Elliot I Love You But You’re Giving Me Such a Headache…Oy


a 1920 photo of people filling out tax forms at the IRS

I feel the need to discuss someone who does us a great service year after year.   I have twittered about him and I may have mentioned him once before here.  He’s a very nice man and Devoted Spouse and I have known him for probably 4 or 5 years now.  His name is Elliot and he is an Accountant.

Every year Elliot does our taxes and every year I say I’m going to find a new accountant.  Why you ask?  Because Elliot is the most disorganized mess of a person I have ever seen in my life.  His office makes my crap room look like something out of Architectural Digest or at least Better Homes and Gardens.  To walk into his office is to hope to yourself that your medical insurance premiums are paid up because it is like walking into a mine field…a mine field of books, papers, folders, boxes, and crap….crap everywhere.  Elliot is the Indiana Jones of Accountancy — heaven only knows what discoveries are yet to be found in his office.  You can’t find his desk.  He has a small table which is usually full and three chairs, two of which you just know he has swiped off paperwork, or yesterday’s lunch, prior to your arrival.  And where are the filing cabinets, hmmm Elliot?

Nice, harried, busy, over-worked, nervous but oh-so-friendly Elliot.  He does a good job on the taxes.  Every year it is the same thing.  We go in well-prepared, organized, with every scrap of paper separated in an accordian file and all of it is divided by various subjects with final numbers highlighted in yellow and associated paperwork clipped together — all to make Elliot’s job a little easier.  I swear to you I have never taken in a shoe-box of receipts in my life – although I have filed that way in the past and then spent days and days sorting and arranging so Elliot would have something neat and orderly from which to work.  The easier it is for him to understand our paperwork, the quicker and more efficient he is with doing our taxes.  That’s my theory and I’m sticking to it.

So it’s getting close to April 15…have I heard from Elliot that the taxes are ready?  No.  I recall we signed the form that said they could go electronically but he still should have called me by now to let me know to come in and pay him.  I wait…I wait…I wait a little longer.  Finally I make a phone call to Elliot.  I get his answering machine with a bizarre voicemail message on it about his being busy.  Well duh — it’s tax time, you better be busy…busy getting OUR taxes done. 

Friday on our phone was the oddest message from Elliot.  Now our voicemail is generic – I never got around to recording a message on the landline because frankly I don’t feel like it.  Usually only telemarketers or people I don’t want to talk to anyway use that number.  But I had called Elliot from that number and left him an explicit message citing my name AND phone number and requesting he call me.  The message he left was simply ludicrous…it started with this voice identifying himself and stating that he didn’t know whose machine he was talking to…was this Mrs. Dean?  He didn’t know whose machine he was talking to?!  Did he not write it down when he went to call?!  Hello??

I went ballistic.  Who the pluperfectcrapola is Mrs. Dean?  Beats the everlovin’ crap outta me – that’s not my name.  So I called again.  And once again I got the odd voicemail message.  I left a very slowly-spoken and perfectly enunciated message stating my name and phone number and WOULD HE PLS CALL ME???!!!  Okay, I got a little snarky…just a tad…I might have mentioned the fact I couldn’t understand what the heck his problem was that he didn’t know who was calling him.  Or something to that effect.  Yikes.

Five minutes later I get a call from Elliot — he goes on and on about not knowing who he was talking to because our voicemail has a generic message on it.  Well it doesn’t take a degree in rocket science to be looking at a piece of paper he could have used to jot down the message I left and included my name and number and I explained that to him.  He said he was too busy.  Huh?    I was simply dumbfounded.  Elliot was beginning to remind me of a character on The Big Bang Theory and that was truly making me nervous.  We agreed I would come to his office on Saturday.

Saturday I walk into his office and dodge the various piles of detritus everywhere.  He hunts and searches and comes up with a pile of papers purporting to be our taxes.  I remember about the electronic filing – assuming he has already done so and discover that he will electronically file as soon as I write out his payment check.  Oh ye of little faith.  I whip out my handy dandy checkbook, write a check for an enormous amount of money and Elliot goes over to his computer.  Now I am sitting on the other side of the room at the time.  I cannot see Elliot’s computer.  He hits a few keys and shouts victoriously, “Done!”  Well, crap on a crutch he could have just reached the 175th level of Super Mario for all I know.  He claims, however, he just filed our taxes.

