Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Guest Post From Devin (actually stolen from his Facebook page)

You know what irks me?
The same people blasting Lt. Col. Vindman for requesting to be called by his rank, from the ranking member are the same ones who get bent out of shape about the president being called Mr. Trump.
On the flip, those who are all SJW come to Vindman's defense are calling our president horrible things, making disrespectful baby balloons, and actively mocking him when it's possible that he had a health crisis.
At this point I have so little respect for our political parties. The way politicians and loyal constituents of those parties are behaving is reprehensible.
Disrespect isn't cool, doesn't matter who is being disrespected.
Othering and dehumanizing people isn't cool, doesn't matter who it is.
Our problems extend way beyond Obama or Trump, McConnell or Pelosi...our entire society is SICK. It may have started with politicians, it may have started with us (the people), it may have started with corporate interests. FFS, it doesn't really matter how it started.
It's up to each and every one of us to demand better. To respect and listen to our fellow humans, our fellow Americans. The complex issues in today's world don't fit into a nice little partisan talking box. Echo chambers produce consensus but consensus isn't always what you want if it's consensus for self destruction.
We've got to move past the fear mongering and hatred.
Liberals... the average Christian Conservative doesn't want to legislate you into going to church, stone members of the LGBTQIA+ community, or go to war over everything.
Conservatives... the average Atheist Liberal doesn't want to outlaw Christianity and prop up Islam, make your kids transition to the opposite gender or be non-binary, or completely sell-out our country.
Yes, there are extreme people on both sides who are pushing for things that are in nobody's interest. You have wedge issues like 2nd Amendment and abortion that are purposefully hyped up and taken out of context to divide people. Meanwhile, Congress is busy throwing stuff into bills that have nothing to do with the bill... agreeing on the gerrymandering of districts that maintain the status quo and overall turning a blind eye to criminal business behavior while legislating away personal freedoms.
Your average politician does not care about you, does not care about your family, and frankly doesn't give a flying flip about our country. Your average national politician has more in common with the ultra wealthy than the average American... and if you work for the government, I can assure you they have nearly nothing in common with you.
I feel like I've been beating this drum a lot lately but it's because I care...I care about people, I care about justice, I care about our country and the ideals I'd like to believe we once stood for. I hope 20 years from now our children and grandchildren look at this period with the same eye that we now look at the era of the Vietnam war; with disgust and embarrassment. Much like we learned the importance of treating veterans with respect from Vietnam, I hope our children learn to bring respect and dignity into politics.
Y'all just be kind to one another.
It's ok to disagree and debate, we should but this unhealthy lambasting and railroading gets us nowhere productive.

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Don't Read Self Help Books...

Stop Reading Self Help Books
A Self Help Book

By Kirk Taylor
Copyright 2019

You’re still here?
Did you read the title?

Anyway…there are a million self-help books out there.
Why do we need another one?
Because this isn’t really a self-help book…

It is a self-help book…
But this one is a little bit different.

It’s not written by an expert on anything other than taxes…
But it’s written by someone who has done things and seen things and works with a LOT of people…
I see a lot of people living their lives…
Some are successful, some are just getting by…
Some are struggling…

The one common thread is that people seem to focus on the wrong things…
They worry about the wrong things…
They’re afraid of things that are never going to happen…
They miss simple things they can do to improve their lives…

This book is going to be different…

This book is going to have short, simple, easy to understand sections that give practical, actionable life advice that you can start using immediately.

Most of it is easy…
Some of it is hard…

But all of it will help you in either big or small ways…

Some of it you will have heard a thousand times…
Much of it will be new to you…
Some of it will seem like strange things to find in a self-help book…

Read the whole thing…
Be prepared for some tough advice…
Be prepared for some easy advice…
Be prepared for some foul language…
Be prepared for some aggressive rhetoric…

I was a sailor…
I don’t do subtle…

Monday, July 22, 2019

Guest Post from Devin on hate...

