Tag Archives: lottery

Lotto Fever

 The Powerball jackpot is currently at a record $700,000,000. Let that sink in. Seven hundred million dollars. Even Bill Gates thinks that’s a nice chunk of change. A jackpot that high causes a national pandemic. They call it lotto fever and it’s quite contagious. Even people who don’t normally play the lotto are buying tickets or pooling money with friends or coworkers. How can you not? A couple of bucks could yield you millions more in return. It probably won’t, but somebody’s got to win. And you can’t win if you don’t play. Believe me, I’ve tried. So you might as well buy a ticket. I already bought ten dollars worth of tickets and I’ll probably buy more. Tickets are the only remedy for lotto fever. Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young 

  

 

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Scratch-Off Lottery Tickets

Scratch-off lottery tickets are lotto tickets that are printed on cards. They are also referred to as scratch cards, scratchers, scratch-its, scratch tickets, etc. There are lots of different types of scratch-offs, but the premise is always similar. You buy a card for either a dollar, five dollars, ten dollars, or twenty dollars. The higher the price, the more likely you are to win. At least that’s why they want you to think. You play by scratching off certain areas of the card to determine if it’s a winner or not. The biggest appeal of scratch-offs is that you don’t have to wait for a drawing. You either win money right away or you lose money right away. You usually lose money right away. But if you get a winning ticket, you can cash it in right away and buy more scratchers.

Right now I’m hooked on California Lottery’s Lucky for Life. There’s one ticket that costs a dollar with a grand prize of $500 a week for twenty-five years. There’s one that costs two bucks with a grand prize of $1000 a week for twenty-five years. There’s another ticket that costs five bucks with a grand prize of $2,500 a week for twenty-five years. And the last ticket costs ten bucks with a grand prize of $5000 a week for twenty-five years. I haven’t won the jackpot yet, but I’ve won $20 on a five-dollar ticket. That’s enough to buy a couple of burritos.

Critically Rated at 12/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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The Lottery Ticket Paradox

The lottery ticket paradox was a stoney thought I had the other night as I clutched my Mega Millions ticket in my hand. Let’s say you go in on a $10 quick pick with a friend on the night of the drawing. He gives you five bucks, you throw down another $5 and buy the ticket. You text him a picture of the ticket as proof of purchase, then you stuff the ticket in your wallet and temporarily forget about it. A few hours later your buddy calls you saying that you hit the jackpot. That piece of paper that your fat ass is sitting on is worth millions of dollars.

But there’s a paradox here. The lottery ticket paradox. Did you have the winning ticket before the numbers were drawn? At what point did you become a millionaire? Was it when you purchased the ticket? Was it when the Mega Number was drawn? Was it when your friend called you and told you? Or do you have to wait until you receive that giant oversized check for it to be official? It’s essentially the chicken vs. egg debate. Does your ticket match the drawing, or does the drawing match your ticket?

Critically Rated at 13/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Broken dreams

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Lotto Pool

The Powerball jackpot was just at $600,000,000. That’s six hundred million dollars. That’s a lot of cheeseburgers. I was at work and casually mentioned that I bought a ticket and asked a coworker if he bought one too. Another coworker overheard and suggested that we start a pool. It seemed like a great idea, so we went around to all the different departments spreading the word. I started collecting cash and writing down names. We reached the initial target goal of $100 in less than an hour. Most people were eager to throw away ten bucks for the chance to win a few million. A select few refused to yield to stupidity. And bunch who were on the fence began to see how many other people were chipping in, and they decided that they didn’t want to be left out. After all, how shitty would they feel if we won and they missed their opportunity? Ten dollars per person adds up pretty quickly, and before you knew it we were up to $200, $300, and then $400 with no end in sight. I finally had to put a stop to it. I put a cap at 42 people in the pool so that we would buy a grand total of $420 dollars worth of lottery tickets. I thought that 420 would be a magical number to represent San Francisco. That would give us a total of 210 chances to win. Not great odds, but sufficiently more than my own mediocre $10 ticket. Being part of a lotto pool makes you feel like you have more of chance to win the jackpot (and you do). You still won’t hit the jackpot, but half the fun of playing the lottery is just wishful thinking. It’s fun to imagine that what if moment. The rest of the shift was spent dreaming and speculating and planning out how to spend our winnings. The joy was infectious. The possibility of 42 of us becoming instant millionaires simultaneously made the rest of the day fly by. And even if we don’t win this jackpot, there’s always another lottery and another day to win.

Critically Rated at 15/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Playing the Lottery

I play the lottery. You can’t win if you don’t play. I play, but I don’t win. I put $5 on Mega Millions and $5 on Super Lotto twice a week. I’ve done it for that last few years. I keep all my losing stubs, partially because I’m a hoarder, partially to remind myself how dumb I am. Using basic math, I can tell you that I’ve spent $5200 on lottery tickets and I’ve won maybe $400. Not a lump sum either, I’m talking about $400 total over five years winning $1-$15 at a time. I’ve never made over $20 from one ticket. I keep telling myself I’m due, so I keep on playing. And I keep on losing. I only need to win once though.

Critically Rated at 7/17

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Broken dreams

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The Lottery Changed My Life

TLC’s best reality show is about people who won the lottery. It makes you stop thinking, “What if I won the lotto” and start thinking, “When I win the lotto.” It is a very dangerous show to watch, you will just assume that you are next. It shows the two types of winners: the ones who spend the money wisely, and the ones who blow through it like Whitney Houston at the crack house (what? Too soon?).  It is a cool show that shows you the pros and cons of winning the lottery, while simultaneously subliminally selling you the idea that you will win the jackpot.

Critically Rated at 11/17

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