I don’t know….I looked over the paperwork when I got home and it looks okay, but I’m still thinking it may be time for a new accountant on account of this one is driving me batty… I have this insane urge to go back and check all his math and I so don’t want to go there…sigh.


6 thoughts on “Elliot I Love You But You’re Giving Me Such a Headache…Oy

  1. I know how frustrating that must be for you but I have a lovely picture of Elliot in my mind. He sounds a real character, I can just see you listening to his messages and wanting to scream 🙂

    There used to be an elderly gentleman in our village (passed away now sadly), I used to go to his house and do the odd job for him when his wife died and he had papers that went back to the 1920’s in his study. Elliot reminds me a little of him.

    I have put a little picture of “Touch & Turn” on my photographs page so you can see him.

    Take care my friend.

    Sending you all my very best wishes and hugs
    Heading your way right now. Hugs right back atcha sweetie!

  2. I think Elliott sound like loads of fun and a constant source of entertainment. I may just hire him myself. My accountant is boring and incredibly predictable. Who needs that crap!
    He’s done good by us…you just have to be careful walking through his office!

  3. Our HR Block lady gets our taxes done in minutes. We’ve been going to her for years now and couldn’t be happier. We take ours and the MIL’s to her, we are in and out in less than an hour even though we chatter like a couple of magpies.
    I’m gonna stick w/Elliot for awhile longer – at least he always does a good job.

  4. Hey it sounds like my house. As long as nobody moves anything then I know where it is. I need to get my taxes done. I am seriously hoping that everyone gets smart and realizes that with a “Flat Tax” then we do not have to do anymore of this filing crap. Oh life would be so much easier and April 15 would just be another day.

    I think I am going to do a daily prayer about the “Flat Tax”. Please let the nation learn more about it. I cannot remember the country in Europe that is doing it, well there are a couple of them, but this one is now going to lower the percentage of what they take out and so it is like the whole country is getting a raise. Yup, I am surely going to pray about this.

    I would say to double check what Elliot does, but maybe his computer is organized, and I guess that is the most important thing. Or he just keeps all those piles to make everyone think he is busy.

    God bless.

  5. I say the same thing every year, we have to find a new tax guy. My headache-giver of choice is named Scott. He’s only been in this new house a year so his disorganization is in its infancy but he’s working on it.

    Scott’s problem is that he doesn’t shut up. He asks a question, I begin to answer and he interrupts me with me and not always about tax stuff, it could be about his dog.

    An invariable he makes a mistake. He has a Louise who works for him and it’s usually her mistake and when I bring it to his/her attention, somehow it ends up being my fault.

    I will not file electronically. So I just take our mountain of papers and returns home and get to write out those lovely checks myself.

    My point is, I hear ya sister.
    I am truly fond of Elliot but there’s just a point you reach ya know? He’s so all over the place and if his office is that bad and he’s fidgety and nervous then I have to wonder how much care he takes with my actual taxes and OH is there gonna be a letter in the mail one day from 3 years ago that says we owe $$$ coz he screwed something up? Nothing is for certain – I know that. And he did find some extra deductions this year so we are getting a refund which is a nice surprise – but when he filed electronically – I dunno – I just wondered…did it get where it was supposed to go or did it end up in some Pakistani’s email box? I won’t know till the check arrives. sigh…

  6. I am impressed by your diligent filing system, accordion folders and such. We have a filing system. It’s called Whatever’s Handy. Actually it’s my system. My wife is fully organized. I file when company is coming and I need to hide the receipts and statements. I use a random folder in the convenient filing cabinet next to the computer. Or I run stuff through the shredder. Or I just tear it up and stuff it in the overfull waste basket.
    I save a lot of time this way. But I give it all back at tax time or when I need a birth certificate or a car title.
    I hate filing, I hate paperwork and this address seems to acquire more than its share of junk mail which continues to pile up on the kitchen counter, the kitchen table, the buffet, until I go insane and shred everything or throw out the junk. Ack. I learned a new household bill filing system from my new friend julie (on my blogroll as Clutter Crusader Chronicles) and that is helping tremendously on keeping the clutter at bay. I even have a new section in my Household Bill Book for Taxable receipts so next year when I get ready to visit the illustrious Elliot, my receipt gathering will take no time at all. 🙂

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