A Tax Pfunny

The IRS sent me a letter last Friday. They audited my return and
denied two of my dependent deductions! I sent them the following

Dear Sirs:

I am responding to your letter denying the deduction for two of the
three dependents I claimed on my Federal Income Tax return. Thank
you. I have questioned whether these are my children or not for
years. They re evil and expensive.

It’s only fair that since they are minors and not my responsibility
that the government (who, evidently, is now taxing me more to care
for these waifs) knows something about them and what to expect over
the next year. You may apply next year to reassign them to me and
reinstate the deduction. This year they are yours!

The oldest, Kristen, is now 17. She is brilliant. Ask her! I suggest
you put her to work in your office where she can answer peoples’
questions about their returns. While she has had no formal training,
it has not seemed to hamper her knowledge of any other subject you
can name. Taxes should be a breeze. Next year she is going to
college. I think it’s wonderful that you will now be responsible for
that little expense. While you mull that over, keep in mind she has a
truck. It doesn’t run at the moment so you have the immediate
decision of appropriating some Department of Defense funds to fix the
vehicle or getting up early to drive her to school. Kristen also has
a boyfriend. Oh joy. While she possesses all the wisdom of the
universe, her alleged mother and I have felt it best to occasionally
remind her of the virtues of abstinence, and in the face of
overwhelming passion, safe sex. This is always uncomfortable and I’m
quite relieved you will be handling it in the future. May I suggest
you reinstate Jocelyn Elders who had a rather good handle on the

Patrick is 14. I’ve had my suspicions about this one. His eyes are a
little too close together for normal people. He may be a tax examiner
himself someday if you don’t incarcerate him first.

In February I was rudely awakened at three in the morning by a police
officer who was bringing Pat home. He and his friends were TP’ing
houses. In the future would you like him delivered to the local IRS
office or sent directly to Ogden, UT? Kids at 14 will do almost
anything on a dare. His hair is purple.

Permanent dye, temporary dye, what’s the big deal? Learn to deal with
it. You’ll have plenty of time since he is sitting out a few days of
school after instigating a food fight. I’ll take care of filing your
phone number with the vice principal. Oh yes, he, and all his
friends, have raging hormones. This is the house of testosterone and
it will be much more peaceful when he lives in your home. DO NOT
leave any of them unsupervised with girls, explosives, inflammables,
inflatables, vehicles or telephones. (I’m sure you’ll find the
telephones a source of unimaginable amusement, be sure to lock out
the 900 and 976 numbers!)

Heather is an alien. She slid through a time warp and appeared quite
by magic one year. I’m sure this one is yours. She is 10, going on
21. She came from a bad trip in the sixties. She wears tie-dyed
clothes, beads, sandals and hair that looks like Tiny Tim’s.
Fortunately you will be raising my taxes to help you offset the pinch
of her remedial reading courses. Hooked on Phonics is expensive so
the schools dropped it. Good news! You can buy it yourself for half
the amount of the deduction you are denying! It’s quite obvious we
were terrible parents (ask the other two) so they have “helped” raise
this one to a new level of terror. She cannot speak English. Most
people under twenty understand the curious patois she fashioned out
of valley girl/boys in the hood/reggae/yuppie/political doublespeak.
I don’t. The school sends her to a speech pathologist who has her
roll her R’s. It added a refreshing Mexican/Irish touch to her voice.
She wears hats backwards, pants baggy and wants one of her ears
pierced four more times. There is a fascination with tattoos that
worries me but I’m sure you can handle it. Bring a truck when you
come to get her, she sort of “nests” in her room and I think it would
be easier to move the entire thing than find out what it’s really
made of.

You denied two of the three deductions so I guess it’s only fair you
get to pick which two you will take. I prefer you take the two
youngest. I still go bankrupt with Kristen’s college expense but then
I’m free! If you take the two oldest at least I have time for
counseling before Heather becomes a teenager. If you take the two
girls, I won’t feel so bad about putting Patrick in a military
academy. Please let me know of your decision as soon as possible as I
have already increased the withholding on my W4 to cover the $395 in
additional tax and made a down payment on an airplane.

Yours Truly,
Mr. “John Smith”