It’s all in the buttocks…

buttock-lift-indianapolis-dr-barry-eppley

I find that there are little moments in life that catch us out; some good and some bad.

Driving home from afar and being able to pick up a local radio station again is a good moment. A hazy signal at first and not clear enough to listen to comfortably,  but becoming stronger with every motorway bridge that passes. The security of familiarity.

A bad moment – and no offence to my accountants, is any correspondence from them at all.

A cloud in a blue sky. It is an email most usually. A request for information that I never have readily to hand. An email that remain bold and unopened as it drops down my inbox before I pluck up the muster to open it. A similar thing occurs to the actual letters I receive in the post; utilitarian brown envelopes emblazoned with HMRC. I find acronyms increasingly terrifying these days and heading the list still is HMRC or Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs.

And that these are bad moments has much to do with my very narrow and refined skill base.

Recording a podcast last week with my son, Sam, he put this question to me…

“Dad, what would you have done in your life, if you hadn’t been funny?”

This question was not meant kindly.

It wasn’t to infer that I am so funny, that there is nothing else I could have been as successful at.

Posed as a question stating much more my broader inadequacies rather than an affirmation of my funniness.  And that I was not offended at all is a good indication that he makes a good point.

That point being, that in essence, mine is a bow with just the one string.

Certainly I would never have made it in business. Or in any job with a clerical steer.

I can’t organise anything. Not even a sock drawer. I am behind every curve. I am much happier with a fitted sheet than a spread sheet. I file my nails more often than my accounts.

And as such, my kids might well have grown up hungry if I hadn’t been able to make people laugh.

How about this for warped thinking...

In March this year, all of my work evaporated and searching for an upside, I decided that the catastrophe of having zero income was actually a good thing because now I have no need to worry about my accounts.

And my misery for all things orderly and to do with officialdom is compounded by having a son like Tom.

You would imagine that Tom’s life is full of people? And you would be right.

Professionals. Highly trained and proficient people who get things done for him. Make his life easy. People who do the heavy lifting, enabling him to concentrate on doing what he does best; pretending to be someone else.

Breezing from movie set to movie set, interspersed with premieres and TV chat shows – and so the cycle continues…

Agents, publicists, lawyers, accountants, bankers, personal assistants, financial advisers, travel agents, security detail, personal trainers…

And largely this is the case.

Team Tom is a well honed machine. Made up of a series of highly paid professionals and one volunteer, who happens to be me.

I am the grit in this machine and without question, the weakest link.

You see, because Tom has fully embraced this proxy lifestyle, many elements of his life need to be coordinated. Some of the aforementioned professionals need an anchor point and unfortunately, this is where I come in. A role that my talent definitely does not extend to. Like a work experience intern learning as I go along.

And my ineptitude is exposed by the increasing complexities of Tom’s life.

This week I received an email from his accountants and immediately my spirits plummeted. The accountants had identified a number of payments from one of Tom’s bank accounts…

Note the words here… “one of…”

Payments that were business expenses and needed to be clarified.

Some of the payments I recognise and I was able to reconcile. But others are a mystery and remain so.

Tom is in Berlin and although we speak daily, it is usually a snatched conversation between takes and subject to unreliable signal strength.  Hardly conducive to specifics like…

‘Tom, in November 2018, there was a payment of X from bank account number ending…’

One of these highlighted payments was easy to identify – a  purchase of something called a Versaclimber. 

A piece of equipment that helps the owner become buff. (For this to occur, the machine needs to be used and not just owned)

I explain that this is essential for Tom if he wants to keep getting cast in movies that require him to appear without his shirt.

His accountants understand this but explain that the purchase of such a machine is not an allowable business expense and particularly so, if the equipment is kept at the owners’ residence because other family members (like me) might use the machine for their own pursuit of buff-ness.

This I accept but I still felt the need to clarify that this is not the case.

I have never ever used Tom’s Versaclimber and I have incontrovertible proof of this - which is namely my frankly, underwhelming buttocks.

Presenting this evidence to Her Majesty’s tax inspectors might be humiliating for me but I told his accountants that I’m game if they are.

Surely, worth it for the laughter, alone.

