Thursday, April 16, 2009


barleys upstairs
Originally uploaded by mygothlaundry
I paid taxes yesterday. This is the first time, owing partly to my continued extreme poverty which in itself is due to my unfortunate habit of having children - if twice can be called a habit - who then redeem themselves by being most excellent tax deductions. So I've never had to actually pay taxes before, or, rather, the taxes I have always paid have come out of my paycheck and I learned long ago never to glance at them for fear that it would turn me into a raging Republican or something. Although, come to think of it, the Republicans have no problem with taxing poor people; it's rich people and corporations they believe should go untaxed.

However, I have now actually had to pay real taxes to the state of North Carolina. I did not have to pay the federal taxes, thank you President Obama and the first time homebuyers credit. I feel, Mr. President, that you would be wise to include a More Than One Dog tax credit as soon as possible as well - every patriotic dog loving American should go for this - and maybe possibly a First Time Washer/Dryer Buyer credit as well as a First Home Buyers First, Second, Third and So On Encounters With Lots of Mysterious Leaks credit but, hey, while you're writing those up, I'm totally into the home buying one. North Carolina should follow your lead. They should, but alas they did not, and in addition to the yearly indignity of the roughtly $32 they charge me as a property tax on my car - you can tell I drive a real serious car - I had to give them over ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS yesterday. I also had to give them $33 for Audrey, who makes hardly any money and gets hit with taxes every year because I have no grandchildren. I paid them for her since I don't want any grandchildren any time soon and don't want her to start getting those shiny stars of tax deduction love in her eyes.

So now I have paid taxes. I want to get something for my money and I'm trying to figure out how to maximize my investment. I went out and drove around on the roads and thought, yeah, these are MY roads, baby. Get out of my way! Entitlement is great. That old lady I ran into the ditch probably wasn't a taxpayer, like me. Now, what else can I do? My kids are out of the public schools, but possibly I could drop in on a 5th grade math class anyway? Gods know I could use the refresher, unless they're doing fractions or percentages, to which I am allergic. I thought about getting arrested or maybe just walking around - sidewalks! My sidewalks! - talking randomly to police officers but then thought that maybe I wasn't a big enough taxpayer for that. I guess I'll have to settle for continuing to use the parks.

In other news, Susan and I went to a Hatch Festival event last night: an opening at Blue Spiral. I do not quite get all the buzz about the Hatch Festival, although I'm deeply impressed by the amount they have succeeded in generating, but anyway the opening was cool and the show was really pretty good, if a little lacking in focus. Two large scale photos of gas stations by Mike Smith are really worth checking out. I hadn't been to Blue Spiral for a while so it was awesome just to wander around and look at art and think about how long it had been since I had done just that. Afterwards, we repaired to the second floor of Barleys to have a couple of beers and smoke cigarettes, thus, this photo. If you're looking for something to do, I recommend the whole sequence of events, starting with Blue Spiral and ending with a totally delicious New South lager at smoky upstairs Barleys. Pity they're not supported by the NC government or I would really feel like a good taxpayer.

A beer subsidy! Yes! You have my permission, North Carolina, to take my money and subsidize beer. As well as the arts, parks and sidewalks. You can take the extra money out of fraction teaching or math to pay for it if you need more. If we have to invade South Carolina - and, given the extra beer consumption we devoted North Carolinians will soon be indulging in, it will no doubt soon sound like a good idea - then that's okay too. You can toss $5 of my money or so towards that as long as we end up with Folly Beach. They can keep Columbia.

1 comment:

H said...

I love the red-felted, nine-foot pool tables at Barley's. The one in Greenville has them too. Spindale has a Barleys without pool tables. Spartanburg deserves a Barleys too, dang it.