Frivolous Monsters

Ballroom Dancing

Having attended the local Council writing group since its inception I’d clearly got in with the Arts Development Officer, Farrell, because whilst I offered to help her out generally I did also manage to pick up small amounts of paid work from her.

HM Revenue and Customs form

As this figure totalled something about a hundred pounds – a mighty three-figure sum and my total annual income that year – it was well below the tax threshold that even though I imagined I wouldn’t have been liable to pay tax I thought I’d probably still need to submit the appropriate paperwork. Although, saying this, I had no clue where you were even supposed to begin.

Looking into this I found that The Taxman had a page on the internet covering all of this with a list of ten frequently asked questions.

That was fine, I thought.

Ten questions.

I can do this.

I clicked the top one to find that instead of an answer it only gave me a subset of ten more questions: I immediately extrapolated this up to a hundred questions in total and began to feel like I was drowning in complexity.

Clicking the top question again I found again only ten more questions and guessed that this now gave a total of a thousand questions…only for as long as I didn’t dare to click on anything else.

I turned the computer off, never went back, and as my annual income dropped to zero in the following years I only saw this as a positive because at least there was no phantom paperwork to worry about as I moved around the ballroom of life hoping never to bump into The Taxman: my partner in a dance of which I didn’t know the steps.



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9 thoughts on “Ballroom Dancing

  1. It is a very complicated dance indeed and you’re probably best sitting it out like the wallflower at a school dance but being secretly glad that you have nothing of interest to offer such a demanding partner. Still, as death and taxes are the only two certainties in life, you’re doing well so far.

  2. Oh the whole tax affair can turn into a nightmare. I know someone who is about to embark on a court case in Europe to defend 10 years of not submitting an appropriate tax return – sadly due to ill-health! The Taxman get’s you in the end.

    • I struggle with forms, and that world of things, and have heard it said that the tax laws are so complex now that the printed versions are so heavy that official tax people can no longer carry them about with them.

      If I ever become rich from getting my book published – of which I now have a completed draft which I’ve printed out and am editing with the official red pen – I will happily pay someone to sort this all out.

  3. oh the taxman, the taxman! ahhh!

    I’m sure everyone has a story. mine started when i got a cheque for £689 rebate in 2012.

    Beware a taxmam bearing false gifts and NEVER cash a rebate cheque and buy a plane ticket to visit your long lost brother in California! now 5 years later I srill owe the taxman money, (not sure how after PAYE amd now a pension) which they relentlesly persue with all the compassion of a robot.

    You had a lucky escape!

    • You hear stories like that and, like you say, I never understand how they happen.

      And for having escaped…escaped for now, perhaps? If I get this bit printed there may be repercussions? I don’t know. There’s something worse in my second book, which I’m already living and writing and planning, of which I’ve never spoken yet, which may not be looked on kindly by others in authority.

      Still, I have to find success before those problems, eh? Every cloud.

      Keep running Denise.

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