The “If You Know Me Well, You Know…” Meme

•  If you know me well, you know that I start each day with black coffee.

•  If you know me well, you know that I like to grow flowers, but have a rickety back that sometimes doesn’t allow me to do much of anything but look at what is growing– which means, in practical terms, that I like to grow weeds, too.

•  If you know me well, you know that I am a jeans and t-shirt sort of girl.  With flat shoes/sandals.  I rock casual.

•  If you know me well, you know that I am not overly enamored with the human race.  Never have been.  Even in 6th grade when I was forced to sing that stupid “Up, Up, With People” song, I didn’t buy into it.  I always thought that the second line, “you meet ’em wherever you go,” was more gypsy curse than inspirational.  Still do.

•  If you know me well, you know that when wrapping a gift I always put tissue paper inside the gift bag or box– and that I prefer [fun] curly ribbon to [boring] straight ribbon.

•  If you know me well, you know that I am allergic to April and August.  And most dogs and cats.  And dust mites.  And some wines.  And antibacterial soap.  And many scented candles.

•  If you know me well, you know that I have never been to a karaoke bar– which I consider to be a blessing.

•  If you know me well, you know that I read books, websites, magazines about interior design.  I learn what I can from these sources, and then I apply what I like to this  house.  Sometimes it even looks good.

•  If you know me well, you know that I’m a lapsed Presbyterian.

•  If you know me well, you know that I enjoy going to the zoo.  I’m a fan of the okapi, the spectacled bear, and the pigmy marmoset.  I also like giraffes and otters.  And penguins, of course.  I’m rather open-minded about which animals I like at the zoo.

[H/T to Michelle at Bleeding Espresso.  You posted this last year.  I get to it this year.  Better late than never, eh?]  

In Which The Beans Pay Taxes– Sort Of

[This series of events is weirdly inspirational considering we’re talking about the IRS here.]

2009

The Beans make money.

2010

AprilThe Beans file a tax return with the IRS and pay taxes on the money they made in 2009.

August – The Beans receive a letter from the IRS stating that one small section of The Beans’ 2009 tax return is being audited.

The Beans phone their CPA, Sir Add-alot, who did the tax return in question.  Sir Add-alot and the Lawyer Bean figure out that the IRS is indeed correct and that a mistake has been made on the “tax return in question.”

The Beans pay more taxes.  And a penalty.

The Lawyer Bean, who spends most of his working life figuring out how to solve problems, is pleased that the situation is rectified.   The Blogger Bean shrugs and says, “oh well.”   Sir Add-alot frets.

November – Sir Add-alot continues to fret and tells the Lawyer Bean of such.

2011

FebruaryThe Beans receive a phone call from Sir Add-alot.

While preparing The Beans’ 2010 tax return, Sir Add-alot has a brain storm and double checks something on what is now known within The Bean household as the “tax return formerly in question.”  At which point he realizes that he did not make a mistake on the “tax return formerly in question.”  Nor did the Lawyer Bean make a mistake.

[It’s a given that the Blogger Bean didn’t make a mistake.  She cedes all responsibility for taxes to those who actually enjoy working with numbers.]

The Beans learn from Sir Add-alot that the financial institution where they have some investments– a place of numbers— had made a mistake while adding up a bunch of numbers.

[Uh huh.]

By the time the Blogger Bean hears of this turn of events, Sir Add-alot has already made some calls– filled in some new forms– talked with the right people.  And he has sent the revised “tax return in question/then not in question because we paid more taxes and a penalty/then known as the tax return formerly in question/but now once again referred to as the tax return in question (but in a good way)” to the IRS.

[You with me here?]

AprilThe Beans await the return of their money— that they did not owe to the IRS, but paid while under the impression that they did owe it to the IRS– but now know better– and want their money back from the IRS– who has said that the money will be returned to The Beans once the “tax return in question (but in a good way)” is processed by the IRS.

The End.

[I hope.]

The Perfect Color

We’re in the process of redecorating our home.  Instead of the original color scheme of drab taupe/pinkish-beige walls, we’re changing the color scheme to relaxing golden/sandy/khaki colors.

As you can imagine, this project has made me just a bit crazy.  I’m obsessed with choosing the perfect new color for each room.  So we paint large splotches of a potential color on all four walls in the room we’re working on, and then I look at the color in different light for a few days until I decide what I want.

But on Saturday morning I was indecisive.  So very early Saturday morning, before it was light out, I got Zen-Den to paint one more splotch of the potential color on a wall.  I figured that I’d get dressed, the sun would come out, and then I’d give this color one more look-see.

To decide for sure.

Well, as usual, Zen-Den got dressed much more quickly than I did.  And, as usual, he was standing around in the foyer waiting for me to get ready.  He had no idea that I’d stopped for one last glance at our color-to-be, so he shouted upstairs and asked me what I was doing.

To which I answered without one ounce of irony: “I’m watching paint dry.”

Because I was.  Darn it.

Instantly, from below in the foyer I heard Zen-Den burst out laughing.  He realized that I hadn’t a clue what I’d just said– and he could barely contain himself waiting for me to realize what I’d just said.

Eventually I realized what I’d said and started laughing at myself… which made Zen-Den laugh even more about what I’d just said.

And continue to laugh… all the way to the paint store.  Where I’m happy to report that the one of us who wasn’t laughing like a nut purchased the perfect color of paint for our bedroom walls.

So there.  HA!

Twitter Me This

First I wrote this.

For smirks and giggles I started a Twitter account last week.  And to date, I am underwhelmed.

I can see that if you have family and friends who are on Twitter, you could have a fun time staying in touch and sharing info that is of interest to your group.  I don’t have any family and friends on Twitter that I know of.

