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Chet Baker, Tax Hound

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I was good this year. I did the bulk of my tax preparation in January, surprising the daylights out of myself. I knew that, as onerous as it is to organize and figure up a million flying receipts, it would be even less fun in April.

Even if you have someone prepare your taxes, for a freelancer like me, the bulk of the work has to happen on your own desk. I crunch everything down to neat figures encased in little penciled boxes, and supply that to my preparer, Jim. I like Jim, partly because I can make him laugh any time. Much of what I do for a living actually turns out to be pretty funny.

Loyal to Rea and Associates, I don't patronize Liberty Tax Preparersno matter how alluringly Miss Liberty, the Bearded Woman, waves from the corner of Acme and Greene. I'm sorry, but this is a major economic indicator right there--a grown man being willing to put on a verdigris gown and tiara and wave all day in the freezing cold. There's one guy who waves, who won't wear the starry crown. I don't blame him. Then there's this girl who jumps up and down, tirelessly. Makes you want to get a paintball gun.

Right across the street, there are people walking up and down with giant cardboard pizzas on their bellies. I wonder what it's like to be a pizza person. It could happen. It probably pays better than being a natural history essayist.

Yes, this is another Chet Baker post. No, I didn't find him a new home. I have gotten three private emails from people about my April 1st post, in which I said we'd made the difficult decision to find Chet Baker a new home. Sincere, tearful letters from people begging me to reconsider. Remember when Tweety Bird would put his hands behind his back and bat his eyes and say, "Dey don't know me vewwy well, do dey?"I have had Charlie the macaw for 22 years. In that time, he has perforated me more times than I care to recount. He is a preferential chewer, which is to say he chooses the most valuable thing in sight to destroy, with books and electronics his top picks. He screams like a maniac, lunges at Bill's feet, kicks Chet Baker out of his soft bed, and poops everywhere. And I haven't even come close to getting rid of HIM. I love him. And I cannot think of anything Chet Baker could do that could move me to give him up. If Chet Baker had a rage attack and chewed off my left arm, I'd say, "Whew! Good thing I'm right handed! Here, Baker. Want a bikkit?"

So that thing about getting rid of Chet was a joke, son, an April Fool's joke, and not a very funny one, it turns out. Chet Baker (and Charlie) are here to stay, forever in my heart and home.

Like I said, I have plenty of help with my taxes.
You have me, Mether. I, Chet Baker, am here to help organize your receipts. What are receipts? Are they like bikkits? May I have a bikkit? Or at least, can you mess with me right now? I would like to be messed with. Or to have a bikkit. Your choice. Or we could take a walk. It is not that cold outside.

Chet Baker. You are very talkative, and Mether is busy today. How did you get the idea that it would be all right to sit upon my tax papers?Well, it is the best place in the whole house to watch for chiptymunks, up here on your table. Oh. Are these receipts that I am sitting on?

Yes they are, little Cat Dog, who is so fond of sitting up high and getting in the way of progress. But I am taking a break now. I would rather watch for chiptymunks with you for a little while than do this, any day. You smell like sunshine.

So I'd written this post and I got an email from my new bloggrrl friend Murr Brewster who writes this hilarious blog called Murrmurrs. She said she shouldn't be emailing because she was supposedly "finishing up her taxes"--we all know how that generally goes. So I sent her the photo directly above, of Chet Baker keeping my receipts warm with his fanny. Oh, sorry, Brits, his bum.
I wrote, "This is what tax day looks like in Whipple, Ohio."

And Murr freaked out and sent me this photo of what tax prep day looks like in Portland, Oregon:photo by Murr Brewster

Different animal, same idea. Sit on the important stuff. Get butt all over the thing they're working on at the moment. Then they can't ignore you. Now, we all know you can't pose a cat. And I beg you to note what's on Murr's computer screen. It is he, Chet Baker, whose fame stretches all the way across this great, expensive country of ours. Happy IRS Day!


