Blah, Blah, Blah, Cash Flow, Blah, Blah, Deposit Account vs. Chequing Account, Blah, Blah.....
I found myself in the unfortunate position of sitting in my accountants office as he was giving me the annual 'state of the union' address, which I always dread as I can rarely understand any of it.You see, I am pretty much the 'common guy'. I go to work, they pay me and all is then well. Pretty simple. Sadly this 'accountant' got added to the equation a couple years ago when I needed to become an independent contractor to do my job.
Since then I have made lots more money & paid less tax however I now need to meet, plan and strategize with the 'world's biggest geek', that being Robert, the accountant.
Of course I only understand a very small portion of the crazy babble that 'Robert the dweeb' is telling me. I only look at the bank balance and hope there is enough money in the accounts to pay the bills. So far there always has been, so he must know his stuff !
So 'Doofus' was continuing to ramble on, as he is so known to do, when suddenly I heard:
"Blah, Blah, So if you so choose to work any further this year you will certainly need to plan for it. Your last job has given you a 3-month termination payout so you need to account for both this income & anything you earn above it. Blah"
Ok, I may have added an additional 'Blah' in there, as I was not paying total attention to what this 'goof' was saying, however his last statement certainly grabbed my attention.
"So if I understand you correctly, you are saying I can afford to 'CHOOSE' to work or not for the balance of this year?" I quickly asked, interrupting the 'Pinheads' further incomprehensible ramblings.
"I am certainly not commenting on your employment situation. Blah" 'Rob the Knob' responded, in his all too familiar 'uppity tone'. "I am just saying from a financial point of view, you need to make additional tax plans if you take another contract position this year as you are already paid for the year. Blah"
"Hmmm" I replied, stroking my chin thoughtfully. "So if I do absolutely nothing more the rest of this year you are essentially saying I am ok - income wise and tax wise, of course."
"Blah, Blah, Yes" 'Nerd Boy' responded. "But obviously you will be working shortly so we should now examine each of the individual available options to best maximize your earnings and minimize the tax against them. I have some PowerPoint slides we can review to explain each option in detail."
"No, No!" I responded, interrupting him quickly. "I've heard enough. I've decided to take the rest of this year off. I deserve it. No tax issues then as my income is zero! Right - HAHA, issue solved!"
With that said and after another half hour of signing forms and other ridiculous formalities, I was then finished. Free at last! I am now in an extremely rare position in my life of being able to take some time off. Sweet! It is the first & perhaps last time to have such an opportunity. I think I gots to take it!
As all my friends and myself sat down at the pub that evening, I quickly announced, "This round of drinks are on me!", sounding extremely pleased with life in general.
Immediately everyone knew that something was up as this was a phrase that is rarely used by myself or any of us, for that matter!
After paraphrasing what the 'Creepy Geeky' accountant had told me, all of my friends were genuinely happy for me and slapping me on the back. The mood was fantastic. It turned into a great evening!
Sadly though, the mood suddenly took a rather unexpected, negative turn as I delivered the exact, same message to my parents the following afternoon.
I have always looked to my folks as a good "guiding post" for my life & career. Both Mom and Dad are in their seventies and have seen a great deal of life, so their opinion is always valued.
"Taking the next 3 months off?" Mom asked somewhat cautiously, "Are you sure that is wise in this employment environment, can you afford to take any time off?"
I quickly relieved her apprehensions by telling her that although out of work, I was fortunate to have a good 'cancellation clause' in my work contract and they had to give me three months compensation as a result.
She seemed quite relieved to hear this however as I then tried to best explain what 'Dork Head' the accountant had also told me, my father immediately interjected.
"Taking the next few months off, well that's just lazy, bone-lazy, in my book!" Dad announced angrily. Money should have nothing to do with it. Don't you have any pride?"
"In my day, a guy would take work whenever or wherever he could get it." Dad continued on his rant. "I don't know what kind of a 'Shyster' this guy is that you have doing your accounting books but it all sounds like a 'load of old cobblers' to me. Taking 3 months off. Disgusting! What are the neighbours going to say? They will think my son has become some damn hobo or something."
"But Dad!" I protested. "You hate all of the neighbours & always have said you don't give a 'toss' what they think about anything. And anyway, I don't even live here anymore. Haven't for years."
But my father would hear no more of it.
"Nope!" Dad responded, waving his hands in the air. "I wouldn't be a good father if I left you to do nothing & turn into a bum. It's a slippery slope. It's just not right, so starting tomorrow I have a few chores you can do to help me out with around here. There will be no idleness, that I can promise you. You can begin by helping me to haul away that old garden shed out back, I have been putting it off because of my bad back."
I quickly peeked out the back window and saw the shed, still standing where it had been for years, looking the same as always. I was now confused.
"What are you talking about, Dad?" I asked. "Haul it away? It's still standing there in the corner of the garden as it always has been."
"Well obviously you are going to have to empty it out and then knock it down first." Dad responded, matter-of-factly. "Of course I will be there to supervise the whole procedure."
I knew quite well from the past that whenever my father uses the expression "supervise" that generally this means that he and his friends will be sitting in lawn chairs drinking beer and cat-calling at me, telling me how lazy I am and to work faster.
My continued protests to all of this were to no avail. Everything I said, logical or otherwise, fell on deaf ears. Dad just continually repeated the phrase of 'There will be no idleness around here'. (clearly only in reference to me and not himself.)
"And once we get that old shed out of the way, we can build the new one." Dad continued on. "I'll get 'Old Pete' to come over & we will supervise the whole procedure - make sure it's all done properly."
"Build a new one?" I complained aloud. "Why would you need to build a new one, just go out & buy one of the pre-fabricated ones, they're a lot better & last for years. No one builds those things anymore."
"HA!" Dad retorted sarcastically. "Ok, 'Mr. Onassis', we're all not like you having loads of extra money just sitting around waiting to be thrown at buying new garden sheds. No Sir! I'm just a poor old pensioner on a fixed budget. No excess cash for these fancy garden sheds you're speaking of. No, I built this last one and we're going to build the new one. That's how it's done. I've made my mind up!"
So this is how my time off is going to begin. Not exactly what I had planned so maybe I may need to rethink things a bit and start to look for work a little sooner then January.
In any event for now, time off is time off so I won't be doing much of anything, which includes both working & blogging. (aside from the above mentioned, of course!)
I know lots of action usually happens in my life this time of year especially with my upcoming holiday to Los Angeles, then Halloween and of course the 'always dreaded, yet entertaining' Christmas season.
But I really do need this break. My regular readers will not only know this, but actually expect me to disappear for a few months each year.
So really, I am only just living up to my 'somewhat impulsive' reputation. (Doh!)
Of course I'll try & keep my Twitter account current. Any news of interest I will undoubtedly post on there.
(You can Follow me HERE or if I become too dull, UN-Follow as well).
So I think that should be about it. I think we're all good.
Everything's covered! See you in 2011 :)