In exciting home news, we had a squirrel in our kitchen yesterday. On Saturday I was watching football and heard a hella loud racket coming from the kitchen. I listened for a bit and it sounded like some largish critter was forcing its way down the vent for the stove hood, which exits out a narrow pipe up to the roof. I'm standing there, listening to all this, and all of a sudden said critter lands on the mesh grill of the hood vent, which suddenly bows alarmingly downward.
I'm not a huge fan of vermin in general, especially in my kitchen/home. At that point I'm assuming the vent cap on the roof came off, and that the squirrel (I'm just going with the squirrel theory at this point, as I don't want to imagine a rat that big, and the vent is too small for a raccoon or a possum) can get back out the way he wriggled in, so I grab a broom and start thwacking the mesh grill on the vent. Much scrabbling and commotion ensues, then silence. I assume he scampered back out and go climb on the roof. Except the vent cap is fine, all appears to be normal, and I'm a little puzzled at how he got into the damn thing to begin with.
So I basically just pretend it never happened, and all seemed well. Except I get home yesterday and the living room has been thrashed, Christmas tree ornaments everywhere, things knocked off the mantel, plants and other knicknacks in the living room windows all knocked to the floor. The little bastard had been in there the whole time and managed to chew through the stove hood grill, which dumped it into the kitchen, where it was then trapped. It laid low for hours and hours but finally started banging around in the kitchen, at which point the wife and I spent a hectic twenty minutes chasing it from room to room, trying to herd it out the open French patio doors. It was pretty freaked out and just kept scampering around madly, into the office, into the kitchen, back again, through the living room, back again, etc. I finally managed to half-punt it towards the door when it climbed on my foot and it managed to get it through it's peanut-sized brain that open door=good and ran outside. Fun stuff, squirrel chasin'.
In completely unrelated news, I'm really on the fence as far as what to do with money sitting in my Neteller account. Not to get into too personal details, but I've got about $20,000 in my account now, separate from assorted poker bankrolls tied up in sites, that's just sitting there, doing absolutely nothing for me. I'm hesitant to transfer it to a checking account, as I still balk at the idea of being a good citizen and reporting it as gambling winnings and giving the IRS its unholy chunk of it. It's actually been producing some income from me in recent months, with the dollar bottoming out versus assorted currencies, as I've been parking it in pound and euro denominated accounts on various sites and converting it back to dollars when it's favorable to do so. But I'm a little hesitant to keep playing that game, as I can't see the dollar getting beaten down much further.
I've also thought about steadily cashing out the Neteller account through their debit card. There are associated fees but they're less than what the IRS would grab and, according to what I can dig up, it'd be difficult for cash withdrawals from Neteller to ever be linked back to you, as far as audits, etc. Not impossible but not very likely. The only problem is that I really don't know what I'd do with the cash, as my day to day cash expenses are pretty small and I'd run into the same gangster/drug lord problems as far as finding a legitimate way to get that cash back into an interest-bearing medium of any sort, without looking suspicious.
I've looked into offshore accounts but you still hit the same wall, as far as eventually legitimately getting the money back into the US without incurring a ginormous tax burden.
I suppose I should just bite the bullet and be good, withdraw it to my checking account and declare it, pay taxes on it, blah blah blah. Hopefully I could recoup some of that by putting it to good use in my brokerage account.
Or, you know, just move to the Bahamas.