Which brings me back neatly to where I began - and Sam’s point about the only thing I am any good at.

 

 

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22 Comments

  1. Sydnee Coleman August 9, 2020
    Reply

    Lovely blog as usual Mr. H. I personally think that you are good at many things. You’re funny, which you already know about. You are a good and consistent writer, with the books you’ve done and the blogs. Also you are a fantastic father, just by what I know from your blogs, podcasts and Facebook lives. You care so much for your kids, that you are willing to do anything for them. And I know you think you are the weakest link in Team Tom, but to your son, you are probably the strongest, and he knows he can come to you for anything. When asked what my dad is good at he states every time without fail “I’m a dumb dumb but I’m a good dad, or at least my kids think so” He takes pride in that fact that he’s a dad and so should you

  2. Leigh Fine August 9, 2020
    Reply

    Thanks for the laugh. You are very skilled at that. It seems that you are also pretty darned skilled at being a father, too.

    I’m new to your blog, and I look forward to the next one.

    • Roxana August 9, 2020
      Reply

      Omg i came here not expecting to laugh, thanks for making my day 🙂

    • Becky Mohr August 10, 2020
      Reply

      This is hilarious, thank you so much for giving me a much needed laugh today!

  3. Lorraine August 9, 2020
    Reply

    Great blog today Dom. You are not only good at being funny, you are an accomplished writer too. Accountants can easily strike fear into anyone’s heart, albeit they are supposed to be on your side. Tom may lead a charmed life but definitely wouldn’t be where he is without his trusty volunteer being there for him all the time. I listened to the Empowerment interview and was struck with how Tom spoke about you and your family. It was really nice to hear a young man speak so warmly about his dad. Keep on volunteering, (for Tom and the family)you are an absolute ace at it. Maybe keep everything else under wraps ☺️

  4. AG August 9, 2020
    Reply

    Gosh, could not stop laughing reading this blog and everybody around me thinking I m going crazy :)))
    I am sure u (sorry your buttocks) look way better than the photo provided :)))

  5. Paul August 9, 2020
    Reply

    Sometime a question from a child ( not that Sam is a child by any means ) can be both simple and extremely though provoking. I’m sure its easy now to say that you could never have been happy being a 9-5 cubicle/office resident, but thats because you’ve never done it. Perhaps if you hadn’t stolen that can of Pringle’s ( reference i hope i remember correctly), you might very well be a corporate leader in the supermarket supple chain. You can only do what you think is right at the time. You were funny before any of your offspring arrived. And you’ll continue to be funny. So tell Sam that being the best son, sibling, spouse, father, and friend is what you would have been. And are.

    Btw, send Tom a bill since your answered correspondence tor him, you heed to be paid. That would be true business expense 🙂

  6. Wendy August 9, 2020
    Reply

    This blog was hilarious. But you’re skilled at other things too! Sure, comedy might be your number one asset but that’s probably because you’re naturally funny and you’ve been doing it for a while. If you were trained in anything else, you could do it. Plus, you’re already a great father. I’m sure you get that a lot, and okay, maybe your wife had half to do with it, but you’re the other half. You’re part of the reason Tom is able to have “people” in the first place. You’re also great at finding evidence and proof that you don’t use exercise equipment. I would have never thought of showing my buttocks. That takes serious deducing skills.

  7. Jen Schiffner August 9, 2020
    Reply

    And this is where the value of stock photos (thank God!) over selfies becomes apparent Funny blog today, Dom! I am in disagreement with you regarding your lack of skills, however. You are a fantastic author (hello, The Fruit Bowl!) and observer of human nature. You bring people together and support others selflessly. Had you not been funny, you would have successfully found something else to provide and make the world a better place.

    As for unpaid skills, I think all 6 of the other Holland’s would argue that you are undoubtedly their most valuable asset (along with Nikki for the boys) and I’d wager that that daily call in the midst of his rather unorthodox life is something Tom cherishes more than he can ever express.

    • Wendy August 10, 2020
      Reply

      Oh don’t worry. I didn’t actually think this photo was of you. I know it isn’t and you wouldn’t do that. I was simply referring to your joke of proving you didn’t use to exercise equipment. Trust me, it never once crossed my mind that the photo was you. Plus we could probably find the phone you chose online. Okay, again. After seeing your patron video, I wanted to make it clear that in my comment I was only referring to the joke you made. Not the photo.

