Saturday, April 12, 2014
I'm Not THAT Stupid!
The phone rang so I wandered downstairs to the kitchen to answer.
A man with an accent as thick as the hair on my winter legs asked for Kelly. I fessed up it was me. Then he goes into a broken English one sided conversation about how he was with the IRS and there was a problem with my taxes requiring my immediate attention. He asked for me to get a pen and write down my case number and name of the agent assigned to my case in Washington. I took the number down mainly because in actuality Tim and I DO have some problems with the IRS stemming from a couple of guys who made Tim the fall guy in a trucking business they all had a few years back. We're unfortunately stuck with a $28,000 payroll penalty tax we are having to pay off. Of course I didn't mention this but as the guy kept talking about how important it was I contact my caseworker, I began to question HIM!
It went something like this:
"So let me get this right. The IRS is calling me on a Saturday afternoon to let me know there is a problem with my taxes? Number one , you don't even sound American. Number two, you sound like somebody I get on the phone when I call my cable company for technical support and somebody in Indonesia answers."
The guy went on and on when finally I simply said "Yeah, right" and hung up the phone. I started worrying maybe he was legit so I called the number he had given me to contact my caseworker. A man picked up on the second ring and said "Internal Revenue Service." I immediately hung up. Crap! Were we really in MORE trouble?
Then I decided to put the phone number into the Google search bar and see what came up. There were at least five queries saying it was a hoax and that the number I had dialed was in fact a cell phone in Washington but not related to the IRS.
I started thinking about what happens when he calls old people, not too smart people or illegals worried about their immigration status.
I didn't give the guy any information, just an ear full. I know times are tough, no one knows that more than us but to scam people on a cell is pretty stinking lazy if you ask me.
Tim wasn't home at the time, he had gone to the park to walk. When he got home I told him about the call.
He said the guy had called around nine this morning and asked for me. Tim knew I was downstairs getting my Breaking Bad fix and didn't want to bother me so took the number down himself. He called the number right back and a man answered. When Tim said to the man "You sound exactly like the same guy I was talking to ten seconds ago" the man hung up on Tim.
I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed but for Pete's sake, how stupid do you think we are?
What worried me more is that obviously these guys are getting a few people's financial information out of them and possibly stealing money or they wouldn't keep doing this.
All our (unfortunate) dealings with the IRS have always been through certified mail. Actually one time they DID make a house call but after setting up an appointment via certified letter. It was nerve wracking and I let Tim talk to him in the living room while I stayed upstairs. I came downstairs to sign papers and scooted from the room as soon as my name was signed on the dotted line.
I should have known better from the jump but when you already owe the IRS you get nervous. The IRS gets our tax returns for the next seven years plus we're on a payment plan for the rest. At least the IRS has the courtesy of paying for certified mail to let you know.
I went into work feeling better knowing it was a hoax. It was pretty slow again but got lucky with a few great tables.
Tim was off today so I had Zach take me to work at four and then he took the car to his job at five. I got off around nine and caught a ride to where Zach works. I was starving so Zach asked me if I wanted something to eat before taking the car home? I told him I would love some wings so he ordered me some. I saw him at the counter with his credit card and went around to pay for them myself. I handed the waitress a twenty and said not to take Zach's card. Zach took the twenty out of the waitress's hand and made her put it on his card. He stuffed the twenty in his back pocket and thought to myself "What just happened and where did my twenty dollars just go?"
I didn't say anything then but when Zach brought me my box of wings to take home just said "Use that twenty to take a cab home tonight."
I suppose it's the thought that counts.
Zach has been good to us though, helping out with bills and can't say I don't enjoy his Netflix account tremendously.
It's getting better around here, slowly but surely. At least I know now we don't owe the IRS any MORE money. My job has been a blessing, the boys are pitching in when we need it and know God will provide Tim with a good job soon.
Ate my wings when I got home, even shared some with Tim. Now I'm going upstairs to the living room to watch Breaking Bad again...yep I'm a junkie for the show.
Talked to my girl at college for a few minutes, took the dogs out and now it's "Me" time. I've learned that "Me" time is a necessity I ignored for way too long.
As Alanis Morrisette so eloquently said "We're broke but we're happy."
Til next time...COTTON