Thursday, January 22, 2009

Nevermore...





I caught sight of an actual RAVEN on the way in to work this morning...it was strutting about in a parking lot, taking jabs at some frozen lump of Nameless Gurry or other. I thought I had heard a raven the other day -- it may have been the same one. I don't remember seeing them hereabouts in the winter before...maybe an effect of climate change?

We have lots of other Corvidae: magpies all year 'round, and crows in summer; more remotely, blue jays, of course. We also have several breeding colonies of leukanistic magpies...which I've never found mentioned in any of the standard bird books -- have you? They're pale -- not albino -- but all the parts that are black on a regular magpie are pale bluish-grey. Very handsome and unusual.

Feeling a wee bit jaded after a very late night sifting through accumulated piles of PAPER back at Tether's End. The Rambler got a letter from Her Majesty last week, saying, in short, "whisky tango foxtrot, Rambler, we have not received an income-tax return from you for 2007, and We Are Not Amused."

So I spent a long evening excavating for the utility bills of the last two years, which are a factor in what I can claim for housing allowance in lieu of a rectory. (For non-Anglicans, Rectors live in the Rectory; Incumbents live in the Incumbrance.)

"The way of the slothful -- also the disorganized -- is as an hedge of thorns," but by the grace of God, ALL the pertinent forms were found, and that means, oh HUZZA, that the Rambler now has a running start on her tax-return for 2008 as well.

Also trying to write the Annual Report, as fodder for the Annual General Meeting in a couple of weeks. A loathsome task, aggravated by the fear of omitting some worthy volunteer from the long,long list of those-for-whom-we-are-thankful.

9 comments:

mompriest said...

I once bewailed to my accountant that I could not pay my taxes, wanted to delay filing them for as long as possible and that I feared going to jail...he said, you don't go to jail for not paying you only go for not filing...so...good thing you don't live south of the border.... :-)

Crimson Rambler said...

that's terrible! truly! usually there is no fuss, if you don't OWE anything, if you file within the year. But I let it go past the end of December...however, OFF to the accountant next week with my little bundle.

Auntie Knickers said...

Good thing you weren't up for a Cabinet appointment, too!
My husband has read a couple of books by Bernd Heimrich who writes about ravens and lives in Western Maine. He kept them around all year but he was feeding them.
And I didn't know people other than Maine-iacs knew the very useful word "gurry"!

Peter said...

I have heard ravens regularly across the city in the past few months and share your surprise that these erstwhile denizens of more remote, forested and/or mountainous terrain have chosen an urban lifestyle. I must say, though, that blue jays are a frequent visitor to my front yard, which is to say westward of the giant transportation construction zone next to Expanding Mall. They greatly favour the mature blue spruce which sucks all the moisture out of my south-facing front lawn.

Kathryn said...

You will doubtless be completely stunned to learn that I too am incapable of keeping track of those things necessary to salvation in terms of the Tax Man - but, thanks be to God, I have now yielded to a truly wonderous organisation called Tax Management for Clergy, who don't tell me off when I can't find the vital bit of paper, who never storm out of the room muttering things about women in general and wives in particular, and who have thus far so arranged things that I have had nowt to pay. I wonder if they operate in Canada....
Congrats, anyway. It's DONE for now :-)

Singing Owl said...

I'm struggling through annual report too...bleech!

SpookyRach said...

Sounds like tons of fun!

I'm sort of jealous of your Actual Raven. We're constantly beset with grackles - a la Alfred Hitchcock. But no ravens.

Uh, I am even less Episcopal than the rest - what's an Incumbent?

Crimson Rambler said...

Hi all...to clarify, an Incumbent is the clergyperson appointed to be in charge of the parish. In some places parishes over a certain age, i.e. established before a given cut-off date, have "Rectors"...parishes of less seniority have "Incumbents". In England the distinction between "Rector" and "Vicar" used to mark the distinction between those who enjoyed impropriated tithes and those who simply received a fraction of tithes impropriated to someone else, often a lay patron with the right of appointment, or a clergyperson holding more than one parish and "farming out" the less attractive ones to juniors.

Auntie Knickers said...

"Impropriated" is a new word for me, although I suppose if one can expropriate, one could also impropriate. Begins to be a bit of a tonguetwister!