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Playing Powerball Is For Losers

First off... You lost.

Secondly... I knew you would.

I know the giant Powerball drawing has already been talked about ad-nauseam at dinner tables, bars, coffee shops, social media platforms, and on this esteemed website long before I decided to chime in.

But unlike my colleagues, I don't want to highlight the potential pitfalls that await the most recent winners... Klemmer did a great job with that...

Nor do I want to search for details of the potential fix that was in when it came to the results... Dante was all over it...

And my handsome friend Nate broke everyone's heart with the sad news they didn't win…

There's only one thing I want to point out when it comes to Powerball or just lotteries in general…

Don't play them.

Lotteries are for fucking losers, and you will never win.

Not only that, it is arguably the most efficient way to separate a moron and his money by using only one simple tool: Hope.

"All you need is a dollar and a dream!"

"Hey, you never know!"

"You gotta be in it to win it!"

"What kind of mega millionaire would you be?!?!"

"Today could be the day."

"Don't let the big one get away."

"Dream Big. Win Big."

All these pithy little slogans trying to instill FOMO into intellectual infants who have a 1 in 292 million chance of winning something.

And that "something" was around 2 billion dollars… Except it wasn't.

That 2 billion turns into a still-overwhelming $500 million by the time it hits your account, and, for some reason, that's okay with everyone.

And you can say…

"Well, $500 million is still a lot of money, Large."… Obviously, but it ain't NOWHERE NEAR the $2 billion you took a chance on.

Or…

"I'd be happy playing $6 to win even $100 million, so I don't care how much they take."… WHY?

Amuse me, and logically take the "hope" variable out of this equation just for a second… Please.

Where in the world could I ask you to give me money that I am almost guaranteed to keep 100% of because your odds of winning are absolutely minuscule?

And in the off-off-off-off-off-off-off-off-chance you do win?… Well, then I award you an unreasonably low percentage of the prize money that you were playing for and keep the lion's share for myself.

Where in the fucking world does that make sense?

Don't answer that because I will… It doesn't make sense.

And I know I said hope is the x-factor for this universal stupidity, but there's another driving force I failed to mention- Desperation.

Giphy Images.

That's why lotteries are usually regressive, meaning lower-income groups spend more of their budgets on lottery games than higher-income groups… People desperate for money do illogical things to acquire it.

BUT Powerball tends to be the least regressive lottery game because wealthier folk also buy tickets when jackpots soar.  So the normal workboot and Carhart-wearing people standing in line for their tickets are now integrated with soccer moms wearing Lululemon pants and Hoka sneakers.

And you know what Karen, Christina, Jose, and Claudio all have in common as they try not to make eye contact with each other at the gas station?

Don't answer that again because I am dying to… They are all lining up to get fucked.

And please don't question any of the math in this blog… Perhaps the odds are slightly better in most instances, and perhaps the payouts are slightly fatter depending on where you live or how you choose to receive your winnings… The facts remain.  

  1. You're almost certain to never win.
  2. When you lose, you lose 100% of what you put in.
  3. Those who win get an abnormally low percentage of what they were buying a ticket for.

"But some of it goes to charity, Large."

Oh, really?… Well, fuck charity… If I wanna help others with my winnings, I will cut the check myself.

"But some of it goes to improving infrastructure in your state, Large."

Oh, really again?… Show me one improvement in my state that I didn't pay for with my fucking tax dollars.

And if New Jersey was to say, "Hey, New Jerseyites… Joe Schmoe from Teaneck just won $2 billion dollars, but we're only gonna give him only about a quarter of that (because he doesn't know any better) and the rest will be divvied up among active taxpayers to an equal amount that will be canceled off of one of your utility bills in December." then I would feel differently.

But that will never happen.

Instead, MILLIONS of lemmings will once again line up to buy TENS OF MILLIONS of dollars worth of losing tickets for no reason at all… Except, of course, for hope and desperation.

Giphy Images.

Good luck next time, everybody… I hope you win, but I know you won't.

Take a report.

-Large