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Friday, April 16, 2004

Midnight madness

Every year at midnight on April 15 the top-of-the-hour radio news reports talk about procrastinators lining up at the Post Office hoping to get the postmark before midnight. Why is this news? Those of us who are teachers understand that procrastinating is a professional activity for most students and there should be no shock that such skills, as they are honed in the highschools and colleges of our great country, would then be used on the most crucial day of the year - as far as potential jail time goes.

Moreover, those students who practice the art of procrastination in school are typically not those who practice the art of mathematics. However, the IRS insists that millions of individuals who have not taken arithmetic in years, and may not have scored more than 65% when they did (although they passed), score a 100% on their tax return EVERY YEAR. Thus, from the point of view of the IRS, procrastinators should be targeted for audits more often than those of us who filed say last Thursday, because the chances of an audit revealing irregularities should be higher for procrastinators. Okay, that is just a first-crack theory. I have no proof that this is the case.

Procrastination should not be considered news, but it is yearly fodder for radio and television news casts. Perhaps a "this day in history" would be a better waste of time.

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