So....earlier today I shared several posts I saw on my timeline that WILDLY disagree with my world views.
With each of these I wrote a comment when I shared them expressing my disagreement.
Let me be clear HATE is NEVER ok, it doesn't matter if you are hating a majority group or a minority group.
There is NO MORAL SUPERIORITY in hate.
In today's world many of the sensational articles shared on Facebook are crafted by malicious actors (often nation states) with the intent of dividing Americans and weakening our unity.
I understand people don't like Trump, and with some valid reasons. I understand some people do like Trump, and with the terrible partisan BS nowadays I can understand WHY people who wouldn't usually stand by him do.
In today's world it feels like a battle for life, but the issue is the battle for life isn't between REPUBLICANs and that is the SMALL battle. The battle for life and death is between FREEDOM, LIBERTY, DECENCY and OPPRESSIVE GOVERNMENT. You're fooling yourself if you think either party gives a flying flip about you as a person; they don't.
What OPPRESSIVE GOVERNMENT fears is unity among the constituency.
What OPPRESSIVE GOVERNMENT fears is thoughtful debate.
What OPPRESSIVE GOVERNMENT fears is us realizing that we agree on 80% of the stuff that really matters and that we'll stop arguing over their "solutions" that are meant to be a distraction to us.
Quit being Sheeple, quit feeding into the mass hysteria!
Diversity is beautiful, love is beautiful, fear and hate will NEVER win against LOVE they can't. But what can happen is that fear and hate can infect us as a society, and poison us. It can cause us to stop being loving and during these periods of time fear and hate can gain massive ground.
I'm ashamed of how many "good" people I know take "sides" with Evil A and Evil B. Stand up for what's right, call right right and wrong wrong. Stand for RESPECT, DIGNITY, TRUTH, and LOVE.
You can really tell Facebook's UI (intentionally or unintentionally) is geared towards furthering the divide and spreading misinformation because in all of these circumstances it looks like I was in support of the point that I FIRMLY stand AGAINST.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

You Are WRONG - Life is GREAT!

Every single one of you who thinks this country and this world are going to shit are wrong.

Very wrong.
Insanely wrong.

Turn off the news.
Stop listening to the politicians.

The arc of world improvement is universally positive and will continue to do so DESPITE the fuckwads we keep putting in power.

 Life is great and getting better!
This is not even debatable...

A Woman's Right to Choose...

If you truly want to protect a woman's right to choose (I do, despite serious reservations about some abortions) then the best way is to take a principled stand regarding the government's authority to make choices in all areas of people's lives. Take a skeptical view of all attempts to force people to make choices based on popular beliefs.

This means that you have to examine your beliefs on prostitution, drugs, vaccination and even guns. It doesn't mean you have to change your opinion, or become a libertarian or an anarchist, but you really need to be willing to subject your beliefs to rigorous examination of whether the benefits outweigh the intrusion, especially the myriad of laws without a direct victim.

While your at it, you might want to examine how much power the state has to force you or prevent you from doing what you want. You might want to re familiarize yourself with the first ten amendments of the constitution, especially the forgotten 4th through 6th and realize that erosion of these enumerated rights makes it easier to erode every right, including the right to choose.

 A state whose power is limited and which is not allowed to make choices for its citizens except in the most extreme of cases, is a state where a woman's right to choose is truly safe.

 A woman's right to choose will NEVER be safe in a country where the majority can force its will on the minority without the citizens raising an outcry.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

A Post I Wrote for the Tax Blog on Having a Great Tax Pro

It's obviously no secret that I favor the use of tax professionals over software. With that said, having a great tax pro matters, and it costs money. This post is about a few of the things that might or might not occur to the average person that a great tax pro can provide. Some of these became especially important with the advent of the new tax law and its effect on tax return results.

Here's the list:

1. If you had a great tax pro, you wouldn't have been surprised that refunds in general were going to be down, but you also would have known that actual taxes paid would also be down. More importantly, a great tax pro would have taken your 2017 tax information and analyzed it under the new law so you would know the EXACT effects on your tax situation.

2. A great tax pro would also have anticipated, through asking great questions, what changes would occur in your life and how they would affect your tax situation. It is amazing to me how many people with okay tax pros end up surprised by simple things that are easily anticipated such as a child turning 17.

