Above: Illustration by Chris Philpot.

Born This Way

To travel from Denver to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, for her granddaughter’s wedding, Maria De Marfil dutifully applied for and received a passport. It wasn’t until she got home from the wedding that she noticed the passport said she was born in Mexico. Not so. “I was born in Tierra Amarilla, New Mexico,” she says. She has since received another passport with the “New” in its rightful place.

Does This Mean No Taxes?

Belén resident Susan Monson recently filed her taxes using the IRS’s fillable-forms program. Almost immediately, she received a rejection notice. Digging into the program, she went hunting for her error and finally found that it had classified her New Mexico W-2 income as foreign income. “I deleted the offending block, did not recalculate, and submitted the return,” she says. “It was accepted.”

Bordering on … Something

When Nancy Pavelich, of Newport News, Virginia, attended a vacation-club presentation, she was mostly interested in the free gift. But then she got a “Missing” moment, too. When she told the presenter of her desire to visit New Mexico, that person asked, “What’s the difference between New Mexico and Mexico?” Pavelich explained that New Mexico is one of the 50 states and Mexico is a country south of us. Things then went from confused to confounding. “When we got onto the subject of vacations in Mexico,” Pavelich says, “the person proclaimed, ‘How about instead of Mexico, you vacation in Cancún?’ ” At which point Pavelich decided to throw in the towel—a beach towel, we presume.


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