Friday, March 29, 2013

Minimum Wage, Maximum Concerns

Remember back  when mobile phones were roughly the size of a rugby ball and having one installed in your car carried a price tag of roughly $2,000,not to mention the status that accompanied it?

It’s sort of ironic now that having a land line is viewed as more of a luxury item than even the most sophisticated smartphone, but think about how many other goods and services have come as far down in price over the past decade as those rooted in technology?

Not many.

Phones, tablets, printers/scanners, flat-screen TVs… I could go on ad nauseum.

Which brings me to our discussion de jour ­- the proposed hike in the minimum wage? 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Rip Tennis Balls Asunder!

Every so often if a person is lucky, someone or something comes along that influences their lives and hopefully, for the better and for the long term.

For many of you it might have been a teacher or a parent that recognized your ability with numbers and urged you to pursue accounting or a career in finance. I certainly had my share of inspirational instructors and mentors along the way. Although with my suspect command of math, it was reasonable to assume I would not become a CPA or physicist.   

Friday, March 22, 2013

Cruise Control

As we here in the Northeast were greeted with the arrival of spring with anywhere from freezing temperatures to nearly 16 inches of snow, I, like I’m sure many of you, turned my thoughts to the warmer climes of post-tax season.

Ah, but where to spend that refund, if you’re fortunate enough to get one.

In my family, any and all federal and state proceeds have long since been earmarked for the summer vacation fund by my spouse and children. This year, we’ve entertained (or more accurately, I’ve been told) that the choices are between Napa Valley and a cruise.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Social Studies

Last week, I regaled you with our undertakings with regard to the grinding routine of college applications and the almost daily anticipation of the mail delivery in hopes of an admission acceptance.

Just to update you, over the weekend, we packed up the Honda Pilot and headed to New York’s large metropolitan cousin to the North (hint: it’s known to serve a lobster roll or two and fields baseball, hockey  and football teams that I decidedly do not root for)  to visit one of that city’s hallowed institutions of higher learning.

But in between the requisite tour of the campus and the slight fainting spell that overcame me when I peeked at the annual tuition costs, I fully realized the power and reach of social media. I realize it’s a total non-sequitur, but bear with me.

Friday, March 15, 2013

I’ll Take Pie, Over Pi Any Day

In the spirit of full disclosure, I will reveal that math was never my stellar undertaking.

Whether it was geometry, trigonometry or any other “metry” that applied, I usually escaped class with an average more befitting a score recorded by Tiger Woods, as opposed to something I would want permanently etched on my educational transcript.

And while I was a passable athlete, I realized the futility, not to mention absurdity, of attempting to become a “mathlete.” I could add and subtract change reasonably well, but when it came to proving theorems or quadratic equations, let’s just say I had a better chance of dunking over LeBron James.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Higher Debt-ucation

Like me, most people have a pre-conceived notion in their mind of what retirement will look like.

For some, it may be an oceanfront condo with close proximity to a number of challenging golf links. For others, it may be more bucolic, perhaps a large tract of land in America’s heartland or in a remote wooded area.

For a career pessimist like yours truly, I see my retirement as thus: my children returning to home base as long-term boarders after running up astronomical college tuition debt and me working the graveyard shift as a greeter at Wal-Mart.

Friday, March 8, 2013

It Was In the Cards

I’m happy to announce next week will mark my one-year anniversary with Transition Advisors.

It’s been a whirlwind 365 days that passed far more quickly than I’d like a year to go at my advanced age. I began this exciting phase of my life’s next chapter  coming aboard  just as tax season was rounding third base and then went full bore into the wildly busy conference and travel schedule as well as the frenetic exercises of scheduling buyer-seller meetings or consulting engagements.

And I’m hoping for an equally exciting 2013 and right out of the gate it certainly gives the impression that it will be on an equal, if not greater pace.

But I digress.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Chicken Soup for the Tax Preparer

The good news is that it’s just about six weeks before another tax season comes to an end.

The bad news is that it’s still six weeks (and weekends) away.

So the last thing you probably want to be reading while gasping for air amidst a landfill of 1040s is some serious missive from yours truly about succession planning and why you should begin thinking about it sooner rather than later. That would probably be met with a string of four letter words in reply and understandably so.

So how about some comedy at the expense of others?

Much like a steaming bowl of chicken soup when you’re under the weather, it couldn’t hurt. 

Friday, March 1, 2013

Writing off Blame

Having been affiliated with the accounting profession for the past dozen years and in my former life as a sports correspondent, you can imagine I’ve heard some incredulous tales of athletes and celebrities earning obscene amounts of money and just a few short years later, find themselves penniless and in arrears to the IRS for millions.

Space and time prevent me from compiling even a short list – okay, boxer Mike Tyson who made $425 million in earnings over his 15-year career, wound up $30 million in debt. How about former NBA star Latrell Sprewell who was all set to sail aboard his yacht, until it was repossessed with him standing at the dock. That takes embarrassing to a new standard, especially if he was wearing a captain’s hat.

And I could go on. And on.