Hell and Damnation! (To use some of the preferred profanity of Emerson, my favorite literary archaeologist-detective-hero of all time. As someone who enjoys relieving personal stress through imaginative swearing--inherited from my dad-- of course I must revere the "Father of Curses.")
Here's the thing. I'm already irritated about taxes. For those of you who do not own small businesses, you may not be aware that the tax deadline for corporations is March 15, instead of April 15. So basically, our tax season starts early, because, why not make the torture last longer? And we're behind, due to general slacktivity mixed with a generous helping of malaise.
The other thing--QuickBooks, the premier software package for small businesses, sucks sucks sucks sucks sucks. (I can't even bring myself to link to it because of the suckage.) Brendan can wax poetical on all of the bugs he has encountered in the almost 6 years of using it and upgrading it and losing files on it and not being able to email invoices on it, etc. But I can't speak for him. I'm going to complain about my own problems.
Problem #1: I use a Mac Mini. It's delicious and easy to use. I can be technically-minded when I must, but I just don't want to be. It makes me grumpy and prone to fantasizing about dropping machines out of high office windows, or taking a baseball bat to them, Office Space-style. My Mac lets me use a computer without having to think about installing drivers or go through lengthy set up obstacle courses. Love me some Mac.
But! Intuit, the evil makers of QuickBooks, has evidently decided not to pursue the Mac market. Which would be fine, except they try to confuse us Mac users by producing a QB version for the Mac! QB for Windows is buggy, but mostly functional. QB for Mac is so ridiculously termite-riddled that it is seriously unwise to even use the program (google the phrase "quickbooks mac bugs" for a taste). Evidently, if you cherish your business's financial data, you must not use QB for Mac as it is prone to losing it completely. So, we opted to install Parallels on my Mac and use a QB for Windows version instead. (Yes, I looked into Money and some of the other programs and decided that they didn't have the functionality I needed. I must have been high at the time. It's my only defense.)
Problem #2: QB has several Windows versions and given the price and the basic nature of my requirements for the cabin business, we went with QB Simple Start. Which should be renamed "QuickBooks for Simpletons." (Again, the thought of linking to it is nauseating. I'm sure you can google it.) It's little more than a version of Quicken (which I like and use) with some business-ish features. All packaged and dumbed-down for all of the Kindergarteners who are just learning to read and want to track the sales from their lemonade stands on the computer.
It is so ridiculous. To reconcile the bank account, for example, in Quicken, I click "Reconcile." In Simpleton, I have to go to the "For Your Accountant" menu and then click "Reconcile." Because that's how dumb they think I am--unable to reconcile a bank statement without the assistance of a CPA.
And here's the freaking thing that pissed me off and prompted this post. I need to send my 2007 financials to the accountant so that I can submit my Government Reckoning Forms on time. How do I send a year's worth of data from QB for Morons? Well, evidently, they didn't think that would be important to do, because here's what happened:
- I run the report. Easy.
- I look for a menu selection that says "email" or "export data" or "save to file" or "save as..." or anything along those lines.
- Hmmm...could it be under the "For Your Accountant" menu? Nope.
- I explore the help file until it's apparent that I'm tilting at windmills.
- Fine, I think to myself, I'll see if I can print it. So I naively hit "Print."
- I get a mocking error message that states there is no printer found, except the QuickBooks PDF Converter, which does not actually print, you simpleton! Why would you use that?
- Does it give me a choice to save my report as a PDF file? Oh, it is to laugh! Why would it do that? It just notes the existence of the QB PDF Converter and then does not allow you to use it! Yes, really! (I do have a printer hooked up to my Mac, but Parallels can't find it, and when I started getting instructions about installing drivers, I cursed and gave up. Besides, printing the damn report would do nothing to help my accountant who would probably charge me more than my 2007 Revenue to have one of their clerk peopleguys type it into one of their databases.)
- There is NOTHING I can do to actually get my data out of my database! Not in a way that would be remotely useful to my accountant! I am completely serious!
What. The. You-Know-What. am I supposed to do now?
I wonder if the Intuit guys have been courting any flaming lizard-monkey demons. They are certainly on the wrong side of the Battle between Good and Evil.