Life happens: To the tax break(ing) point

By Aprill Brandon
Feb. 28, 2013 at midnight
Updated Feb. 27, 2013 at 8:28 p.m.

You guys, I feel so bad. I can't believe I have been so selfish and near-sighted. Not to mention so utterly unfair. I mean, to think that I could possibly be the cause of so much financial strife and anguish.

I am so, so, so deeply ashamed right now.

Yes, dear readers, it is with a heavy heart that I inform you my husband and I just finished our taxes and as it turns out, we have cheated our poor government out of their hard-earned money - to the tune of $800.

Quite frankly, I'm surprised they're even still up and running considering this monetary injustice.

To be honest, I'm not even sure how this travesty happened. I mean, last year we got a refund. And absolutely nothing has changed this year.

Oops, wait, you know what? I take that back. Something did change. We actually made less money this year than we did last year.

Which makes sense.

That we would now owe money.

Even though we're making less money.

Yeah, no, I can totally get behind that math.

And you know what else? I don't even blame them for this unexpected development. I mean, sure, I know that our taxes are automatically taken out of our paychecks but, what? I'm just supposed to expect the people getting paid to know this stuff and take out the right amount of taxes ahead of time? To take the money out in small doses throughout the year instead of discovering they need one large lump sum in the spring?

Please. These are very important people with very important things to do. I think we can all agree that current bills in Congress, such as H.R. 82, which would establish and implement security procedures to reduce the likelihood of baby switching and H.R. 213, which would ensure that consumers receive notification regarding food products from crops, livestock or poultry raised on land which contained sewage sludge, aren't just going to filibuster themselves.

(P.S. Those are both real bills being considered in Congress right now).

Again, I am so ashamed. I can't believe I didn't do my civic duty as a civilian of these United States and double-check they were taking out enough every two weeks. Honestly, how lazy can I get? The tax code, at only a mere 70,000 or so pages, is available to anyone who wants to read it, including me. So, really, I have no excuse.

Gee whiz. Well, I sure hope the government isn't struggling because they've had to try to make ends meet without my $800 so far. To think that they might have possibly had to have had a committee meeting with only bagels, croissants and doughnuts, instead of bagels, croissants and the good doughnuts from that one bakery, or that, God forbid, some of them actually had to share staplers. I just - I just can't even fathom.

But hey, if Congress is reading this right now, let me assure you that I am taking the necessary steps to rectify this situation as soon as possible.

Yes, just as soon as I figure out which only semi-vital organ I can sell on the black market, you will have your check.

Aprill Brandon is a columnist for the Advocate. Her column runs every two weeks in the Your Life section. Comment on this story at



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