Monday, October 7, 2013

Tax is wack

Other and I are struggling with a minor income tax problem on behalf of our daughter. It’s a small problem, relatively speaking, and we have both the money and the expertise of a competent accountant, and still we are confused. Other just dropped the astounding fact bomb that when I start taking Social Security, I’ll have to pay QUARTERLY taxes. I’m appointing a conservator and checking into a nursing home right now.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Tyranny of fashion

Sometimes I’ll overhear someone making a nasty snap judgment about a woman with an unbecoming haircut or a piece of clothing that accentuates her figure flaws: What horrible taste she must have to choose that unfortunate hairstyle and those unflattering clothes! How stupid she looks!

The thing is, she’s the victim here. She had a hairdresser who butchered her hair that way. She didn’t do it to herself. As the unfortunate bearer of many a bizarre haircut, I know that. And maybe her friends wanted to spare her feelings so they told her it looked nice. Maybe they actually believed it looked nice. 

And the thing about clothes is that you don’t really have a choice. Fashion changes every two weeks and is designed for teenagers. Even if you found something a year ago that minimized your hips or obscured your lack of cleavage, you certainly wouldn’t be able to find anything like it again. Unless the item was Levis 501s, which are the only piece of clothing that hasn’t changed since the 1970s. (Of course, no one but me and a couple of cowboys wear them anymore.)

That’s why I tend to buy multiples of clothes I like. Years ago I feared those fabric maryjanes from Chinatown might be discontinued. They were the only shoes I could find then that were comfortable and, I thought, attractive. I bought dozens of them. The weird thing was that they had flimsy-looking plastic soles a quarter of an inch thick, so they seemed likely to wear out in days, but they last for years. In fact, the soles never wear out (though the fabric can fray). 

So in case you’re wondering why I’ve got six pairs of pants or 10 skirts or 12 T-shirts in the same style but different colors, it’s because I know that fashions will change and I’ll never find anything like them again. As for my hair, let’s not talk about it.