Tax Time … It Can Drive You to Drink


Tax time is usually nothing to joke about but we here at VMail Weekend agree it can be something that drives you to drink. A few weeks ago, we reached out to our Weekend readers to find out what cocktails they turn to in Spring. In the meantime, we thought we’d get the party started with a few responses from the Jobson staff and a lone entry from the optical industry.

And while we’re at it, in honor of the upcoming tax deadline (Why April 18? More on that later) here’s a look at the tax filing habits of some of our Weekend contributors.

Peggy Gartin, Social Media Manager, Carl Zeiss Vision

I may be going against the grain, but my favorite springtime cocktail is beer. A saison or a nice, golden IPA with a hint of citrus is great for Sunday brunch, and you can even mix it with orange juice for a “beer-mosa.”

As for my taxes, I do my own with the help of software.This makes absolutely no sense, as my husband is an accountant. But seeing the numbers myself spurs me to make those end-of-year charitable donations.

Jamie Wilson, Associate Editor, Vision Monday

I’m relatively new to the “Big Kids Club.” 2016 was more or less a steady year and being single and childless, I don’t have much going on when it comes to filing my taxes. All I do is punch in the necessary information into TurboTax, and voila my taxes are done. I know it won’t always be this easy, so I’m going to bask in the simplicity of filing my taxes for as long as I can. For me, that means enjoying a glass (most likely two) of a Cabernet Sauvignon or Tempranillo, eating carbs and fancy cheese and giving myself a pat on the back for meeting the deadline.

Stephanie Sengwe, Assistant Editor, Vision Monday

The fact that I go to my mother’s accountant to get my taxes done doesn’t mean I hand in my returns on time. How Millennial of me, right? At the beginning of each tax season, I vow to go and drop off my returns in early February, but for some reason (really because I procrastinate), that dream just never manifests.

Last year, having been a recent graduate, I was so eager to prove to myself that I’m good at adulting and had everything done by mid-March. By the time January rolled around this year, however, all that “I’m officially out in the world,” hype had dwindled and I went back to old habits, filing my taxes one week before the deadline.

In-between the tax season fracas, I’ve been drinking mojitos because nothing reminds me that it’s spring like mint in my beverage. Mojitos are great because when done right, they offer that kick from alcohol, without getting you drunk. Whenever I feel like taking the edge off without going overboard, the Cuban drink is my go-to. I recently tried a pear mojito for the first time and found it to be better than my usual—the mango mojito. The pear flavor blended much better with the lime, rum and mint.

Mark Tosh, Senior Editor, Vision Monday

Income taxes are complex, so at this time of year I like to keep my drinks simple.

With all of the questions about deductions, interest, dividends, mortgage fees, IRAs, FSAs, 401-ks and IPAs (oops, that last one doesn’t belong in my tax file), it’s nice to have a simple, cold, refreshing drink on or about April 15. Or April 18 this year, if you’re a stickler for details, and I understand the IRS can be a bit obsessive about some of what many of us would call the incidental things.

So, when Monday night rolls around and our CPA says he’s hit the send button on the e-filing, I’m going to grab a cold pint of Union Jack IPA. Brewed, surprisingly, not in the U.K. but at the Paso Robles, Calif.-based Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Union Jack “rings all of the bells of an aggressively hopped West Coast IPA, but with an astonishing balance that stands out from the crowd,” the brewer notes on its website.

For the aficionados among us, the real secret to Union Jack IPA’s distinct flavor is that it’s double dry‐hopped, creating “bold grapefruit, tangerine and citrus flavors, all contrasted by pale malt sweetness to rein in the intensity.”

Now, if I could only find a way to double dry-hop those darn tax forms so they don’t stand out from the crowd.

Joe Bowen, Web Content & LMS Editor, Vision Monday

I am a single malt scotch drinker, so I was surprised when my independent neighborhood wine store started selling McCarthy’s Oregon Single Malt Whiskey. Because of the fact that it’s not distilled in Scotland, it can’t technically be called scotch, but it tastes a whole lot like a scotch from the Islay region of Scotland.

As for taxes (an interesting segue from alcoholic beverages), I am a recent transplant from Chicago, so my taxes are still done by my tax guy there. He’s very good with artist taxes, and very reliable. If you talk to any actor in Chicago, there’s a good chance he’s doing their taxes as well.

More Tax Return Reads Outlines 9 Tax Nightmares. Think having your refund stolen or forgetting to declare income from a freelance gig.

Kiplingers 10 Smart Uses for Your Tax Return. You just got a chunk of change, now what? These tips include paying off credit card debt or rebuilding your emergency fund.

And Finally … Why Is Tax Day April 18??

According to Kiplingers, tax day will be April 18, 2017, three days after the traditional April 15 tax deadline.

“The cause is a Washington, D.C. holiday called Emancipation Day, which celebrates the end of slavery in the District of Columbia (which actually predated Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation by nine months). It's usually celebrated on April 16, or the closest weekday, in this case, Monday, April 17.

And since federal law says that tax day must be either the 15th or the first succeeding day that isn't a Saturday, Sunday or a holiday, which means the tax deadline this year is April 18.”

Thanks Kiplingers, for clearing that up.