Winning the LotterybyBOSTONFICTIONWRITER©
I am counting the days until I win the lottery. Any day now, I will hit the lottery.
"What's the number? Does anyone know what the lottery number was last night?"
I've been playing the same loser lottery number now for more than 25 years, ever since the stupid thing started. Over the years, I've won a few dozen free bets, I won $10.00 a few times, and, once, I one $100.00. I deduced from my losing percentage in lottery winnings that I am not lucky in that regard. My luck, thankfully, comes in other way.
Yeah, yeah, I know, had I put the money I spent on lottery tickets in the stock market at a 13% yearly average rate of return, reinvested my dividends, gotten a couple of stock splits, reaped the bullish economy of the Gulf War and the Iraq War, and/or a dot.com success, such as Microsoft or Google, I may have been a multimillionaire. Well, I did not do that. Okay? I'm just like everyone else, a dumb loser who plays the lottery hoping to hit the big one.
Yet, as soon as I stop playing my number, switch to another number or forget to play, that is when they will call my loser number making it a winning number. Just my luck, I'm cursed to continue to play this loser number until (gasp) I cannot play anymore.
"Wow, it's too bad that Freddie died yesterday because that number he played for fifty years came out today."
We all want something for nothing. Right? Okay, except for that happy, peaceful guy standing in the back of the room, the Red Cross volunteer who just finished a double stint in the Peace Corp, found a wallet with $2,000 cash and gave it back to the owner, and who has never scratched a lottery ticket. There are always exceptions. Yet, for the rest of you normal people, dreamers, and schemers, what would you do with the money if you hit the big one?
C'mon, don't be shy. I want some ideas because I know any day now, I can just feel it, I am going to win the huge jackpot, mega, multimillion dollar prize and be the big winner.
Yes, of course, if you won you would buy a new car, pay off your mortgage, pay off your credit cards, buy a house or a bigger house and/or a vacation home, send the kids off to college or pay off their student loans or your student loans, give your kids, your parents or your friends money, travel everywhere, and buy everything. We all would do that but, after you did all of that, then what would you do with the money you had left? Yes, the guy in the back just said, "I'd do it all, again."
"Who said that? Someone in back just said that they would save it. You sir, do not deserve to win the lottery. It is people like you who make dreamers like me look bad. Save it my ass. Lottery money must be spent. What the Hell is wrong with you? You must be Scottish or something. Get out of here!"
Okay, that's two possible answers but the question still remains. Except for the above, what would you do with that amount of money if you won the lottery? I am looking for novel ideas, inventive ways to spend millions of dollars. Hell, what a waste to have any of it left when I died, you know? My dream is to win it all today and spend it all tomorrow. Now, that's living life large. Yeah, sure, I would take care of my children making sure that they had a better and brighter financial future. Yet, what would you do with the rest of it after you did all of those sensible things (and yes, saved some of it, too)?
I would hire people to do everything for me, especially the things that I hate doing, like cleaning up after my dog, and washing, putting away, and ironing my clothes. I would hire a personal assistant to food shop and run my errands because errands are the biggest pain-in-ass part of life. Never again would I have to wait in line anywhere for anything.
I would hire someone to take my telephone calls.
"Hello, this is Freddie's phone. Sorry, he is too busy to take your call. Yes, I will tell him his girlfriend called. Pardon? Oh, okay, I will tell him his ex-girlfriend called if he does not personally call you back in two minutes."
I would hire someone to make my telephone calls.
"Hello, this is Freddie's telephone assistant returning your call. Yes, I know you told me to tell him to personally return your call, but he said that he is too busy to do that and he will call you...hello? Hello?"
I would help the needy. Yes, absolutely. I am a generous type of guy. I would scour the mall to find the most deserving woman who needed a Victoria's Secrets makeover, so long as she allowed me to not only watch her try on things but also to help her try on things.
"What? You are done shopping, already? What do you mean, you are done shopping? We've only been here three hours. Here, try on these bras and panties."
If I won enough, I would hire a battery of lawyers to sue the Massachusetts State Lottery Commission for false advertising. Yeah, talk about biting the hand that feeds you, but I would. I would sue the bastards.
They blatantly advertise and falsely claim that if you win, you will be a millionaire. How is winning one million dollars paid over 25 years less taxes make you a millionaire? All that does is allow you a little bit extra security. Perhaps, after winning, your wife no longer has to work. Perhaps, winning that million dollars paid out over 25 years, you would no longer have to work Saturdays or overtime. Yet, surely, you are by no stretch of the definition, a millionaire.
"What's Freddie doing still working? I thought he hit the lottery? I thought he was a millionaire?"
"Yeah, well, he gets a check for $40,000 every year before taxes. After taxes, he has $33,875, which he gives half of that to his ex-wife leaving him $16,937.50."
