Internet package tracking is a remarkable thing. How did I live without it? I log on every few hours and track "The Package" and unlike the episode of the same name featured in "Half-Life: Opposing Force" (okay so I have been playing a lot of Half-Life recently) my package is not dangerous. My package is a glorious shinny new "collector's edition" version of Half-Life 2. Below is the odyssey thus far. Hurry UPS men you have a sacred job to do!
Nov 16, 2004
4:39 A.M. LOUISVILLE, KY, US DEPARTURE SCAN
3:57 A.M. LOUISVILLE, KY, US DEPARTURE SCAN
12:20 A.M. LOUISVILLE, KY, US ARRIVAL SCAN
Nov 15, 2004
9:32 P.M. DALLAS/FT. TX, US DEPARTURE SCAN
8:00 P.M. DALLAS/FT. TX, US ORIGIN SCAN
6:53 P.M. DALLAS/FT. TX, US PICKIP SCAN
Does your citizenship have a price? Mine does, as of tomorrow I will value my citizenship at $2,400 plus all that intangible crap about "Being an American" they teach in civics books. I am a bit mad, it appears the IRS lost part of my application to provide me with a form that literally reads, "To the best of our knowledge, so-and-so is a citizen of the United States of America." Here I thought, being the government, they would be able to state a little more firmly if I was a citizen or not, but I digress. This statement sounds so trivial yet this piece of paper will be worth $2,400 to me. In order to get out of paying taxes in Japan, I have to prove I am a citizen. I need the IRS to do that, and they lost my form so now I have to fax them new stuff. In the meantime I AM paying taxes in Japan, thus I am shelling out $600 a month. Here is a fun practical mathematics problem, if I have given the Japanese government $2,400 and I pay $600 a month, how long have I been living in Japan? Keeping in mind that the IRS said the form would be processed and they would warn me of any errors in a month and I sent said form in in August, how many months late is the IRS in notifying me? Show all your work.
But there is good news. When I get this form in Japan gives me my money back, which will seem like a pay check and then some when this is all done. I am really quite mad at the IRS and that tomorrow I have to give out another 60,000 yen. I wouldn't mind (knowing I will get it back and all) but Christmas is coming up and I have things to buy (and OAOM nears completion and I long for the final mad sprint!)
Yet, I can't be too mad, after all Half-Life 2 is coming my way and in a month I will be coming home for a nice break. But I better have my tax forms by then or I will personally go down to the IRS and, well given the fact that I am completely at their mercy, I will do nothing but politely ask some pretty pointed questions!