Monthly Archives: March 2010

Your Taxes At Work

I can’t help myself, I have to rant. So seven weeks ago I lodged a tax return, through a tax agent, supposed to take two weeks to process. The Australian Tax Office has been doing a major computer system overhaul, so I was warned my refund could take a month. It’s more than a month. Looked on the ATO website, seems like my refund is one of the unlucky ones taking longer. Kindly however, the tax office provides a phone number you can call if you would like to check on the progress of your refund. So helpful.

Call One: “Thank you for calling the ATO. Our service is currently experiencing peak demand and we are unable to answer your call at this time. Our website may have the answer to your question.” Um. Why answer the phone to tell me you can’t answer the phone? That just costs me money and annoys me.

Call Two: “Welcome to the ATO individual info line” … follow the prompts to track progress of my individual tax return … “If your return was lodged electronically, you should receive a refund within two weeks of lodgment.” Ah yeah I know that, that’s why I’m calling. “If your return was lodged more than two weeks ago, please call the number you just called to speak to an operator for assistance. _click_” Um, why make me go through the button-pushing process to tell me something I already know, and then hang up on me? Why exactly do they think I was calling?

Calls Three- Five: As per Call One.

Head-desking violently now.

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Well Supported

Vague, unmotivated, dangerously forgetful, hair-trigger grump factor, not sleeping well, tired. Inability to focus on any one thing for longer than fifteen minutes. Sense of humour intact. Drinking coffee to stay awake through the day. Not eating well. Not motivated to exercise, trouble getting out of bed. Look, I know all this is self-perpetuating. Can’t sleep -> tired -> no exercise -> no endorphins -> tired -> coffee -> no focus -> things to do -> coffee -> can’t sleep -> tired -> low mood -> can’t sleep -> tired. But wired. Awake at completely the wrong end of the day.

Ran out of St John’s Wort ‘Mood Support’ (recommended by my GP, seems to help). Went to the supermarket: No St John’s Wort. Felt grumpy. Was amused by feeling grumpy. Shared thought with friend who decided that SJW being for ‘mood support’ made her mood feel high-maintenance. Agreed that boobs get support, thus why shouldn’t moods? Henceforth all moods will be described according to cup size, from A to Double D.

Current mood = C. More than a handful; not so low that I can’t see the funny side.

Solution: Work more, sleep more, live more, have more fun. With apologies to Laura Marling. Which reminds me, I haven’t been swimming in weeks.

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Mind is a Razorblade

Couple of days ago I had my head shaved to raise money for the Leukaemia Foundation. My theory being, I don’t have a whole lot of money, but I have this semi-renewable resource. So along with a couple of other people from my year, I duly sat in the student common room and had my hair mowed down to sub-stubble.

For several days beforehand I was vaguely apprehensive about it. Not out of fear of what I would look like – I went for a number two cut about fifteen years ago, so I knew to expect to look like my dad. What was bugging me was the idea of this all taking place in a public space. I couldn’t get Seamus Heaney’s poem ‘Punishment’ out of my head. Read it here. Not to mention also concentration camps, prisons, and the charming Army barber at Kapooka who will live forever in my memory for his drawled “Round here you get two choices: Which chair you sit in, and whether you want a short back and sides or a number two.”

Overthinking things much? I decided to suck it up and just radiate.

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Last Minute Lucy

Please note that my name is probably not lucy.

I had an assignment due today and i finished it for submission five minutes before the deadline. Which in my book is five minutes early. However, to achieve this pinnacle of timeliness, I offered up an entire weekend, one sleepless night, nine times more research papers than the ones I ended up referencing, a Friday, two hours in the anatomy lab, three swims, four dog walks, one episode of The Mentalist (I know, I know, it’s crap, but it amuses me and it’s all I really watch). Not to mention the weight I did not pull around the house, the calls I did not make, and the time I did not spend with someone somewhere better.

This was not a paper which came by surprise. In fact, I knew I had to do it over a year ago. I took too long to choose a topic, and I over researched it to the nth degree. And for some bizarre reason I could not choke the words out in a measured and reasonable way in order to balance my time and enjoy at least part of a weekend. I don’t want to do that again.

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