Yes, of course, a check every year for nearly seventeen thousand dollars is a nice bonus to look forward to, but you are not a millionaire. Only the Massachusetts Lottery Commission could get away with claiming that and not be sued for false advertising. I would sue them.
Not to mention that if you take the winnings in one lump sum, (and you cannot do that with every game) it is around 50% of the jackpot total. The whole thing is a scam. Further, how much of my one dollar bet goes into the jackpot pool and how much of that money goes to the state, cities, towns, and the Massachusetts Lottery Commission for their "administrative expenses"? Where is that public record? Sure, you definitely can get the information of how much money goes to which cities and towns by taking yourself down to lottery headquarters and making a nuisance of yourself but it is not information that is readily available. Further, if any other companies employed deceptive advertising and marketing, as does the Massachusetts state lottery, the Attorney General would have them in court.
Yet, unfortunately, unless you are an accountant working for the lottery commission, you will never find out how much of your one dollar bet goes to administrative expenses. Moreover, what are administrative expenses? Now, there's a vast lottery pool catchall, "administrative expenses", if I've ever seen one. I wonder what is considered administrative expenses, lobster dinners and champagne toasts for the top management of the lottery commission while traveling first class to advertise the Massachusetts miracle to other states and countries. C'mon, give me a break. Every day working at the lottery commission for the commission management is like hitting the lottery.
Never have I seen a position with the lottery commission advertised in the newspaper. Filled with nepotism, unfair hiring tactics, and patronage, it is a place where politicians feather their political machines by getting high paying jobs for their relatives, friends, and politically connected. It would not surprise me if they paid "certain" secretaries and "special" administrative assistants one hundred thousand dollars a year and more to work 20 hours of their 40 hour week. And why are they a commission in the first place? If they were a for profit business, their free spending ways would be accountable to the board of directors and strictly limited.
Oh, yeah, definitely, if I won enough money, I would sue the lottery commission for deceptive business practices in getting people to play, keeping them playing, and playing a shell game with the prizes and prize structure. Unfortunately, I'd be hard pressed to find a lawyer in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts who would take on the Lottery Commission.
Have you ever noticed, too, that it is always the people who cannot afford to play who are faithfully playing? The beginning of the month when the welfare and social security checks are received is when there is a rush on scratch tickets. I never play scratch tickets. Those things are a sucker bet. I consider a scratch ticket as having odds less than a slot machine and we all know what moneymakers slot machines are for the casinos.
I remember not long ago, they uncovered a big scandal where employees were stealing cash that came in from lottery agents before it was counted. Now, I am not talking about a few hundred dollars here and there. The employees were reaching in big bags of uncounted and unaccounted for money and stealing tens of thousands of dollars every day. When the smoke cleared, the commissioner resigned in disgrace ruining his plan to run for governor the following year, and a couple of their managers were fired and received the minimum prison sentence that was wiped away with probation. Now, we all know that if a black man in this country steals a loaf of bread, he's going away for 20 years and if he steals the bread in the south, they have the right to hang him, based on some obscure pre-civil war law. Yeah, it's almost that bad in racist America. Yet, that's another story for another time.
So, now, I won the lottery, now what? Do I take 25 years of payments or do I take a one payment lump sum. First, I would not claim the ticket in my name. I would hire a financial consultant, a lawyer, and a tax accountant. If you are lucky, you may find one person who is qualified to do it all. Yet, be prepared to hand out a several thousand dollars to set things up and more for someone to administer your financial assets and investment portfolio.
I'd have him setup a corporation and would claim the winning ticket in the corporate name, thereby, paying a much reduced tax rate over an individual tax rate, which could amount as much as a 25% reduction, depending on the amount of money won, a 50% individual tax rate versus a 25% corporation tax rate. Then, I'd use some of the money to buy another company, one that lost money so that, at year end, I'd have tax credits from business losses that I could use to offset the huge taxes that I was required to pay when I won the lottery. By buying a company that lost money, my investment would net me a handsome five or six figure or seven figure tax refund, depending, of course, on the amount of money won initially. The tax refund would pay for the company that I bought and I would still own a company. Smart, huh?
Actually, like everyone else, winning the lottery would buy my freedom. Never again, would I have to work. I could do anything, go anywhere, and buy anything at anytime. I'd buy season tickets to the Boston Red Sox games and a helicopter to fly me there over the traffic. Oh, yeah, now we are talking. If I won the lottery, I would sit home all day and write stories like this one that I just wrote for Literotica.
So, what would you do? Would you buy Literotica? There's a novel idea. Make the owners of Literotica an offer they cannot refuse and have them work for you.
"What's the number? Does anyone know what the lottery number was last night?"