The little bit we can talk about

A few months ago I mentioned that Jon and I were meeting with a lawyer about what we should do with the severed head we’d stored in our trunk. He said he legally couldn’t tell us what to do with it, but that whatever we decided would be fine, it’s his job to keep our secret. Dude is worth EVERY PENNY.

We met with our lawyer for several reasons, disposal of dead bodies one among many. If there’s one thing we’ve learned throughout this process it’s that things involving the legal system take time, are still taking time. There are still things I can’t talk about yet, but I can point out that Jon and I have formed a company, Armstrong Media, LLC, which is now featured along with the copyright notice at the bottom of this page. We did this for complicated reasons, but the only one that made any sense to me was that forming this company would prevent the IRS from breaking into our house and forcibly removing limbs of my body.

By doing this we can have taxes and Social Security and Medicare taken out on a regular basis instead of at one time in one very hurtful and potentially deadly lump sum. This is a mechanism to counteract our fondness for procrastination which reared its ugly head yesterday as we sat in our accountant’s office going over last year’s income and the taxes now due. You mean I owe how much? And I have how long until I have to pay it? When they come to cut off my leg please tell them to wrap the wound in a bandage because our insurance won’t cover that type of injury. Or any injury whatsoever.

Our accountant is a lovely man who keeps referring to me as Laura Armstrong. He would catch himself and apologize, but there was no need because I’m used to that by now. I’ve been called Melissa and Sarah and Hannah my whole life, and there is no reasonable explanation for this. Last week I was checking my referrer logs when I found a guy who had written a huge post about how he had found this site and why he liked my posts about Mormonism, and he called me Sarah B. Armstrong at least five separate times. “To find out more about her,” he said, “click on the picture at the top of the page where it says, ‘My name is Sarah B. Armstrong. This is my website.’” Frankly, one of my very favorite writers on the Internet is Sarah B., so in my own little fucked-up dream world I get to be her for at least one whole blog post.

After meeting with the accountant we headed to the bank where we opened a business account with the help of a lovely woman who turned out to be the mother of a two-year-old. Except her two-year-old appears to be a Magazine Cover Baby, one that remains in a permanent state of bliss, so when she asked me if I’d tell her my website address I had severe reservations. Our baby is the one you see on the inside of the magazine in an editorial called “50 Reasons You Shouldn’t Have Any More Children,” so I didn’t know if she’d be appalled by the fact that on various occasions I have threatened to donate the kid to charity. Tax write-off!

Interestingly, toward the end of the 1,000 line account application form we had to answer a litany of questions about the nature of our business as required by the Patriot Act. Really weird questions, like is any Senior Principal of our company the leader of a foreign political party? And, will we be accepting payments shipped from outside the country? Like on a boat? And will we be issuing stored-value gift cards? Huh? The questions went on and on, and finally I threw up my hands and said I DON’T KNOW, BUT I DID LEAVE MY BAGGAGE UNATTENDED.

I did ask what the problem was with stored-value gift cards. How exactly does that represent terrorist activity? Because if it does every member of my family should be arrested on my birthday. Jon pointed out that gift cards make it easy to buy things without a paper trail, and that would make sense if you could use gift cards to buy ammunition. I imagine Billy Joe opening presents on Christmas morning: “WANDA LOUISE! You done got me a gift card to the gun store!” Which makes me wonder, can you buy bullets with your $25 gift certificate at Wal-Mart? And if you can do you have any idea how awesome it is to be American?

  • http://audreyii.livejournal.com CarrieICL

    I’ll bet $20 that you’re writing a book.

  • http://Jason Jason

    Can you please create a paypal button where I can click to purchase “weapons of mass destruction”? Or if you like, a giftcard will be just as good.

  • Sheila

    So will Chuck be copyrighted now?

  • http://www.digitalpretzel.com fred

    it’s not half as bad as the questions you get to answer when you donate blood.

    “have you ever had sexual relations with a philipino in mexico city before the year 1952, or had sexual relations with someone who had sexual relations with a philipino in mexico city before the year 1952?”

    ….Dude.. I am only 25.

    “please answer the question with a simple yes or no,”

    ..no

  • Samantha

    When you are Queen of the World can you make every Thursday Tequila and Tiara day? Seriously, Congrats!

  • Lolajb

    Good God, you’re funny!

  • http://suburbanmisfit.blogspot.com Candace

    First, my daughter loved the Chuck video so much that we had to watch it over and over and over. But it’s fine, really, because it *is* awfully funny.

