Life After College: My Very First Tax Season

What the hell is a 1099?!

Last week was a pretty big week for me in grown-up world. Not only did I learn a valuable lesson about why you don’t take your shoes off in bars, but I also filed out my taxes all by myself. And by all by myself, I mean with the help of an accountant who probably now thinks that my IQ borders somewhere in the high twenties.

Up until last week I thought filing taxes was as simple as creating a fake Facebook profile to stalk exes (okay…one-night stands). I fill out a slip of paper with my name, social security number, yearly earnings, bra size, favorite movies, and my vote on what color M&Ms should include next. Bada bing,  bada boom, I’m a functioning member of society.

But no. This process makes writing a 19 page paper on the causes and effects of “I only smoke when I’m drunk” look incredibly easy. First I had to fill out a million pieces of paper, then I had to track down W2’s, W4’s, 1099s, 13 Chinese take-out menus, and Colt 45s. And it’s not like I stored them all in one place.  Why would I ever do anything that would make my life less of a daily episode of Real World/Road Rules Challenge. Some were at home in Florida, some were at my grandmother’s NYC apt., some were buried 6 feet under cement in a “what? We’re making a graduation time capsule and I can choose one thing to put in? Okay, here’s some official, legal, looking documents that I doubt I’ll ever need” time capsule on the Syracuse campus.

And then after I spent a gajillion dollars (give or take a bazillion) on faxing and pigeon-carrying these papers over to the accountant, she calls me up and tells me that I’m missing 7 pages of an 8 page document. Instead of telling her the truth (I probably used those papers to mop up spilled sangria), I went with the more exciting route of straight out lying. I told her that I only received page 1 of 8 of the document. And the more she insisted that was completely impossible, the more I insisted that it was what happened. By the time I finished spinning my yarn, that now involved an alien abduction and wire tapping, she hung up on me. But not before telling me to get her pages 2-8.

9 nervous breakdowns and 67 hostile e-mails later, I finally managed to get all my paperwork in. However, it goes without saying that my accountant and I are no longer on speaking terms. I’m not sure if it was the 7 missing pages that put her over the edge, or my insistence that she just make up numbers in its place.

Either way I’m avoiding this entire mess next year with something I like to call tax evasion. It’s way easier and with the amount of money I’m making, I doubt anyone will notice.

  • 10614935101348454