Taxes, Hispanic Heritage Month, Halloween

Bride from Paplanta, 1944 painting by María Izquierdo. Woman in white dress and veil

So everybody’s mad at me because I didn’t write a post—many posts—for Hispanic Heritage Month, September 15 to October 15 (and a post for Halloween, as long as I’m at it). Didn’t I want to celebrate the contributions of the country’s 60 million Hispanic Americans, Latinos, Latinas, and Latinx-identifying people? 

Why, certainly I do. But did anyone hear me say that month was full of other important dates, like Submit-Your-Estimated-Taxes Day on September 15 and Last-Really-Last-Day-to-Submit-Your-Last-Year’s-Taxes Day on October 15 (okay, October 17 this year)? Of course they didn’t, because nobody in this house thinks about taxes at all. That’s my job, right? And because nobody in this house or this town or my family and probably the whole country thinks about taxes unless they’re getting a refund—good luck with that!—they wait until absolutely the last minute to file. We had people knocking on our door on October 17 with pickle jars and Amazon boxes full of receipts. 

We tried to help them, if they needed a simple, basic return that my assistants could handle. (Darryl the intern and, just for the month, Johnny and JD. It’s not like I haven’t helped out in the cat clinic or with JD’s law stuff.) Meanwhile, Chantal and I tried to unravel all the complex returns for businesses and people who have more money than sense. They didn’t give us much more notice.

But thoughtful, well-researched articles on my culture? Well, forget that. Okay, here’s one thing: my favorite Mexican artist. Ha! Not Frida Kahlo. Of course I love her work, but Mexico has had more than one artist, you know–like María Izquierdo. I dressed as one of her paintings for my Halloween costume in sophomore year. We gave a huge party at Casa Cortez, and our artist roommates turned the inside of the house into another one of her paintings, “The Idyll.” It was great.

I was María Izquierdo again this year. Simple: white dress, red shawl, rosewood beads, flower tiara. Then I get to lecture people all night when they ask “Are you supposed to be Frida Kahlo?” You think they’d learn.


closeup of young Latina woman, Dianne Cortez of Black Orchid Enterprises
CPA, CFE, president of Black Orchid Enterprises