  8. M. August 9, 2020
    Reply

    Dom, you are funny!…and a little crazy!! I hope Her Majesty accepts your evidence! P.S. I looked twice!!

  9. Bertie Bear August 9, 2020
    Reply

    When I opened the blog I definitely was not expecting to see that picture! I can imagine you presenting your case to the HMRC. . I think after seeing Tom’s recent pictures we are all grateful he invested in the Versaclimber .

  10. Beth August 9, 2020
    Reply

    this is the funniest blog I’ve read! It shocks me the amount of money people spend on equipment to get “buffed” though… if its in your buttocks maybe invest in one of those toning machines (just kidding btw)

  11. Catalina August 9, 2020
    Reply

    That was awesome! I think, that if you haven’t been a funny person, you still have a talent with words and parenthood, so Tom would still be in the “hollywood world” and that would give you enough attention to be noticed by your books, so things could be quite similar to how are they today, and im glad for that. You are using all your talents! (At least the ones we know) hope you have a nice day!

  12. Coco August 10, 2020
    Reply

    This made me laugh out loud!!! Thank you very much I always look forward to reading these! Now I’m curious if the accountants will want proof or if they can take your word for it

  13. Avery Wickersham August 10, 2020
    Reply

    Brilliant. Absolutely brilliant. I wasn’t sure what to expect but this was a great blog nonetheless. I think it’s pretty safe to say that we all worry about our bank accounts if we’re not actually good at what we think we’re good at. As a writer, I’m terrified that I won’t make it. But I’m still pushing! Maybe someday I’ll be able to write something for actors like Tom—big-named actors who can bring my vision to life. If I make it that far, consider yourself hired! You deserve a big spotlight. Thank you for brightening my evening.

  14. Valia August 10, 2020
    Reply

    Today I found out that my mother was renting something and she said bike . I went to her to ask her you will buy me a bike and her answer was I rented a place to park our bike so I answered when it is coming her answer was I didn’t buy the bike yet .For God sake why did she rented without even getting the bike . The people around me I know they are using me because I have a good sense of humour I discovered that when a friend of mine took me to her sister and her friends and she told them that I have a sense of humour so I could tell them a joke I don’t even know them I stared for a bit and then I felt as a class clown and that is negative so I just said hi when they replied gretting me back I didn’t know what to do when I am in a problem what I do is run in my defence it was uncomfortable. I don’t think no one would know me without my sense of humour. I like making joke but I am not a comedian . My father bought a multi gym in quarantine because their was no gym my mum kept fighting because we don’t live in a castle so the room looks crowded he just bought it he doesn’t do anything with it and when my mum fights with him about why the hell he bought it he goes to sit on it he feel lazy to warm up so he gets injured for 2 weeks he recoveres and it keeps laying their when I try to train on it he usually keeps shouting ‘take care ‘ ‘don’t do that ‘ I liked this blog because buying stuff you don’t use in the end or having some sense of humour I know as the back of my hand .

  15. Susie August 10, 2020
    Reply

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but if an accountant buys a printer and his whole family uses it he can still claim it on his taxes. They don’t check the children’s fingers for printer dust. So you agreeing to drop your trousers as proof is really quite admirable!

  16. Susie August 10, 2020
    Reply

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but if an accountant buys a printer and his whole family uses it he can still claim it on his taxes. They don’t check the children’s fingers for printer dust. So you agreeing to drop your trousers as proof is really quite admirable!

  17. Faaiz August 10, 2020
    Reply

    Its nice how you and Tom chat daily on face-time. I think its really important to do that!

  18. Audrey August 11, 2020
    Reply

    We shall discuss buttocks toning on our show with you! Still in the works, just painfully slow making it fly.
    Thanks for the point of view

  19. Jim August 13, 2020
    Reply

    I honestly hope that isn’t your butt as there appears to be some-kind of surgery scares on it. Terrible place to have cosmetic surgery as who’s going to see it?? And I’d think it would hurt every-time you sat down for awhile.

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