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Tuesday, 8 April - link


One week left to submit my taxes. For a while last year I was pretty good about firing up Quicken 2001 every few weeks to index and file all my expenses. I charge just about everything I can on my credit card so the name of the business and the amount of my transactions are logged for later reference. As a self-employed freelance something-or-other I handle all my own business expenses so I like to be able to index these things.

At first indexing all my expenditures appealed to the data-geek in me. I could to comparative reports of media spending for summer versus winter months. Track my net worth down. Stuff like that.

But then I graduated from college and started doing my own taxes. For the last few years I've been using Turbo Tax through the web (because I got free access through my financial institutions - no longer! Humph - they've made an addict of me). I log on, online, answer questions, refer to my Quicken data, and after a few days, I file - click - boom - online! It's relatively painless I think, at least compared to the taxes I remember seeing people file on television, with tables full of receipts and things.

Here, my expense tracking is all electronic. But it's not completely headache free - there are weeks where I didn't index my expenses, or expenses I don't understand. For example: 21 May, 2002: "RED BANANA" for $81.25. I was in Los Angeles then for E3, I'm guessing that's a restaurant. Maybe I can Google that. But then there's Japan - What the heck is "KABUSHIKIGAISHIYA NIHONKA" and how did I spent $194.40 there on 19 November? I was spending yen at the time. Maybe I can figure out what that's from by reading my web site, maybe from browsing my Outlook Calendar archives. Or if I really want to find out, I could try searching the web, maybe in Japanese. Maybe that will tell me what "ANRAKUTEIASAKUSAKOKUSAIDO" is, if I want to track down $18.32 from 20 April 2002.

Sigh. If only I'd forced myself to apply regular discipline to indexing expenses in Quicken shortly after they happened! Or maybe I have to save my receipts, especially in Japan, and write little notes on them. But as I've said, I'm trying to purge trash. I want to be completely electronic will all this business.

Posted on 8 April 2003 : 09:51 (TrackBack)
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Justin's Links, by Justin Hall.