3:18 p.m. - September 04, 2007
I'm in the market for a new tax adviser / accountant / financial planner because my previous accountant did not feel qualified to handle the intricacies of my needs. No big deal so I began searching and, based on a couple references, contacted a woman named The Accountant. I had to do a modified phone intake and just now got an email from The Accountant letting me know she'll take me on as a client. You know what she did, though? She Googled me! She said that she was curious about my background, which I guess is harmless enough, but she came across Amazon and a few other sites and this is what her email says:
I am impressed by your obvious success as an author and the high volume of sales. I anticipate a strong working relationship to satisfy your financial planning needs. My hourly rate is $225.00.
Notice the last line - "my hourly rate is $225.00." Know what really ticks me off? Her rate is more than what she charges the people who recommended her and higher than I was quoted by the office manager. Know what I think? She Googled me and saw how much the books sell for and figures she can charge me more. How wrong is that? I feel invaded. Damn Google - a man can't keep any secrets.
I had rather hoped to arrive in her office in my customary dress-down attire and make her eyes widen when I revealed my net worth. Okay, so it was a silly fantasy, especially given the fact that this is Silicon Valley and my net worth isn't even chump change compared to people who really have to have money people working for them. But for me it was a pleasant diversion.
I'm still going with her though because I don't want to start the search process again. The fees I'll have to pay turn my stomach but one thing is clear - I have to get out of the Alternative Minimum Tax butt-fuck that I'm stuck in now. I still can't figure out how the super-rich pay less taxes than I do, but I'm catching up.