More good news, the IRA withheld $1850 because the law required them to, so I’m getting $1850 back from the IRS. What that means is I’m going to get my teeth fixed finally. No more saving up, and having something come up that needs to be done more than fixing my teeth. As of now, there is nothing more important, that we need more, than fixing my teeth. I literally have two opposing molars that kinda mesh up and let me kinda-sorta chew my food and not have to depend on my super-stomach to digest my food, because every so often I eat something that needs chewing to digest. And when that happens I’m either nauseous, like severely for days, or I get the runs also severely for days, or the opposite constipated so bad I can’t go, again for days. I’m looking at putting an end to all of that with new teeth.
Watched a good race from down the pike in Austin today. To put it succinctly, it was a barn-burner. Best racing I’ve seen in months. And I have no way to describe it adequately in words. It was just that exciting.
And I’m almost done with the taxes. If the literature and web sites are to be believed Mrs. the Poet will be 99% protected in about 2 weeks, and I can relax about giving her COVID19 from some random encounter with a maskless person on the street. According to the literature I’m 80% protected with my first shot of Moderna.
I wasn’t planning on doing any 4/1 jokes, but this was too good to pass up. And FYI the cars involved wreck when they drive on the grass beside the track.
If I was going to do a 4/1 parody post I would do a tirade about cyclists not paying taxes to use the roads, which there are several examples from others linked in the pages of this blog. But partially because I linked so many of those tirades and pages debunking said tirades, I don’t feel like it.
And I’m literally falling asleep at the keyboard after doing another 36+ awake marathon so I would be awake for Mrs. the Poet’s trip to her shot, so in spite of less than 200 words I’m ending it here.
And minimum tax payments have been kicking my backside last year, but our combined incomes didn’t even break the standard deduction, so we get it all back. What really was bad was the IRA tax payment that was triggered by my turning 60 last year. Taxes were being taken out on income I hadn’t gotten, which is a major bummer and would not have been refunded if I didn’t start making at least quarterly or more frequent withdrawals.
But long story short because it’s 0330 and I finally got my words back to make a post, we got a refund of over $2K on an income of just over $15K, which even just looking at the unfairness leaps out at you. That’s a marginal rate of 13+% on a sub-poverty income. Granted we got it all back, but $2K is a lot of groceries, haircuts, and massages not gotten because I didn’t get the money during the year. In fact, doing a quick calculation, I had more taxes taken out than I got in income from the trust. By my calculations I got about $1800 in non-exempt income from the trust and the IRA, but there was right at $2100 ± a few $ taken out in taxes. That’s a tax rate of more than 50%, roughly 54%, and last I checked the top bracket was only 37%. And something’s definitely rotten in DenmarkDC when my little pittance has withholding at more than the top tax bracket.
In non-news I didn’t win the Lotto again, and I still don’t have the bits for the Sprint-T. And it looks like I will have to spend the refund on plumbing problems and a cat with a skin condition.
For some reason that video has been making the rounds on some of the forums I frequent as characters in web comics struggle with depression. Well, one character in one comic is actually singing the song, but that doesn’t explain why the same video is spreading to other forums. Maybe there are lot of people depressed by the current administration.
I have been spending a lot of time waiting to fall asleep because my feet have been cold and uncomfortable. I have a warm quilt that makes my upper body very warm, but for some reason my knees on down stays cold. This keeps me awake, and when I can’t sleep, I think. My favorite subject to think about is the bucket, and last night I was thinking about the Sprint-T. Specifically thinking about making the frame lighter and stiffer. Lighter by only making the rear hoop and diagonals out of the 0.120″ wall tubing, and everything else out of the 0.060″ wall. Stiffer by using the diagonal brace to carry the front mount for the radius rod that carries the weight of the back half of the car and triangulating the crap outta that mount in as many directions as possible. Comparing the weight of the floppy, bendy, noodly Speedway kit ladder frame (roughly 75 pounds) to the raised rail Sprint-T frame (80 pounds) that is almost completely rigid, well that’s not much weight to get stiff.
I was also thinking about using the brake reaction torque of the front axle to produce anti-dive the same way a torque arm makes anti-squat at the rear axle. The bad thing about this is it changes caster as the axle travels. That means the directional stability of the car changes and the steering feel changes, depending on how hard the brakes are grabbing. Thing is, for the normal radius rod front suspension for this type of car, this is normal driving behavior.
And 1/31 is my annual walking tour of the local tax offices, meaning I spent entirely too much time on my feet standing in line with the other last-minute taxpayers between walking to the offices. I couldn’t do this by bus because the offices are all too far from the bus stops, and the bus does not run frequently enough. I can walk to the bus stop I need to get off at before the next bus gets there. So I’m tired as heck tonight while I’m composing this post, not sleepy, but physically tired. My back hurts and my leg hurts, the one that got all the damage in the wreck.
Today is March 14 or Pi(e) day. That’s because in MM/DD format the date is 3/14 or π. I’m going to have pumpkin pie for dessert tonight after we get back from getting our taxes done. Having the trust has made getting taxes done much more complex and expensive, but on the other hand it has also made paying our property taxes easier. We just withdraw from the trust and write the checks and then I get to walk all over downtown Garland dropping off the checks at the various offices they go to.
Today was a fun (not fun) day. After making sure we had money in the bank to cover the checks I went and paid all our property taxes today. Almost $3K flushed down the government sewer. All I can say is all that BS does a wonderful job of making the grass grow. I’m mostly upset because that was a large chunk of change, not for what happened to it. As someone pointed out from before I was born, taxes buy an important thing, they buy civilization. Without taxes we have no government, without government we have no laws, no streets, no water systems, no sewers, no public education, NO CIVILIZATION! So, yeah I like paying taxes, I just don’t like paying so much in taxes.
Naturally I had to do a lot of walking as it was about a mile between all the offices and while there was a bus it only ran once an hour, so it was tons faster to walk. Inhale. After spending close to two hours doing the tax thing (including walking between offices) I grabbed a bus to get the latest issue of Unbeatable Squirrel Girl and since it was after 1500 and the next bus wasn’t until 1551, I grabbed a bite at the burger place on the corner. Inhale. Also between paying taxes and heading home I picked up some high-point check-ins on my game.
On the hot rod front I found there was an LS series engine built for transverse FWD cars, the LS4, and a special automatic transaxle to go with it. It was installed in the GM W-body cars in the early 2ks and made famous as the “You get a car!” car on Oprah. Anywho the LS4 is slightly shorter than the standard LS V8 and puts out just over 300 HP in stock, new form. Thing is that because it’s an LS engine there are tons of GM and aftermarket performance parts to pump up the power until the transmission turns to shrapnel in a few seconds/feet. Using this combination results in a power unit that weighs right at 700 pounds, or slightly lighter than the 350/350 standard for T-Buckets, by about 10 pounds. Most of that is because of the aluminum heads and block of the LS compared to the cast iron block and heads on the SBC 350, because that 4T65E transaxle weighs more than the TurboHydromatic 350 by 94 pounds. But the final car would still be even lighter than the 350/350 Bucket because like with the minivan powered bucket there is no 120 pound rear axle, or driveshaft. So maybe 1600 pounds or a touch less for the LS4/4T65E bucket, basically 100 pounds less than the SBC 350/350 bucket. And I could get the same HP out of the 3.6L DOHC V6 Mopar engine that weighs more than 100 pounds less. Less low-end torque, but that’s why the 62TE transmission has a 4.1 1st gear and the 4T65E transmission has a 2.61 1st.
And It’s time for me to go to bed now. I have a busy day coming tomorrow.