So I just sent off all my tax documents to my accountant. This is phenomenally early, considering that it’s only February, and the financial year doesn’t end until June. Except that the tax is for last year, and my accountant has been hassling me for them for months. So in fact I am completely useless.
I hate preparing my tax. I hate collating information. I hate going through files, finding details, and writing them down. I hate filling out forms. I hate paying bills. I hate doing anything that involves inputting data (unless the data is a Tweet or Facebook update, in which case I could do it all day).
And I can’t keep up with all the data to be inputted, just to maintain a functional 21st century Western lifestyle. Paperwork comes in at an extraordinary rate, and I lose track of it all the time. With five people in the house, there's a lot of data input, and when I forget, I can make some colossal mistakes.
I’m not just talking about having the phone cut off because I forgot to pay the bill, though that has certainly happened, and oh, how I laughed at my silly error (using ‘laugh’ in the sense of ‘wept when I found I was unable to make a call’). In the past few years I have also:
- Forgotten to transfer money into my husband’s account before a business trip so he found himself overseas and penniless;
- Forgotten to re-register my car so I found myself booked and shamed by two gleeful looking police officers, and fined about a billion dollars;
- Forgotten to renew my daughter’s passport and found myself panic stricken in line behind seventy five others at 5pm on a Friday afternoon;
- Forgotten to lodge insurance claims, which led to all sorts of problems, I can assure you;
- Forgotten to sign school permission slips, which leads to very cross teachers and extremely embarrassed kids;
- Forgotten to invoice for work I’ve done, which is just plain stupid;
- Forgotten to pay parking fines, which, as I’ve discovered, leads to even more fines;
- Forgotten to leave feedback on ebay purchases, which leads to very agitated sellers;
- Forgotten to bank two birthday cheques from my grandmother, which really hurt her feelings.
I don’t want to have to fill out forms anymore. In fact, I would quite cheerfully give up some freedom and privacy to never have to input data again. I’d be more than happy to have a microchip inserted in my finger – hey, inserted in my forehead! – into which every detail of my life could be programmed, including money in, money out, and money owed. The government could just take what is theirs from my online account after calculating their share, my creditors could do the same, and I could give up record keeping forever. It sounds like heaven.
Either that, or I could find a full time bookkeeper to live with me. As long as he pays himself. After all, the last thing I need is an employee. Too much paperwork.