Cash is the Working Mans Tax Loophole

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.Golf Course Lineup DSC_0522

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.

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Craigslist Outage Caused by Irrational Mother

It appears Craigslist.orgDSC_0034, a popular free classified website, has had all communications lines disconnected by a mother to protest her son requiring stitches after she purchased a bicycle from another sight user. “The bicycle did not have any warning saying balance was required on a two wheeled vehicle” she claims. Officials from the organization have neither confirmed or denied the cause of the outage. They also have not commented on whether the woman, or her son, may be unbalanced. No word has been released on when the website will be restored. Bay Area NBC should be covering it soon November 24, 2014. 11/24/2014. 24Nov2014. 24November2104. 24/11/2014.

Independence Day Salute 2013

In honor of American freedom here are a couple pictures of me with old glory. Each picture contains a link to a local website.

Flag # 1 Overlook Park, Great Falls, Montana
This is home of the visitors center, offering many brochures about the Electric City.

Sparky’s Garage

I can’t speak for the food here, the Automotive memorabilia hanging on the outside of the building is fantastic.These pictures were taken on an early morning fitness walk, before most retail places are open.

Sparky’s Garage is located at the intersection where the US HWY 89 entered the south end of town before Interstate 15 was complete. In the 60’s there was a Standard Oil truck stop at the location. There was a Tastee Freeze just up the street.

Our family usually stopped for lunch in Dillon when we traveled to Utah for visits with my grandparents. Once there was a V W bus of hippies panhandling at the Tastee Freeze. They said they were on the way to a music festival in New York. My dad was skeptical of the bus making it that far. I often wonder if they begged enough gas and food to get there. Everybody who lived the sixties tries to make some connection to Woodstock. I choose to believe I talked to people who were headed there when I was ten.

Scenic Lookout on Mansfield Heritage Route

The stretch of Interstate 15 between Butte and Great Falls is known as Mike and Maureen Mansfield Heritage Highway. Mike Mansfield was a long serving statesman from the State of Montana. When John F. Kennedy traveled to Great Falls in 1963 he had dinner at Mansfield’s childhood home. It was a modest house in an old part of town. The president coming to dinner at the Mansfield’s caused quite a stir in town. The president’s speech at Memorial stadium was an experience a five year old would never forget, though I could not tell you any content.

These pictures are all taken from the Scenic Overlook between exit 244 and 247, accessible from the southbound lane only. Both exits are easy off-on if you are traveling north but would like to stop here. There is a casual staircase to climb to the platform with the best view, but the steel Hardy bridge on the recreation road can be seen from the parking area.

Beaverslide Haystack

The unique haystack is made by these devices known as a beaverslide.  Originally known as the Beaverhead County Hayslide, the name was shortened later. They were invented in the early 1900’s by ranchers in the Big Hole area. As the haystack is not portable once constructed the beaverslide is moved to make another stack. Also this lack of portability makes it only useful for feeding your own livestock, not selling hay to others. A few ranches around Montana still use horses to operate them, more practical as fuel prices rise.

The model behind glass is in the Beaverhead County Musuem.

New Exhaust For The Honda

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.

Mission Mountains

On Highway 93 between Missoula and Polson. Yes, it is July 31. Yes, that is snowcaps on the mountains. Yes, it is 90 degrees where I am standing. Highway 93 is much improved from the last time I drove it. In the past it was common to get behind a caravan of motorhomes on their way to Glacier Park. Now there are several passing lanes and four lane a good part of the way.

Taco Tuesday at the Angus Bar Cascade Montana

$1 Tacos every Tuesday at the Angus

She put the sign under the exit sign. Get away from me with that camera.

I didn’t get her name, but she called me a few names for getting her picture in those overalls. It is a local meeting place and with low cost food, can it get any better.

Mormon Pioneer Day Answers My Big Question

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.

Did you know our 3rd great grandfather, Thomas Woolsey (Wolsey) was one of those 120 pioneers who arrived in the valley on July 22nd? He was part of the Mormon Battalion and marched from Iowa to San Diego, then back to Iowa, then on horseback to the valley (as part of that first group), then back to Iowa to help others to the valley, then back to Iowa and back to the valley. During that first trip from Iowa to the valley, he and three other men split off to go to Fort Pueblo, CO to help Mormon Battalion members and Mormons from Mississippi who were sick. He helped bring them back to meet up with that first main group with Brigham Young. Then he arrived in the valley on the 22nd with the rest of that 120.

I don’t understand DNA, but Grampa Woolsey put something in my blood.