pets?” I suggested. “Lord knows, we’ve spent a fortune on them this year!”
“Why can’t we just write off your hairdressing appointments?” he countered. “Lord knows, those have cost us even MORE. …”
My mother called and I lamented our plight about having to fork over money to the government that we didn’t have.
“I simply can’t BELIEVE that we owe again!” I whined to my mommy.
Little did I realize I had just opened the door and given her the perfect opportunity to impart the infamous “Baby Lecture.”
“Well,” she huffed. “If you had CHILDREN, you’d have deductions! And if you had LOTS of children, you’d have LOTS of deductions and you wouldn’t have to pay at all! In fact, you might even get a REFUND!”
I looked at the calendar and noted the dwindling number of days until April 15.
“Mommy dearest … that’s not really an option anymore if you do the math,” I pointed out. “And besides, that’s a really stupid reason to have kids, anyway.”
“Well, it’s YOUR checkbook, sweetheart. … If you want to keep paying the IRS … ” she said, hoping that would persuade me into motherhood.
But it gave me an idea.
“How about this `adoption credit’?” I suggested to husband-head, as we continued to pore over the forms searching for a loophole. “We could adopt a kid that’s, like, 17 years and 11 months and then kick ’em out when they turn 18. … “
Husband-head came up with a better idea.
“For that matter, why don’t we just pay what we owe with Monopoly money?” he said in a tone that insinuated he was actually CONSIDERING it.
Couldn’t be any worse than the check we were about to write. …
In the end, it became apparent that there was no way around it – we were going to have to pay.
Husband-head gathered up the forms and wrote a check for the amount, leaving out a personal letter I had written to the IRS.
“Dear IRS … Thanks to you, I R now broke,” the handwritten note said.
As he got ready for work on Monday morning, husband-head chanted a little song.
“We owe! We owe! It’s off to work I go!”
Note to readers: This will be the last appearance of Heidi Rice’s column in the Post Independent. Fans of Married WithOUT Children can still catch the column every week in the Rifle Citizen Telegram and on her Web site, http://www.heidirice.com.
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