3. Expanding on the above, a great tax pro will tell you what you can do to mitigate the effects of tax law or life situation changes. Unlike tax software, a tax pro can make changes to your return, see the results and then make more changes so that you can make informed decisions about what to do.

4. A great tax pro can show you how to use the tools the IRS provides such as withholding calculators, installment agreements and many others.

5. A great tax pro knows state tax laws or where to find them. Software sucks at state taxes. There are numerous state tax deductions that you basically need to know about ahead of time to take advantage of. Software just draws numbers from the Federal with occasionally a few questions. If you use software, ask yourself how many times the state tax return magically occurs without ONE SINGLE QUESTION about state taxes.

6. If you have to file more than one state, your software is going to mess it up. An average tax pro might have difficulty with a state other than the one they work in and maybe a neighboring state. A great tax pro understands how to file multiple states intimately.

7. A great tax pro will save you a ton of time, frustration and worry. If your tax pro is really good, the time and effort you save should make every penny worth it.

8. A great tax pro can answer your questions in the off-season, BEFORE you make a mistake.

9. A great tax pro can help you understand IRS and state tax letters and (often for a fee) help you respond or (if you get their extended guarantee) handle the letters for you and/or go to audits for you. A tax pro who is an Enrolled Agent or CPA is critical for this.

10. A great tax pro will tell you about deductions you've never heard of.

11. A great tax pro can give you interesting non income tax advice you might not think of. The perfect example in South Carolina is when people are paying WAY to much real estate tax because they don't realize they need to inform the county that they are living in the home they just bought. We will also give you a redacted copy of your tax return that you need to file the paper work, and often provide a copy of the form and instructions.

12. A great tax pro can tell you some interesting military stuff, like the 6 states that give military bonus money of various types, the extended period you get to sell a rental property and avoid a lot of taxes, and how to manage tax free combat pay.

13. Really great tax pros have a bunch of worksheets, spreadsheets and calculators that you can use for tax planning or record keeping.

14. Great tax pros see a lot of life occurring and can give great advice based on what we've seen work and not work in people's lives.

15. A great tax pro will check your prior year tax returns for free and make sure you didn't miss anything.

16. A great tax pro can counsel you on the appropriate level of aggression based on the position you want to take and your tolerance for risk.

17. A great tax pro will be up on every tax law change, every IRS ruling and every court case result that affects taxes.

We cost a lot of money. We're worth it. Just make sure your tax pro is great. Okay is not okay.

Friday, May 3, 2019

February to April 2019 Charleston Restaurant Visits

Name                        Loc                    Rating   Beer Selection Rating

Azul Park 4 3
Chas Bakery + Deli Sum 4 0
Coast Brewing Park 5 5
EVO Park 5 4
Five Loaves Café Var 3 3
Husk DT 5 3
Jeni's DT 3 1
Malagon DT 5 2
Melfi's NK 5 2
Swig and Swine Var 4 3
The Ordinary DT 4 3
Wine and Company DT 5 5
Wiki Wiki Sandbar WA 4 2
Basil Var 3 2
Maui Tacos DT 3 3
Steel City Pizza NC 2 3
Sweatman's MN 5 0
The Brew Cellar Park 4 5
The Codfather Park 4 3

Here's a link to the Master Restaurant Spreadsheet

Columns are Restaurant, Location, Rating and Beer Selection Rating.

Locations: Park - Park Circle, DT - Downtown, NK - North of 17 Downtown, Var - multiple locations, MP - Mount Pleasant, MN - Middle of Nowhere (Outside Holly Hill in this case), WA - anywhere West of the Ashley, NC - North Charleston

Rating - 1 to 5 scale (5 being best (gotta be perfect to get a 5 - 4 is a perfectly great score and 3 is reliably good))

Beer rating:
1   No beer or little good beer (or a bad brewery)
2   Below Average (or a mediocre brewery)
3   Some locals and other good brews (or an OK brewery)
4   Excellent (or a good brewery)
5   Best (or a great brewery)