    Second, you mean now I have to start worrying about my addiction to buying gift cards for everyone I know? Crap. First I have to censor myself while talking on the phone (no more idle death threats involving certain members of the current administration) and now this? What *is* this country coming to?

  • http://www.biggestapple.net BigA

    So does this mean your new business is like being a ‘Cleaner’ like ‘The Wolf’ in Pulp Fiction – cause that’s the vibe I’m getting.

  • http://thefathousewife.blogspot.com/ Strizz

    I like guns that come in neon colors and have pump action with a backpack water tank. You can get those at Walmart.

  • Moyet

    I was kind of bummed when I had my son because I had to take the body out of my trunk so the stroller would fit. I still have all my ammunition gift cards, though. ;)

    Don’t worry about the woman with the perfect 2 year old. Compared to my son (32 months) Leta sounds like a perfect angel. When I read about her adventures, I long for a child like that. It can always be worse.

  • http://herablehands.com Kelly Ferry

    I knew you were a terrorist, but I had no idea you wanted to take over the world too!

    (maybe you guys can make it a better place…)

    Congratulations on the next big step.

  • Mack’sMom

    I agree with ANGELA…I stop back through out the day hoping you have a new post! When there’s something new it’s like my birthday….shh, don’t tell anyone I’m that easy to please!!

  • Susie

    Congratulations, and sorry about the 2005 taxes. That happened to me the first year I worked completely freelance, and I nearly had a panic attack. We did the same thing (formed an LLC), and things have been MUCH better since.

    BTW, isn’t the thumbsucking thing way too cute? My son did it too, and while I’m glad he quit before elementary school, I still kind of miss that Linus look.

    Anyway, you really have earned your success, Sarah. Enjoy it!

  • Angela

    Congrats on becoming The Man.

    I love it that you are posting more. Each time I refresh and see a new post, it is like Christmas morning.

    That sounds pretty cheesey, but it is the truth. :-)

  • http://www.sliverssnippets.blogspot.com JayAre

    Congrats on being a corporation! I long to be incorporated… just into anything…

    Actually, if my husband and I were a company, he’d probably fire me for gossiping to the pets about him.

  • http://www.martinbreton.com BREM experience

    Hmmm

    Patriot Act eh? Sounds more like Privacy Invasion Act.

    Why didn’t you just lie? And give wrong answers, just to see what happens?

    hehehe I know… I’m too funny.

    So. How did you whack the guy in you trunk? We want juicy details. Gore. More.

  • Tanya

    I didn’t even think of bullets. I was thinking about that nitrogen fertilizer stuff that they used to blow up the federal building in Oklahoma. (Because I have two half-used Home Depot gift cards in my purse. Which I’m not going to spend on fertilizer. Sirs.)

  • http://www.vegasandvenice.com vegasandvenice

    Well, congratulations on the formation of your new corporation!!!

  • http://nowseriously.blogspot.com LeafGirl77

    I saw the Armstrong Media, LLC thing there this morning when I dropped by. I wondered “How long has that been there”. I honestly had no idea. Glad to see it’s a new thing, and I haven’t been out of the loop!

    I’m intrigued by the rest of the story that remains untold.

  • http://www.electricboogaloo.net electricboogaloo

    Congratulations! You’re like all official and fancy and shit.

    After doing some contract work for a software company last summer, I had to fill out an impressive amount of paper work – more than 30 pages worth of detailed documentation – in order to register myself as a Contractor Who is Not a Terrorist. The client wouldn’t pay me until I signed all these forms and answered all of these questions. But **nowhere** on any of the forms did it ask me “Are you a terrorist?” or even “Do you know any terrorists?” or “Could you maybe tell us where some terrorists might be?”

    or “Because if you could? That would be very helpful.”

  • http://stillbaking.blogspot.com suze

    congratulations!

  • Mack’sMom

    The Patriot Act was written by the Bush Administration, therefore a child could find away around it! If you were smart enough to run a international terriost plot, would you be dumb enough answer those questions truthfully!?! Hello, RED FLAG?

    Gee, I done think uncle Ned is up to no good…he done gave me 500 gift cards to the Walgreens!

    Plah-ese!!

    Congrats on the LLC…you’ll be around forever!! Yea!!

  • http://sandrascanadablog.blogspot.com Sandra

    Congratulations on making it legal! However, despite my raving jealously at your popularity *grin*, a tiny part of me is glad that I only get 30 hits a day. Especially if I’d have to ‘fess up on the gift cards!

