This morning I’m going to my accountant’s office to have my yearly taxes done.

Oh, joy. Taxes. That necessary evil we all tend to worry about.

Yesterday I went through everything I’d need to take with me. I took the time to add long lines of numbers on a calculator and do them twice to make sure.

The Chair In Front Of The Desk:

At his office, I will sit in a chair in front of his desk. He will ask the typical questions and I will refer to my sheets of paper where everything is written down in my nearly indecipherable handwriting.

After that, I will sit quietly, my heart kind of skidding along, worrying how big the numbers he comes up with will be. Then I’ll write 2 checks from my checking account; one to the state and one to the federal government.

That amount of time that I sit there as he checks off things and adds them up is similar to driving to have a root canal done. Wondering how painful it’s going to be once you get there.

Taxes are a tedious but fundamental part of life.

What do they say? Death and taxes are the two things that you can always depend on?

Compulsive Factoid Collector:

Naturally, being the compulsive factoid collector that I am, I Googled it:

Nothing is certain but death and taxes is a proverb that means one cannot avoid the inevitable, that certain things in life are common to all men and cannot be avoided. A man may not escape death, and a man cannot escape paying taxes. The origin of the phrase is generally attributed to Benjamin Franklin.

Well, that makes sense.

Most likely while you are reading this, I am sitting in that straight-back chair as I mentally work my pretend worry beads in my hands.

Yes, I looked that up as well…

What is the purpose of worry beads?

The string of beads is known as worry beads or komboloi, which Greeks use to soothe themselves, especially during difficult times. Worry beads or komboloi are loosely based on prayer beads that are used in different religions to keep track of prayers and calm the mind.

I have this habit of looking up obscure things. Things that probably will never matter.

I think perhaps it’s to calm my mind.

Cracks In The Sidewalk:

In a way it reminds me of not stepping on the sidewalk cracks as a child, worrying about breaking my mother’s back.

I considered my granny my mother, and she was old. So it was especially important to my young self not to let my shoe in any way touch that jagged crack.

That she was going to die was something I already knew, because she had the tendency to remind me about it often enough.

I still have a bit of anxiety about stepping on sidewalk cracks.

That habit sort of followed me into adulthood and remains something I’m very aware of to this day.

Where I Probably Am Right Now:

I am probably sitting in that straight-back chair in front of my accountant’s desk thinking about those cracks in the sidewalk at this very moment.

Trying not to step on sidewalk cracks became an acrobatic test of sorts. And you know, the brain is funny that way. Once you intensely recall something, you’re not likely to ever forget it.

Even more so, you’re not likely to allow yourself to ease up on not stepping on those cracks. Because of course this habit is meaningless except for that little kernel of space it occupies in your head.

Yes, this is another ramble of a post. Sorry.

Compulsive Habits Are Often Irresistible:

I am also a little compulsive about saying or writing a word and then immediately thinking about all the things that word can mean.

For instance, let’s take the word “rambler.”

A rambler can be a house. A ranch-style house.

It can be a person who walks for pleasure.

A rambler can also be a weak-stemmed plant that straggles over other vegetation.

It can also mean a person who lacks organization in his or her speech or writing.

I’m rambling because I’m already a little nervous about sitting in that chair and waiting and fidgeting while he looks up everything about the current tax codes.

And then he’ll look up at me and either smile or frown.

Actually, now that I think about it, he always smiles. Whether it’s bad news or good news, he makes it a practice to smile.

So I never know what’s coming next.

Quirks Of Nature (And Other BS):

Did you know that there is something called: 10 Quirks Of Nature That’ll Make You Scratch Your Head? Yes, it is an online article that popped up.

Naturally, I had to read it. Another one of my quirks. I often follow the bouncing ball (Google) wherever it leads.

And here is that list of 10 Quirks Of Nature That’ll Make you Scratch Your Head:

  • The origin of life
  • Neuroplasticity
  • Light Pillars
  • Sleep
  • Cambrian Explosion
  • Immortal species
  • Homing
  • Loricifera
  • Rotifers
  • Basking Sharks

I tend to be one who rambles when I’m a bit nervous. And I come up with all kinds of unnecessary details that really don’t pertain to the subject matter.

And yes, I was that kid who sometimes not only read the dictionary but the encyclopedia as well.

I’ll be back tomorrow. When I will be in a different frame of mine because my taxes are done and my checks are on their way to their destinations.


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  1. Hope your meeting wasn’t too painful, and that you escaped without having to write large checks. Interesting facts about those common phrases. I don’t think I knew Ben Franklin was responsible for the “death and taxes” line.