Azul is a casual Mexican restaurant with a great mix of classics and innovative dishes. The Molcajete is a great variety dish suitable for multiple eaters.
Charleston Bakery and Deli has great breakfasts and sandwiches with a Jewish Deli twist.
Coast Brewing is still my favorite brewery. They have not succumbed to modern brewery fads (not that those are a bad thing) but instead continue to produce their classic styles with a smattering of innovations. Hop Art IPA, Boy King DIPA, 32/50 Kolsch and Blackbeerd Imperial Stout are some of the best examples of their respective styles.
EVO is a slam dunk for pizza and an awesome local beer selection. The Pork Trifecta is the best pizza and is perfect reheated in the morning with a runny fried egg on top. Make sure to visit The Brew Cellar for an excellent tap list and brilliant selection of cans and bottles to drink on presence or take home.
Five Loaves Cafe has become a bit more "chainy" than before, but still serves good food with decent service. It is a good choice for Summerville due to somewhat limited options in the area.
Husk remains one of the best downtown restaurants, with a modern take on classic southern cuisine. Great for out of town visitors. The bar is a perfect option if you can't get in the restaurant since its menu is basically the Husk Greatest Hits menu.
Jeni's has some unique ice cream flavors, but make sure you pay attention to ensure you get dairy if you want it as it can be a little confusing.
Malagon is a grazer's delight. It's where Artisan Meat Share used to be and is a great replacement. Small plates and shareable entrees are the feature.
Melfi's has outstanding pasta and Italian food. They have parking nearby which is nice. The staff is very knowledgeable of what they are serving and why. Pasta is homemade.
Swig and Swine Summerville has reopened!!!! I really love this place, especially since it's so close to me. Not the best barbecue in the area, but extremely good.
The Ordinary still has amazing oysters and cold fish selections, along with excellent seafood options. Get reservations or arrive before it opens.
Wine and Company is still the best wine bar in Charleston with an incredibly knowledgeable staff. You can also buy bottles to go and they can help find what you want. They also have a phenomenal beer selection to go or drink on premises which most people don't know about. The beer list is very well curated. Located at Meeting and Spring, it's a great stop before or after dinner. Also great cheese and charcuterie.
Wiki Wiki Sandbar is a HUGE Polynesian restaurant with some great bars and a good selection of classic dishes mixed with some local standbys.
Basil is a reliable Thai restaurant with more options for non-Thai food fans than other places. I like the Garlic and Beef dish.
Maui Tacos does a good job of replicating the original. They are a good choice if you are bored with the cookie cutter Mexican that is way too prevalent in our town. Great beer selection. If your out of town family insists on going to Hyman's tell them you'll be at Maui Tacos waiting for them to finish being disappointed.
Steel City Pizza has a good beer selection. That's why they get a 2. You do the math...
Sweatman's has managed to maintain great barbecue standards despite the ownership change a few years ago. Still the best barbecue in the area. Visit Biedler Forest on the same day, since it is located in the same middle of nowhere. Better yet, do dinner and a Biedler Night Walk on the full moon Saturday of the month (not affiliated with each other - just a good evening plan).
The Codfather has outstanding Fish and Chips and Meat Pies. You can get the meat pies to go.

This post is a combo of three months (most likely it will be every year) due to tax season being in full swing. Check out my tax blog if you want to see why I'm so popular this time of year!

You may wonder why very few places got a score below 3. There's an explanation on the spreadsheet. In fact, there's a ton of information on the spreadsheet. But to answer the question, we go places we expect to be great. I'm not here to confirm that a mediocre restaurant is actually mediocre. So 2's will be rare, and 1's will be a catastrophic failure in planning.

Saturday, March 9, 2019

January Charleston Restaurant Visits

Name                        Loc                    Rating   Beer Selection Rating

Butcher and Bee NK 3 3
Michael's on the Alley DT 3               ?
Parcel 32 DT 4 3
Tiki Tacos Sum 3 2

Here's a link to the Master Restaurant Spreadsheet

Columns are Restaurant, Location, Rating and Beer Selection Rating.

