Links & snippets
September 30, 2012
XKCD is one of my favorite webcomics and this interview with the creator just affirms my love.
This story about Lonni Sue, a once-accomplished illustrator, who became ill with encephalitis and lost all her memory is just chilling. She only remembers her mother and her sister and has to relearn everything, including basic life functions.
Seemed like this graduate advisor’s column on the difficulties of life as a married couple in academia could have been instructive or interesting but instead, just struck me as a little bit odd in some places. Maybe it’s just me and my huge sphere of privacy, to be broached only if you’re invited to my inner circle, but while I personally seek and heed advice given in good faith, I’m also put off by these paragraphs:
The couple didn’t consult me when they got engaged, and they haven’t asked for my guidance since. They are Midwesterners, and together they radiate a niceness that almost burns your skin. They might consider inquiries about their marital and academic status too forward; or maybe they suspect that my advice might bring them down.
Their romance is really none of my business. Still, I can’t help being intrigued by the trend they seem to represent. In the past eight years, I’ve witnessed more than a dozen graduate students take a similar plunge. The marriage rate in our department rivals our placement record. If an alien landed and surveyed our program, the creature might assume that we were operating a dating service or a fertility clinic. What’s gotten into the youth of today?
It really seemed like the goal here was more like nostalgia crossed with a Type-A’s need to control (takes one to know one) been thwarted recap of everything that’s gone wrong with the youth of today. Just me? Have a look.
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In the decidedly less freakish, Funny About Money has identified that Time is Relative. So. Very. True.
This is why I put up with so much less bullshit in my life and give one reason: I’m too old for this.
Speaking of being old for things, is getting laundry done amicably really such a fraught issue? Oil and Garlic shared the labor divide in her household. It works well for them. I’m just confused why chores involve wars. It’s not that PiC and I are the most patient people in the world because seriously, no. But we’re at the point where: if it gets done, and we’re both putting in what time and energy we can, then fine. NBD. Good enough. He gets 80%+ credit anyway because frankly, I can’t do an equal physical amount around here but I do all our taxes, financial planning, negotiating, knee-busting on lowlives and hooligans, all the talkin’ and follow-up with people. To each, their strength.
Does that work for anyone else or do you need to have a strict division of labor? Or some other thing?
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To distract myself from the big canine medical drama that I’ll write up later, I’m working on …..
Taxes: The things that were once fun, aren’t anymore. My eyes are burning out as we speak, while I pore over 2011’s taxes and my brain tries to figure out who?what?where?whu?
Itemizing is a new thing in my life. Itemized PiC’s taxes for him last year. And I have now discovered that the Form 1099-G: Report of State Income Tax Refund is like a new little Devil.
Would you believe this bugger says:
“It may be taxable to you if you deducted the state or local income tax paid on Schedule A (Form 1040). Even if you did not receive the amount shown, for example, because it was credited to your state or local estimated tax, it is still taxable if it was deducted. If you received interest on this amount, you should receive Form 1099-INT for the interest.”
So: If you itemized last year and deducted it, and got a state refund, this becomes a taxable item. And if you ended up not coming out ahead, you’re still getting taxed anyway. SUCKER.
For a stupid moment, I thought, this’ll be next year’s headache, but as it turns out, nope. What a jerk.
Now I’m going down blind alley after blind alley wondering, why are you asking for all this information? I’ve never even touched Schedule L, I can’t give you figures from that!
I’m starting to think of this tax software as a sadistic psychopath. Yes, as opposed to the soft and cuddly kind. Leave me alone. Everything is wrong in my world when taxes are horrible. They’re supposed to be fun. Right, Kay Bell?