  2. Dear Brenda, getting taxes done is very stressful…! I think I’m one of a few people who don’t mind paying taxes. I value the services my taxes pay for….school for our kids, a response to my 919 call, municipal water and trash pick up, road maintenance. What I object to are multimillionaire who can afford tax accountants and lawyers that minimize their tax obligations…..not paying their fair share. Sorry for my rant. It’s tax time.

  3. Brian does our taxes using Turbo Tax, but ours are simple. If they were complicated, we’d have an accountant do them.

    I know seniors can get their taxes done for free (I believe local libraries usually offer the service, or else AARP), but I don’t know if they do more complicated ones, like yours. Perhaps something to look into for next year.

  4. Brenda, here’s another meaning for “rambler”. I didn’t read the above posts so someone else might have already mentioned it but there used to be an automobile which my grandparents owned called the Nash Rambler. Nash was a make of car, not sure whether that was the name of the company who manufactured it or a subsidiary of another company. That’s my contribution to the useless info game for today! Hope your taxes turned out to be not too painful.

  5. Hmmm, who doesn’t read the dictionary and the Encyclopedia (at least, when they used to be actually published as a whole set of books). I still check them regularly on line, there always seems to be something that comes up when I’ m reading an article online or doing some research that I have no idea about or a word I don’t know, and use the handy tools online. I also have an old fashioned “reference library” set-up at home with real books. I worry about what will happen to them when I pass, as to me they are of incalculable value. I gave up trying not to step on any cracks some years ago, as the sidewalks now are not replaced as often as they used to be. Such is life. One thing I still avoid doing, though, is stepping on an ant if I don’t want it to rain. Is that just a Wisconsin weirdo thing? It is reassuring that I am not the only person in the world who looks down at the sidewalk as she’s walking.

  6. I love your rambles, Brenda. They are always entertaining and informative! Nobody likes doing taxes! We can all feel your pain there! I hope you are able to breath a big sigh of relief soon. They’ll be done, and you’ll have a whole year before you have to think about them again. I remember that saying… Step on a crack, you break your mother’s back. Step on a line, you break your father’s spine. I always avoided stepping on them too, lol. As an adult, if I’m out walking, I sometimes can feel that urge to avoid them, but then I will close my eyes, so I can’t see the ground for a brief moment, and tell myself to just walk and don’t look down, lol. That usually works. The kitties look so cute today. Enjoy some snuggles with them when you get home.

  7. Rambler was also a vehicle in the late 50s,early 60s…
    I used to get tense at the annual visit to the tax man, there’s many things out of our control that could cause a problem,never could figure it though,was only my husband’s income and we always got a refund…go figure🤔
    The cats are adorable and we’ve made it to March,spring can’t be to far away,I hope.

    1. I don’t know what, in terms of dental care, I’m looking at. Haven’t even been because 1) didn’t have dental insurance 2) I always got shingles or trigeminal neuralgia after going to the dentist. So I just stopped going. I know that was probably a huge mistake.

  8. Where The Forest Meets The Sky is a wonderful book. I was so invested in her characters I kept checking the percentage of book left because I didn’t want it to end😔. I have already placed a pre-order for her third book.
    Rambler brought to mind automobile, which reveals my age group😁
    Your info about the sounds Ivy makes solved a mystery for me. Occasionally at night I hear Misty give out a mournful howl, and now I can relax about it.
    I love your kitchen, and have the garden shed sign in my Amazon cart.
    I am so excited to see what you do with your shade garden there, and what your neighbors are doing in your new lovely place to live.

  9. I would guess you were a very good student in school. You must have had so much knowledge by the time you graduated!

  10. I also like to look things up…used to do it via the encyclopedia (still have those World Books). Now I use google. I think I am also a rambler…in other words, a stream of consciousness.

      1. You never know, Brenda, what might prove a flash of insight or a moment of inspiration to someone else.

  11. I started doing my taxes on turbotax about 6 years ago and am so happy with it. I love that it brings forward the previous years information automatically. No chasing down numbers and I finally stopped itemizing a couple of years ago so it’s so much shorter. Good luck with yours.

    1. Mine is kind of complicated because being a blogger, my home is my place of work. So there are all those deductions I can take for rent, utilities, etc. And then there are the write-offs like decor, computer, camera.

  12. You remind me of the movie with Jack Nicholson “As Good as it Gets”. Have you seen it? Hilarious!! Glad you’re back 😜. This Brenda cracks me up!!

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