Locations: Park - Park Circle, DT - Downtown, NK - North of 17 Downtown, Var - multiple locations, MP - Mount Pleasant.

Rating - 1 to 5 scale (5 being best (gotta be perfect to get a 5))

Beer rating:
1   No beer or little good beer (or a bad brewery)
2   Below Average (or a mediocre brewery)
3   Some locals and other good brews (or an OK brewery)
4   Excellent (or a good brewery)
5   Best (or a great brewery)

Butcher and Bee is a casual restaurant with good food and a nice outside area
Michael's on the Alley we went VERY off time and were the only ones there. Food was quite good.
Parcel 32 was a great experience and highly recommended
SNOB continues to be one of the go-to places among the great selection of restaurants on East Bay
Tiki Tacos has really good tacos at an exceptional price.

You may wonder why nobody got a score below 3. There's an explanation on the spreadsheet. In fact, there's a ton of information on the spreadsheet. But to answer the question, we go places we expect to be great. I'm not here to confirm that a mediocre restaurant is actually mediocre. So 2's will be rare, and 1's will be a catastrophic failure in planning.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Military Spouses Residency Relief Act Change

A lot of people seemed to have missed this, but there is a MAJOR change to the Military Spouses Residency Relief Act!
In the past, the spouse of a service member had to have established residency in the military member's state of residency in order to claim that state for residency.
Now, to summarize, the spouse of a service member may claim one of two states as their state of residency: the state they live in, or the service member's state of residency.
On initial reading of the law I can see very little restriction on the spouse changing this as needed, especially after a PCS move. The states may feel differently.
The law took affect for 2018 tax year and later.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Ray on Toxic Masculinity

So there's a term floating around "toxic masculinity."
I used to just call them d*ckheads.
It's okay to be a man you know... and like to do things like fix your own plumbing, root for your favorite team or build sh*t or find inventive ways to blow sh*t up.
It's definitely cool to bring your sons along when you're doing the above... it's even cooler when you bring your daughters.
It's also cool to read poetry, check out museums or Broadway shows or cry at the end of the Notebook...
Conversely totally acceptable to cry at the end of Red Dawn and Field of Dreams... man, I'm getting choked up just thinking about it.
It's very cool to have a Dental Plan.. Change a Diaper... shovel snow.... master hardscaping.... take out the trash.... learn to BBq... kiss boo boo's... leave the light on... read bedtime stories and yes...
Blow sh*t up.
It's not cool to raise your voice to your kid's Mom... cat call a lady... raise your hands in unprovoked violence but it is cool that should a man impede his violence upon you.... you smash his f*cking face... unless of course you can offer some healing through love.
And of course it is always cool to blow sh*t up.
It's cool to go to Church... but more important to love God as God loves you and it's very masculine to love your neighbors and to look another man in the eye when you give him a firm handshake....
It's cool to smile during said handshake.
It's cool to color outside the lines and sing Regina Spektor at the top of your lungs directly after you've listened to Rage Against the Machine.
It's cool to vote Democrat and cool to vote Republican and better to vote Libertarian.
It's cool to change your mind.
Admit when you're wrong.
Kneel during the Anthem and it's cool to stand Tall and proud to Salute your nation.
It's cool to obey the major laws and bend the minor ones 
Being a man isn't about bullying other non-alphas... it's not about "slaying ass"...
It's not about having 1,000 different lovers but finding the 1,000 lovers inside your One.
Being a Man is about protecting the weak... and strengthening with your love. Being a man is about being the cornerstone of your home and providing for your family. Being a man is about sticking up for what you think to be right and having the intellect and literacy to defend it.
Everything else.... that's about being a boy.
Now some folks nowadays think that is macho talk... and I can respect that perspective....
After generations of abuse and belligerence it's hard for me to say trust us... depend on us... believe in us....
I was having a conversation with an old friend a few nights ago....
Metal af.
Police Officer.
Good father.
Good husband.
Full of love. And we chatted. Oh the children we are raising!
We have an opportunity to guide this generation to the greatest our society has ever seen... a balance of love and accountability and empathy and responsibility.
Don't miss the opportunity. Whether you're a parent or not... someone is always watching.
To be honest this a truth for me and despite the recent rise of language attacking "manhood" or "masculinity" in all it's forms I don't take my direction from hashtags. I let my heart guide me.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Ray on Political Discourse

You know what I would honestly like to see...  and I mean this 100% sincerely....

