Like the rest of you morons, I donated to the Human Stupidity Fund by purchasing a Powerball ticket in advance of Saturday’s near-record prize. And like the rest of you, I didn’t win. In and of itself, that’s not interesting. What is, however, is the bizarre effect the prospect of out-of-this-world money does to an otherwise rational human being. I dutifully monitored my emotions as the drawing drew closer. They reflect a greater cultural phenomenon: the stages of playing the lottery.
The Powerball is at what, now? Most of us don’t actively monitor lottery jackpots so when we find out the pot is nine-figures, something inside of us clicks and it becomes the singular most important thing in the world.
When the fuck is the next drawing? Hopefully in the next five minutes because I WANT TO PLAY RIGHT NOW.
Oh, it’s not for another 48 hours? I don’t know if I’ll care by then. Also, the store is, like, soooo far away. Maybe I’ll just stay home and beat off instead. Besides, there’s no way I can win.
Is that all my life is? Where did I go so wrong? What, exactly, am I living for? That money would really help me claw out of this hellhole I call existence. Maybe I will play.
I’m going to pick numbers no one’s ever thought to pick before. My numbers will be unique, like a snowflake. I alone possess the power to outsmart the unbeatable system.
Well, the first thing I’m going to buy with my windfall is ..
Who are my true friends and who will come out of the woodwork demanding money after I strike it rich? Fuck ‘em all. No one’s getting a red cent.
God, is it heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeere yet? I want to start buying stuff.
The Big Reveal
This is it, my big moment. Wait, those aren’t my numbers. I didn’t win shit. What a waste of money.
This is some bullshit.
Hey, maybe I misheard them. Maybe that was a practice drawing. Let me re-check my tickets.
I didn’t care anyway. Let me navigate over to PornHub, like I should have done in the first place.
Rinse. Repeat the next time an egregiously large jackpot surfaces. Live to lose another day.