  • http://plazajen.blogspot.com Jennifer in Kansas City

    We need a good second definition for “LLC”. “Leta Loves Chuck” ??

  • Joana

    Last night, after watching Chuck and his carton, I noticed the Armstrong Media, LLC at the bottom of the page and wondered if it had anything to do with you going to see a lawyer (apart from the severed head, obviously) and I was right! (Man, why can’t I get the lottery numbers right?)
    I wish you all the (business) luck in the world, hope you get better insurance coverage (read all about it at Blurbomat) and do great, great things!
    You’re brilliant!
    *

  • http://sarahandthegoonsquad.blogspot.com/ Sarah

    I am a Sarah, and people call me Heather and Rachel. Maybe there is something to this.

    Actually, I am a Sarah B. and I thought for one brief moment, you might have been talking about me.

    Yes, I know I’m dilusional, but I found out years later the “I love Sarah B.” that was spray painted near my junior high was me, so you never know…

  • http://mothergoosemouse.blogspot.com mothergoosemouse

    I’m feeling that severed-limb-kind-of-pain too, as I am faced with a tax bill that looks like I have a kid in college instead of two in pre-school. Actually, come to think of it, those figures are probably comparable…

    There is a store in a strip mall here called Guns and Ammo. I plan to post a photo as part of my upcoming “we’ve been out west for a year now and here’s how well I’ve acclimated” montage. I wonder if they sell gift cards?

  • http://www.geokaz.com geokaz

    We too are going through tax payment panic at my house. Note to self: do not claim any of your children as dependents on your W-2, even if they are. Because when you make less than twenty thousand dollars a year after taxes, the only one who is dependent (and possibly certifiably insane for bothering to work and not just scamming welfare like all the polygamist do) is you.

    Congrats on your company. Are you hiring? Don’t worry, Apparently, according to the IRS, I’m cheap labor.

  • http://www.kevindustries.com Kevin Worthington

    Congrats Sarah!

  • http://sadandbeautiful.typepad.com Sarah

    Congratulations! My husband and I have our own business, and I think we will have to go the incorporated route as well once we find out what our taxes are.
    Opening a business account (and everything else we do) has been further complicated due to the fact that my husband is a foreigner from that oh-so-scary country the United Kingdom. We still don’t know when his status will be ‘adjusted’ to ‘permanent resident’ (the process takes forever), but in the meantime he can’t get an SS# which means he can’t get a US driver’s license and he can’t be added properly to our account. I can’t even get a second credit card–connected to the account I’ve had for years–with his name on it.

    Can’t wait to see what else you two create in the coming year. ;-)

    And damn if I get annoyed everytime that Sarah B. is mentioned since MY name is also Sarah B. LOL.
    I’m not ashamed to admit that my heart skipped a beat when I saw those letters in your post.

  • Monyikka

    Congrats to the Armstrongs All :-)

    As a newly wed I can tell you first hand people LOVE giving gift cards– too bad Target & Pottery Barn don’t sell ammmo!

    I knew we should’ve registered at Wal-Mart!

    Been loving the site forever now, thanks for the laughter!

  • http://sadandbeautiful.typepad.com Sarah

    Congratulations! My husband and I have our own business, and I think we will have to go the incorporated route as well once we find out what our taxes are.
    Opening a business account (and everything else we do) has been further complicated due to the fact that my husband is a foreigner from that oh-so-scary country the United Kingdom. We still don’t know when his status will be ‘adjusted’ to ‘permanent resident’ (the process takes forever), but in the meantime he can’t get an SS# which means he can’t get a US driver’s license and he can’t be added properly to our account. I can’t even get a second credit card–connected to the account I’ve had for years–with his name on it.

    Can’t wait to see what else you two create in the coming year. ;-)

    And damn if I don’t get annoyed everytime that Sarah B. is mentioned since MY name is also Sarah B. LOL.
    I’m not ashamed to admit that my heart skipped a beat when I saw those letters in your post.

  • http://www.theniffer.blogspot.com the niffer

    Will you ever tell us who the severed head belongs to and why it had to be severed?

  • http://blogs.salon.com/0004595 Meg

    I think this is brilliant planning and the next logical step. I wish you all the luck in the world with it — I really think we’re going to see big things from both of you. Bigger even than 8,945 comments on a single post!

