Many years ago I toiled as a staff accountant at a local CPA firm in Rolling Hills, CA. The senior partner, whose name was Marty, was known to occasionally go out of his way to aggravate the office staff purely for entertainment. Example: many of the staff struggled to keep their weight under control. Marty had his own issues there, but having conquered them via draconian dieting, you would think that he would be sympathetic to those who still fought the “battle of the bulge”. Not so, and at least twice weekly we would arrive to the office and be greeted by a huge spread of cheese danishes, donuts & pastries from a local bakery, none of which Marty would partake of. He simply wanted to tempt those who should not have been eating that stuff and who by 2 or 3pm would inevitably give in.

Well, every April 1st Marty would hang a long purple banner on the railing outside the office that simply said TIME IS RUNNING OUT. It served as a reminder to those clients who came in to our office that April 15th was upon us, but mostly was a stress inducer to overworked staff accountants already putting in 70 hour weeks and not getting all of our work done. Although he never once said a word about it, the visible message was clear.

The April 15 tax filing date is once again only a couple days away, and I sometimes wish I had a similar banner to hang here to admonish our clients to get their data to us sooner, and for our people to work harder.

Then I remember how I felt about Marty and all those pastries …