I would genuinely like to see folks discuss their points not following Party lines...

Like seriously...  it's not that the Democrats have all the answers and it's not like the Republicans have all the answers... 

But truthfully both sides often have valid points....  yet the same actors show up blindly saying the same regurgitated crap at about the same time every day....   it's the same party speak from the same party websites and the same party channels and the same party speakers.

It's mind blowing how so many of you don't understand basic economics...  or even basic f*cking civics....  or even your self proclaimed party's stance.

And I wouldn't haven't a problem with any of you about your lack of knowledge but please for the good of the country please just SHUT THE F*CK UP if you don't know what you're talking about.

It's not that you can't have an opinion...  but just stop being a relay talking head for the propaganda machine. 

Everyone is a little bit dumber because of what you propagate...

We are all a little but stupider because of YOU.

You know who you are....

So here are some guidelines.... just try them on....  see how they fit....

1.  Running the WORLD'S BIGGEST ECONOMY is not the same as balancing your household checkbook.  You're not getting the Nobel Prize because you didn't bounce a check even after the EZ pass surprise upped your monthly withdrawal from your debit account.  Happens to me every month.

2.  As much of a d*ckhead as he is...  Donald Trump is OUR President.  You do no one any good with the #notmypresident social media protest...  #cyberfistintheair #innefectual.

3.  Republicans are not Nazis and Democrats are not Socialists (for the most part) but if we are not careful...

If we are not wise in the way we treat our countrymen....

They may be pushed farther into that extreme.

4.  Pelosi and Schumer... will not be historical examples of the greatness of America at the turn of the century... they're all embarrassing and completely out of touch....  it's honestly time for the establishment to re-establish itself.

5.  #blacklivesmatter is not a terrorist movement.  Black lives do matter and for all you #alllivesmatter folks that holds true too...  except "all lives" haven't been sh*t on by this country for 400+ years...  now I am not saying any one has an excuse for anything...  but we as a country need to view problems in the Black community as AMERICAN problems.   We need to view injustices as injustices against AMERICANS.

6.  For f*cks sake stop buying into his bullsh*t.... it's not "fake news..."  Just because you don't agree doesn't mean it's fake...  Jeeeeezzz...  can you PLEASE START THINKING CRITICALLY.

7.  Saying Michelle Obama looks like a man doesn't disgrace her... it disgraces you.

That was your 1st Lady.

She was dignified and a great ambassador of our people.

I don't agree with her politically but I was proud of her.

I mean seriously... what are you 12?

8.  OMG he's not a Muslim!  He was born in this country!  HE IS ACTUALLY NOT A SOCIALIST.  If you think he is please refamiliarize yourself with what a SOCIALIST government actually is.

9.   People who want to retain the right to have weapons are not part of the gun violence in America.  It is our right to have weapons.  The problem with guns in America is the same problem with opiates in America... it's the abuse and overproduction of them by their manufacturers.

10.  MOST Americans want Immigration reform.  Building a wall is not a reform.  Painting a whole race of people as drug smugglers, rapists and murderers is wrong.

What Canadians don't kill people?  Don't do drugs? 

The solutions to our Immigration problems lie within prosecuting those who hire them....  easing the barrier to entry...  and getting the most taxes as we can out of folks who want to come here and make a life for themselves.

11.  Sometimes Trump does the right thing or he may even be on the right track... but his fat belligerent mouth and thumbs should embarrass each of you.

12.  You know what men think about when they first get sent to prison.... 

...yep...  "how am I not going to get raped?" Or be someone's bitch...

You know what.... women... out in public... or in the workplace think about it all the time.


They have to consider it OFTEN as part of their decision making process.

That's not ultra-feminism...  that's men failing...
That's society failing....

We are better.