  • http://www.iprettymuchhateeverything.com Torrie

    You Armstrongs are getting closer and closer to WORLD DOMINATION!

  • http://www.simzgirl.com/ simzgirl

    Congrats on becoming an LLC. Very cool!

  • sistieugler

    congrats on incorporating yourselves… did it hurt?

    as for the lady with the “perfect” 2 year old. fear her. because there is no such thing as a “perfect” 2 year old (my youngest son became a “terrible two” at 10 months… and, at 22, he’s yet to grow out of it!) seriously, people like that give drugs to their children. or alcohol. maybe both.

    also, in lieu of your own limbs, i say toss the IRS that severed head in your trunk… then blame them for keeping you from getting “ahead”. (sorry)

  • http://www.snickrsnack.com Snickrsnack Katie

    Terrorism scares me as much as it does anyone else, especially after hearing those tapes this morning on the news of the hijacker on the plane that crashed in PA on 9/11. But to start harrassing people about their gift cards? That is a tad insane. Gift cards are the present of choice in my family! I can imagine how scary it must have been answering all those questions!

    Way to go with forming your own limited liability corporation! You are so moving on up! Congrats!

  • http://thewuggychronicles.blogspot.com Elenalyn

    Full disclosure of all gift cards imperative for national security.

    Bodies in the trunk?

    Don’t ask, don’t tell.

  • Urs

    the patriot act sucks.

  • http://stridey.blogspot.com Charles Hawtrey

    Good call on starting the company. I know a lot of people who have ended up in serious financial woes for neglecting to take this step.

  • http://CartwheelsAtMidnight.blogspot.com CartwheelsAtMidnight

    Hey! Look at you goin’ all fancy on us with an LLC after your name. Cheers!

  • http://www.blissfulreminders.blogspot.com katbliss

    Cool, but the big question is who gets to be president of Armstrong Media? My husband and I just incorporated as well. (He’s president) I get a real paycheck and yell with delight everytime I get one. The company also pays to have my house cleaned, because, you know, the OFFICE needs to be cleaned! Best of luck.

  • RzDrms

    CONGRATS! Love ya’ll. :)

  • Carli

    Yep, we pay annually, too and the hit that we take around this time of the year makes my physically ill just to think about. I love write off’s though! Need a new digital camera, scanner, printer, ink, pretty paper clips? Sure, the business can buy them? Write off a portion of the house, heat, electricity, babysitting costs! Yippee! So it’s not all bad, I guess. Best of luck on the new venture, and keep in mind even on Leta’s worst days, that at least you and Jon are both in this together and can see her all day every day, which is what most parents would kill for. Now, about the body in the trunk….

  • http://www.justsayjes.com jes

    writing a book?

    hosting a talk show?

    leta’s now modeling?

    someone’s changing their sex?

    really, the possibilities are endless. please contact said attorney and tell him (or her) to get his (or her) butt in gear. WE MUST KNOW.

  • Gretchie

    The other day I said Chuck has “The Life” because he’s generally left in peace to practice his Opus Dei rituals, and is occasionally rewarded with an almost empty ice cream carton on the face. Let me just say here… you guys are Chucks of the Human Race. I am so inspired to create my own blog empire and leave my day job behind O I can spend my days at home reading blogs and preparing my own, and travelling to Amsterdam on some else’s dime… FOR A LIVING. My dears, you have Arrived….

    As a dept. of homeland sec employee, yeah.. the Patriot Act. God help us.

  • nathanv

    hey long time reader first time commenting.

    i don’t think the giftcards alone indicate you are a terrorist.
    i’m guessing that gift cards in combination with other factors throw up flags to what ever poor slob has to wade through all that data. i’m with your husband in that it could be a way to ‘give’ money to what appears to be a legitimate business in the eyes of the US which could then be funneled out of the country to naughty people.

    FWIW, i’ve been reading you blog for quite a while and as a father of three can identify with just about everything you go through. i applaud your love of leta. there are some days when i have to go into all my boys (yes 3!) and look at them while they sleep the sleep of innocence to remind myself why my wife and i got into this to begin with.

    it is worth everything to have children.

  • mirenis

    Congratulations! I know I’m off topic, but I can’t hold it in any longer. Dude, Chuck’s collar is on upside down! How can you do that to him? You know all the other dog’s are laughing at him! Poor, poor Chuckles.

  • http://www.jeremyland.net LT

    Nia G, you forgot the most important one:

    “Do you know where you’re going today?”