Did you ever have this thing happen where you look at your watch and realize you have a little extra time so you decide, “Hey, I’m going to run and drop off my dry cleaning.”
But on the way over you run into this giant construction project and you have to wait for an earth-mover and finally you get going again and you decide to try this other way that will probably be easier. Except then you get behind a school bus that stops every 25 feet to drop off some more kids. Then you finally get to the dry cleaners but the two short term parking spots out front are taken so you have to drive around the block to find a spot. Then you have to dig around in the bottom of your purse for some change.
Then you finally get into the dry cleaners and Sister Beatrice Mabel Elizabeth is there, dropping off 30 wimples and she needs a separate receipt for each of the sisters. And by now you’re all lathered up because, what the hell? You were just running out to do one simple errand.
But then the opposite of this is when you get a letter from the IRS and for some reason the IRS thinks you owe 10 years of back taxes on an alligator farm in Gainesville, Florida when in real life you owe no taxes, you own no farm, no alligators and you’ve never been to Gainesville, Florida. You spend several days losing sleep and unable to keep food down while googling “Help, IRS.” You ask the question on reddit and then spend hours going through screen after screen of responses that are some iteration of: you’re screwed. You finally start collecting everything you think of that might prove your case and ask around about tax lawyers.
But then, just for kicks you phone the IRS on the off chance there is a painless way to solve this and after three minutes on hold, the person you talk to says, “Clerical error. Your account is fine. Have a nice day.” Then you wonder why you didn’t just do that first.
I had not one but TWO alligator farms today. Everything worked out fine.
Moral of the story: if you find yourself in an alligator farm situation, don’t be afraid to try the easiest thing first. And be super polite.