13.  Speak kindly to one another.  None of you are running for Office...with the exception of [Kurt Peluso, Vedat Gashi, Byron A Jr Divins , Robert Siano]

God gave us this wonderful land... and whether we were born here, or immigrated here... we, thank God, have inherited it at a time where we can be a shining example of a great society that will last the history of the human race. I really believe that.... I really believe we are better than what we are showing the last few years.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

The Government Shutdown and Refunds...

The IRS will be issuing refunds during the government shutdown.

They will start accepting returns on January 28th.  Most refunds will appear in 6 to 21 days after this.

Returns with Earned Income Credit, Additional Child Tax Credit and Refundable Education credits will not be processed until February 15th and refunds should appear 6 to 21 days after that date (or the filing date, whichever is later). This is due to ongoing efforts to halt tax identity theft.

Thursday, January 3, 2019

December 2018 Charleston Restaurant Visits

Name                            Loc                    Rating   Beer Selection Rating

California Dreaming WA 3 1
Cane Rhum Bar DT 4 1
Chubby Fish DT 4 2
Coast Brewing Park 5 4
Commonhouse Aleworks Park 3 4
EVO Park 5 3
Herd Provisions Var 3
Holy City Brewing NC 3 3
Madrigal's Var 4 0
Short Grain Var 5
Sorghum and Salt DT 5 2
Sweet Belgium DT 3 0
Ted's Butcher Block DT 4 2
The Hold at Revelry NK 4 4

Here's a link to the Master Restaurant Spreadsheet

Columns are Restaurant, Location, Rating and Beer Selection Rating.

Locations: Park - Park Circle, DT - Downtown, NK - North of 17 Downtown, Var - multiple locations, MP - Mount Pleasant.

Rating - 1 to 5 scale (5 being best (gotta be perfect to get a 5))

Beer rating:
0   No beer or little good beer (or a bad brewery)
1   Below Average (or a mediocre brewery)
2   Some locals and other good brews (or an OK brewery)
3   Excellent (or a good brewery)
4   Best (or a great brewery)

California Dreaming is a nice restaurant with a great view. Staff inconsistency is the biggest issue, but great for out of town guests with some kids or big groups.
Cane Rhum Bar has great drinks and some really good Caribbean food. Good staff.
Chubby Fish is a small place with a small menu of really great seafood.
Coast Brewing is the brewery I consider to be the best in Charleston. We owe a lot of what is great about beer in this state to the owners here. Sometimes they have Big Boned BBQ but usually limited food. They are adding a traditional tasting room (right now you drink on the brewery floor). Super staff. 
Commonhouse Aleworks is a decent size brewery with a good drinking space and nice outdoor area. Regularly has food trucks..
EVO: Best combination of pizza and beer in town! The Pork Trifecta is unbelievable. Get the large, and have a fried egg on a slice for breakfast next morning.
Herd Provisions is a food truck with amazing Poutine.
Holy City Brewing is one of the oldest Charleston Breweries. They were around when things were just starting to take off.
Madrigal's is a food truck with the best Empanadas around.
Short Grain is a popup kitchen with great Asian food that can be found at Edmund's Oast Brewing Company on Tuesdays.
Sorghum and Salt is a cool little place with a nice chef's counter. Great food and awesome staff. is a tiny retail store with almost a dozen taps and a cooler of beer to drink on premises.
Sweet Belgian is a unique little waffle place.
Ted's Butcher Block is like a combination deli, butcher and restaurant. Really good meat, charcuterie and meals.
The Hold at Revelry is the "sour" brewery for revelry. Cool bar with great beer. No food, though there is good stuff close.

You may wonder why nobody got a score below 3. There's an explanation on the spreadsheet. In fact, there's a ton of information on the spreadsheet. But to answer the question, we go places we expect to be great. I'm not here to confirm that a mediocre restaurant is actually mediocre. So 2's will be rare, and 1's will be a catastrophic failure in planning.

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

2018 Boomer Deduction Worsheet


The Trump/GOP tax law eliminated the entire employee business expense category which included the Boomer Deduction.

There is no Boomer Deduction anymore.