Wait a minute! Today's not tax day is it? Don't I have twenty eight or so hours left? Sorry, no pics of my dog sitting on the receipts. My Doberman is too big, you cannot see the receipts. Besides, she ate them. My next dog will be a Boston Terrier. Maybe then, I can get homeowners insurance since I won't have a BAD Dog anymore. Most of us knew you were kidding about getting rid of Chet, but it was awful tempting to volunteer to "rehome" him just in case you weren't.

Bebe, our faithful Havanese, is also something of a "Cat Dog" with a similar taste for sitting on elevated objects (including my own noggin while I'm slumped in my reading chair) and gazing out windows.

Chet Baker sits upon the tax receipts so that Charlie cannot chew them up or poop on them. Good Dog!

=snort, giggle= Chet, you are so helpful to Mether. You claim him as a dependent right, Julie?

The transcontinental, nearly mirror image Tax Dog/Tax Cat is a hoot ! There have been several commercials on TV this season where someone states they have "people" to help with taxes, Chet takes that to a whole new level.
I checked out the Murrmurrs Blog and it looks like fun, thanks for the suggestion.

I was a Good Girl this year and did my taxes early. My reward? A refund that I spent on my lovely new camera and lenses. I probably got done early because nobody tried to sit on my tax papers.


Geoff totally needs a BT to warm up his receipts and 10-99's. All that is sitting on his tax paperwork right now is a Diet Coke and a bag of pretzels.

Skanky the one-eyed wonder cat would do plant his bottom on my tax stuff if I did my taxes at home.

Happy Tax Day, Ms. Zick. I'm glad you are feeling better.

I had a similar response from some folks when the meteor struck my yard on April first.

Love both those taxanimal pics, even the cat.

I'm swooning. I love this post. Charlie, Chet, bikkits.

Chetty may have had too many bikkits judging from that back end!!!arf arf!
Dixie Trixie

Trixie, stop that! Get down from the keyboard. Rude doggie....

Holy Moley, Mether, you're so good a photographer that you made my crappy photograph look good! Personally I take perverse pleasure in knowing I have cat butt-prints on my taxes. That's why I send them by mail.

Awww-the photos for Chet B and Murr's cat look for all the world as though they are looking w-a-y-y-y across the country at each other.

Those of us who have felines know they read by absorption -- and, having seen Baker caught in the act*, I now pronounce him: A cat. (*Unless, of course, he was merely using his butt to notarize the document.)

I think sitting on important papers is a genetic thing for cats and dogs, what about rabbits Birdchick?
You got me with your Fools post, of course I read it on April 2.

You crack me up! You will be on my blogroll forever...
You are not only the ultimate naturalist, artist..
but you have a wonderful sidekick..
Chet Baker.
I offered to take him off your hands..but I guess you were only kidding...I dont blame you...who could part with a face like that!

I don't think that would be a good idea in my house. My 19 year old cat leaks where ever she sits, and I think Revenue Canada would be mean if they audited a person who had pee covered receipts. And the puppy would just slowly, thoughtfully, masticate through her meditations if allowed near said receipts. They are too much like Kleenex, something far too tempting to pass up.

Dawn, I think you have got it wrong. Mether is my sidekick. She is a good one, because she is able to type and work the camera and upload pictures of me. But do not forget who is the real star. It is me, Chet Baker, who smells like sunshine, and puts his stamp of approval on everything Mether does.

I did not think the April Fool's joke was particularly funny, by the way.

Chet Baker, Himself

I just love your blog and peeking in on your most interesting life. You write so beautifully. I'm in Vancouver Washington. I got to you thru Clare on the House.

Create a blog. A new one:

"The Real Chet Baker"

... :o)

Dixie Trixie, he is getting a little thick. Phoebe calls him Tubbeh. We can trace it to an excess of bikkits, and a run of lousy weather. But he sits by the cabinet where the bikkits live, clearing his throat. If nobody responds, he catpaws the Lazy Susan around, paws the bikkit jar out, and roo's until someone comes to open it for him. It is not good.

Love your blog. I am your April Fool as I bought your Chet story.


Niblet wouldn't sit on my receipts; he would eat them.

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