I can see that if you were a fan of some celebrity, then it might be fun to see what this person had to say.  I am not a big enough fan of any celebrity to care about their day-to-day thoughts and actions.

I can see that if you had a smart phone and were in a boring real-life situation– at the doc’s office– on the bus riding home from work– waiting at the airport– visiting a crazy old relative whose politics were the opposite of yours– it could be a blessing to have to check your Twitter account.  But my phone isn’t smart, so I don’t have that option.

I can see that if you had no access to the internet via a desk or laptop computer, then a Twitter account could give you a fast RSS-style service that would keep you up-to-date on your favorite topics, websites, mags, and newspapers.  But I am very fortunate and have both a desk and a laptop computer with internet connection that are available to me at any time.

So, what am I missing about Twitter?  Is there something there to hook my interest so that I might begin to smirk and giggle as I had hoped that I would?  Or is it as pointless as it seems to me?

Then I did some research and found this information.

Twitter Looks Chaotic: Don’t Be Afraid“But behind the churn of news and trivia there’s a remarkable depth of knowledge and opinion.”

Twitter Tweets Some Big Q1 Stats“Twitter is now seeing 155 million tweets a day.”

Twitter in Plain EnglishReal life happens between blog posts and emails.”

Now I am left really wondering.

So I’ll ask you, gentle readers? Do you twitter and tweet?  And if so, what do you get from the experience?  Explain Twitter to me.  Please.

This & That

{april – monday – morning}

It’s Get To Know Your Neighbor’s Trash Day in our suburb this morning.

Monday is trash day here and most neighbors put their trash by the curb on Sunday night.  Last night we had high winds that blew everyone’s trash around the yards and into the street.  So far no one has been a slug about picking up the mess in front of their property.  Yeah!

However, every once in a while we have someone who moves here and refuses to pick up any trash but their own.  We don’t like those sort of people.  They don’t last long here in Mom Trails.  [That’s my nickname for this subdivision.]

Word of the day is slabjacking. I love saying it.  *slabjacking*

It means that our front sidewalk will be “magically” lifted from underneath to make the sidewalk level again and connect with the bottom of the front stoop.  This requires specialized equipment and the expertise of a concrete company.  *slabjacking*

Currently the front sidewalk is uneven and sinking to the right which is dangerous and ugly.  When the company finishes this repair, we will have a level sidewalk and everything will look almost like new.  *slabjacking*

I’m allergic to April.

My allergist refers to my particular allergies as “rose fever.”  I’d be a darned bit less snarly about these allergies if there were some roses on the bushes now.  But the bushes around here are all thorny and dormant with no flowers on them.

I asked my allergist about this obvious discrepancy between reality [no roses in sight] and his term for my malady [clearly based on the concept of roses causing something].  He just laughed, said it was an old-fashioned term, and kept on telling me what to do to relieve my itchy, bitchy, twitchy-ness.  Nothing like modern medicine, eh?

Shopping For Clothes

I don’t like to shop for clothes– at the mall– in the department stores.  However, last week it seemed like a good idea. So…

I went to the mall to look for some spring clothes for me.  I parked in the only place I could find– a parking garage about halfway between two department store anchors on either end of the mall.  Then I walked to the end of the mall to shop in the big bad department.

Once inside I went to the exact spot in the exact department where I had seen, in January, what I wanted to buy.  But my item was not there.  In fact, the whole large area formerly devoted to this particular brand was gone.  So I went in search of a sales associate.  Eventually I found a woman and asked her where the brand I wanted was hiding.  I know department stores.  They hide things.

She told me that they no longer carried that brand.  So I asked: “why?” And this is what she told me.

The brand that I was interested in buying is also sold on a tv shopping network.  Dishonest shoppers, who had purchased discounted  items on the tv shopping network, were returning these discounted items to the big bad department store– where the big bad department store was giving them a full price refund— which was costing the big bad department store money.

[I have no idea why the big bad department store didn’t pull a Nancy Reagan and “Just Say NO” to the scam artists.  That’s what I’d do if I was in charge.  But, of course, I am rational and ethical– which in my experience is the antithesis of how department stores work.]

Instead, the big bad department store did the only thing it could think of to solve this problem;  it stopped carrying the brand altogether.  The brand that I had finally decided to buy.  The brand that this annoying store has promoted ad nauseum for years.  That brand.  *sigh*

So I thanked the sales associate for letting me know what was going on and left the big bad department store empty-handed.  Again.

As I was walking back to my car, I started thinking about what had just happened.  I had made the effort to buy something, but was defeated by the very store that had convinced me that I needed this item.  That was annoying.

I’d  been told a story that made the big bad department store look like a victim– which, I guess, the sales associate thought would make me sympathetic to the plight of the store.  That was weird.

But most importantly, I’d had the belated realization that I should never, ever listen to what the big bad department store says. Everything about the place is  hinky.  And this insight, gentle readers, was worth the trip to the mall.  I have learned.  I am better for it.

And you know what?  I’m not going back there again.

[Hello FTC!  I cannot lie.  I didn’t put this disclaimer on this post when I first published it because I didn’t use any names of the companies that I’m writing about here.  But now I can see that in the comments below I will be revealing the identity of the big bad department store.  So just to be safe, here is what you like to see: I have received no money or other compensation for the opinions stated in this post or in the comments below.]



Seed Money

 

In the spring I usually buy my tomatoes and herbs as small plants from the local garden nursery.

But this year I decided to try to grow the little plants from seed inside the house, hoping to transplant them outside when the weather is warmer.

So what do you think?  Will these seeds grow?

Or have I squandered $13.84 on this investment?!