…I didn’t have an accountant, and I made out my own tax, so they sent for me because it was a joint tax, and I had [husband] Sam down as a loss ‑‑ you know, studio rent … Against my salary I deducted his loss. I was called by the board, and in those days they had three men, august gentleman, all of them sitting there. I brought our checkbook because we always had a joint account and I kept the books. Everything checked off but perfectly … These three men looked me over and then they told me to wait outside … Then they called me in again, and they asked me whether I would like to go out for a drink … I said, ‘No, I have to go back to work.’ They said, ‘You know, everything on the books is right, but we can’t understand how an attractive, young woman like you could be married to a total loss.’ I got so mad. I said, ‘If I’m not complaining, I don’t know why in the hell Uncle Sam should.’
Edith Halpert deals with tax scrutiny due to being the principle wage earner in her household. Hope you don’t have to face any panels of august gentlemen passing judgement on your lifestyle today!