I walk down to my stupid community mailbox to check my mail. The idiocy of these types of mailboxes strikes me, as it has every other time I've checked my mail. Bills. Magazines. Junk Mail. A package slip!
I couldn't remember what I ordered, but that happens a lot. I start driving towards the post office, eager to get whatever gadget I've ordered this time. Stopped at a red light, I look more closely at the slip. It's not a package, it's a certified letter. And it's from the IRS.
I had assumed that I would eventually be audited. I pay my taxes and all that, but my record keeping department is less than exemplary. Actually, it's nowhere near exemplary. This was inevitable.
I press on the accelerator, eager to get this over with.
There's no one in line at the post office, so I go straight to the pickup window. The lady goes to the back to dig up my letter. Noticing my heart rate increasing, I try to lower it. "This is a great opportunity to practice remaining calm in anxiety laden situations", I think. I take a few deep breaths and try to stop fidgeting.
My eyes lock with the post office employee's for a second. The IRS. I'm getting audited. If I were a human, I'd be slightly embarassed. I sign for the letter and open it as I walk back to my car.
It's a thick envelope, full of pages. I scan the pages as I flip through them quickly. Collections. Leins on property. Seizure of assets. This looks scary.
I get to the end of the packet and find no reference to what they want. I go through it again more slowly, and I find a bill.
I owe the IRS $125.
Yep. That damn estimated tax payment bites us lazy contractors in the butt every year. I guess I'll be getting mine soon.
I owed a little over 4 grand one year, because I was a contractor and never paid in quarterly like I was supposed to. I paid the 4 grand with a credit card. I am still paying on it, nearly 10 years later.
Two words: Screw The Government.
I woke up and stumbled to the front door to check for packages. I wasn't really expecting one, but you can never be too sure. To my surprise there was a small brown box waiting on the doorstep for me. What had I ordered? I couldn't remember. I walked back inside and tore the package open.
Inside was a book and a board game. Not just any book and board game, though - they were abominations thrust in in front of my virgin eyes. The game was called A Hot Affair and the book was Penthouse: Naughty by Nature: Female Readers' Sexy Letters to Penthouse. Confused, I check the shipping address. Sure enough they weren't meant for me.
They were my neighbor's.
Three words that signify one of the hardest and most important parts of being alive.
As I've alluded to before, I have given up all sorts of foodstuffs that are bad for me (that are also, by design, delicious and addictive). This includes approximately 60% of the things I used to eat, and all of the foods I would turn to for comfort after a bad day, or when I was feeling ill, or nursing a hangover (I've stopped drinking as well, so the hangover one doesn't matter so much).
On Sunday, I had a backslide; I ate a pizza.
Now, this is where an important distinction comes in. I told some of my coworkers about it, and they said "well I guess your run of giving things up is over, here have a flapjack". This is wrong. Doing that is like falling over and saying "well I guess here's comfortable", or running out of petrol and deciding that where your car stopped is where you'll spend the rest of your life. It's just plain idiocy.
We are designed, as animals, to look for the easiest, most delicious path to take. This is most certainly not the one that is best for us, so we make an effort to not walk that path, but our nature, our old habits, and often the people around us can cause us to slip up from time to time. The most important part of a slip, however, is not the act of slipping; it's shaking it off, and getting back up. Forging ahead on the path that we've chosen, despite the fact that we fell off it a little bit.