Wrapping up the weekend

We made it safely back from San Antonio yesterday, fortunately with no speeding tickets; thanks to Chandira for the good karma. Included in our Saturday travel was a lengthy stop at the San Marcos Outlet Mall and Prime Outlets, which together rank as “the third best place to shop in the world” by ABC-TV’s “The View”. With architecture designed after the Piazza San Marco, it seemed like a fitting place for Mrs. Toast to shop for chic clothing and comfy shoes in preparation for her Venice trip — now only four weeks away (I was content to browse through Pottery Barn myself).

Following this shopping marathon, we ate dinner at an authentic Irish Pub that we serendipitously discovered in downtown San Marcos. I had originally thought of having an ordinary steak, but after checking out the fare I just had to try the local specialty instead. Really, it’s not every restaurant on this side of the pond that features bangers and mash on the menu. It was delicious, served with rich onion gravy and a traditional pint o’ dark Guinness Stout. Maybe next time I’ll order the Shepherd’s Pie.

Today’s been spent unpacking, and joining millions of other Americans who have been putting off a particularly unpleasant task until the last moment: “And it came to pass that in those days there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.” –Luke 2.1

This guy has been dead for 2,000 years and we’re still being taxed. No wonder he was such a great leader: when he gives an order, it sticks. With that in mind, I dedicate today’s episode of “The Buckets” comic strip to those of you who will be joining me in rendering, according to the IRS, approximately $2.7 trillion this year to Caesar’s successor, Uncle Sam.

Happy rendering!

Credit: by Greg Cravens and Scott Stantis, ©2007 United Features Syndicate

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