Thursday, April 14, 2005

The Lord Giveth

... And the tax man taketh away.

Actually we came out a couple grand ahead this year so we can't complain. Didn't bother to file til today though, out of sheer laziness. So I had to go to the store and get stamps (also something I didn't do earlier for no good reason) and then drive all the way to Portland to put the various forms (state and county, we e-filed the feds) into the mail at the main post office since I don't know where there is one here and didn't feel like driving around looking for it in the dark. Since we didn't get it done til after Survivor was over.

That Multnomah County tax really pisses me off though. At least we won't have to pay it next year since we don't live there anymore. Like federal and state taxes aren't enough already... Imagine funding your schools through extra taxes on top of the levies and crap they are constantly shoving through the ballot measures, rather than having a stable, adequate funding stream that does not waver and flicker according to the whims of the few voters who bother to show up... not to mention using lottery profits... how's that for ethical? Maybe there's some tobacco money involved too! And why not use some of the taxes they collect from alcohol! "Drink more booze! Class sizes are getting too big again! One more shot! Come on, do it for the kids! "

Okay, enough of that silliness. Just glad to be out of that particular crazy system. I'm sure there are plenty of idiosyncracies to be had right here in Vancouver. But not in relation to school funding. So I'm told.

Delia spent this evening attending her first t-ball game with us. Almost-5-year-old nephew Tommy's team, the Marlins, was playing their first game of the season. We shot a good 15 minutes of high-quality 100 % digital footage (can you still call it footage although no actual lengths of film are used? hmm) of him out on the field dancing, wriggling, jumping up and down, and grabbing himself. Yes sir, this young man has a future in baseball, once he learns how to spit anyway. That was when he got to play first base, his favorite position. When they put him in as shortstop the next inning he sort of sashayed out there, which sadly we did not get on video, but it would have made any decent drag queen squeal in envy. Other children spent their field time digging in the dirt and wandering around aimlessly or, occasionally, paying actual attention to the game. The game was four innings long and must have lasted four hours from the way things were going by the time we left. We had to go because Delia hadn't had dinner and was getting squirmy, but frankly I'd seen about all the 5-year-old baseball I needed to see of an evening, and then some. Not that it wasn't fun and I'll certainly do it again, because Tommy's a great little guy and it means a lot to him, but I don't know that I'll necessarily attend all the games or stay the whole time every time. We can always blame Delia...

After we got home and had dinner, Delia spent the remainder of her evening doing something I've seen her doing more the last couple of days, which is sitting by the doll cradle she got for Christmas and removing the doll and stuffed bears from it. Then she puts them back in. Then takes them out again. All the while huffing and puffing with monkey lips and/or babbling a variety of sounds. It's pretty hilarious. She's even figuring out that you can use a blanket to cover up the doll/bears. The doll is a soft doll with vinyl face, sort of a "baby's first dolly" kind of thing, and she enjoys picking it up by its butt (where the tag is, you see) and waving it around because it jingles (very exciting) or else trying to scratch its screen-printed eyes off with her fingernail. But then! (and this is very exciting! by parental standards, anyway) she appeared to hug the doll this evening! She only just started to hug us in the past month or so and even then it's only if she's tired or just woke up. But each day it seems she does it a little more and appears to enjoy it for its own sake and not just for comfort when she's fragile. Actual affection! Whoa!

She's so close to walking. Her balance is improving day by day and she sometimes stands up from all fours without touching anything around her -- she has taken a step or two toward something (usually a dog) but I wouldn't really call it walking. Soon, though... very soon...

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