01 August 2004

Sunday Midafternoon Blues

(This title inspired by Pentangle's ode to weekend-morning hangovers.) I've been doing a little bit of mathematical and financial analysis of royalty statements this week. Six hundred pages' worth of statements in seven-point sans serif type. And that's just one client for one royalty reporting period. (Ok, it concerns over 80 titles, but still…) And I have more to look forward to for the rest of the week; and dealing with a different publisher's royalty statements that are running five years behind; and so on.

I'm not an accountant. I don't play one on TV. I certainly don't get paid as if I play one on TV! I do know my way around a balance sheet, though; and I've had pretty good success at exposing some, shall we say, creative accounting systems—probably because it's easier to spot the rotting fish than make sure that one's catch doesn't include any rotten fish at all. Rotten as in the Denmark sense, that is—not as in inadequate refrigeration, although that latter problem may well implicate cooking the books…