In the movie Gran Torino, Walt Kowalski goes to a priest for confession of his sins to fulfill his wife’s final wishes. One burden the character, played by Clint Eastwood, releases from his conscience is the making of a few dollars on a boat he bought and sold for cash. Walt had failed to pay taxes on this income knowing it could not be traced by the IRS.
How common is the practice by weekend wrench turning types of stiffing the IRS of a few bucks? According to the website NOLO.com the underground economy costs the US $500 billion in tax revenue per year. One eBay seller actually posted a statement that he would only accept forms of payment that would not be reported because “I am not gonna pay $3000 to the government to sell my car.” He made this statement even though he owns a wrecking yard that buys and sells car for profit everyday.
The next time you are at a car show dreaming of owning that Street Rod with the Fifty Thousand Dollar price in the window, just remember the price might be Thirty Five Thousand if you offer to pay cash, no receipt required. Maybe you don’t want to carry the burden on your conscience, like Walt Kowalski.
My Honda is an ’81. Even though it has been garaged since new the mufflers were rusted through. I mentioned that I was hesitant about tackling the replacement. Without hesitation my brother-in-law said “Bring it over, I’ll take care of it.” . Dave was a machinist in a former life, meaning his margins are measured in thousandths.
He quickly sized it up and finished the job.
Fixed my motorcycle, put up with my sister all these years, can he possibly get any better. “I’ll buy dinner.” he says. Somebody pinch me.
I have often wondered about my passion for traveling. I have often lived 50 or more miles from work or school. Driven, walked, bicycled and ridden buses great distances daily. In June I traveled by train and Greyhound bus from Montana to South Carolina, stayed over night, and drove my sisters car back to Montana. I have enjoyed every moment. Where does this come from? Is it an affliction? Is it hereditary? Above is the day my eldest son returned from Afghanistan. now he lives in Hawaii. Second are my nieces sons. They traveled from Arizona to take a boat ride at The Gates of The Mountains about 20 miles north of Helena.
My cousin Matt may have answered the question of this passion for travel today. The State of Utah is celebrating Pioneer Day today. A relative was one of the pioneers with Brigham Young as he crossed America looking for the promised land. Actually my ancestor was not with the group the entire trip. It appears he had my penchant for excess travel as you will read in this excerpt of the message I received today.
An early morning walk on the road leading to Hauser Dam starts the day.
I saw more deer than people along the way.
I am not much of a fisherman, can’t even catch them on camera. They were jumping.
Walk over. No down to the business of the day I have dreaded. You can’t put a value on life, but when you split with a spouse you must put a value on the things in your life. It is going to be a long day. Can I just take another walk?
This is a dish my mom used to make. I never asked how she made it. I just made my own recipe. Let’s see, she called it rice and okra. OK, I’ll put rice in there, and maybe some Okra. I remember it had a tomato sauce of some sort in it. OK I’ll throw in a few cans of diced tomato. The diced chili tomatoes with green peppers in seem closest to the taste I remember. Here is the recipe:
3 cups rice, Rival cooker, easy
2 15 Oz cans Hunt’s diced tomatoes
2 15 Oz cans Hunt’s chili diced tomatoes
1 16 Oz frozen bag PictSweet cut Okra
Put the tomatoes in a microwave safe container. Cut a bit of the top of the Okra bag, add a little water. Put these in the microwave until the bag starts to steam. Move the rice from the cooker to the container you plan to transport the food in (crock pot, roaster). Drain the okra. Put most of the okra on top of the rice. Cover with tomatoes. Add remaining okra for style.