I was working from home and I remembered that my 1099 tax forms were due. TODAY. It was January 31, the last day they could be postmarked without receiving a penalty. The deadline had totally slipped my mind until the afternoon. I managed to quickly transport the entire box of forms to the library where I met up with one of my co-workers. All we needed to do was validate, stuff and transport them to the post office by the end of the day. Somehow, the time just kept passing closer and closer to the deadline and I knew that we were going to miss it entirely. For some unexplained reason, we hadn’t even begun the task. The absolute WORST part was not knowing how much the penalty was going to be! Some of you may not realize that Accountants are programmed to think in terms of economic gains and losses, and this was no exception. Just when the post office was ready to close for the day and we sat paralyzed with an entire box of unprocessed tax forms, I heard the sound of a meowing cat hurling its body into the door. As I slowly shifted into consciousness, I realized the cat noise was coming from my bedroom, not the library. I had never been so ecstatic to get woken up by a yowling feline as I was when I realized my nightmare was not reality!
So, you say you’re not an Accountant but you are a parent? Let me spin it a different way. You have a teen in high school. You keep thinking of all of things you need to show them before they go away to college or out into the world on their own. There is so much to teach that you don’t know where to start, so you keep putting it off. Besides, it’s so much easier just to do it yourself! Before you know it, it is the August after high school graduation and your lesson plan is not complete. Learn from the Accountant and don’t miss the important deadlines. The cat will not be able to save you from real-life penalties such as unnecessary college debt and anxiety related to lack of preparation.