Wednesday, January 13, 2016
Why I am not buying a lottery ticket
I have nothing against gambling. I have nothing against the state holding them. I have nothing against losing.
My fear is that I would win the damned thing.
Look at Andrew Jackson Whittaker Jr.of Hurricane, West Virginia (about 15 miles from Poca) -- better known as Jack Whittaker. In December 2002, he won what at the time the largest Powerball jackpot ever, which was advertised as $314.9 million, but worth only $83 million after taxes when taken on a lump sum.
Only $83 million? What am I talking about? It was a ton of money, and Whittaker paid for every cent. The windfall proved to be his downfall.
He set up a foundation, and bout a house and a brand new SUV for the clerk who sold him the winning ticket. But his personal life was already had cracks in it, and the money was too large a load for him to bear. Within a month, he had a DUI.
He started going to the Pink Pony, a former Dairy Queen turned into a strip joint. Someone stole his SUV parked at the Pink Pony, which contained his briefcase that contained $545,000 in cash.
He had a wife, a daughter and a granddaughter. He lavished money on all three.
On September 17, 2003, her boyfriend was found dead in their home following a drug party. On December 9, 2003, she died of a drug overdose. She was 17. Money pays for a lot of parties when you are 17.
Within a year of winning, his life was a mess, as he was rolled by strippers and their boyfriends, and drugs killed his granddaughter.
The pre-lottery win Jack Whittaker was a far better man than I am. I can only imagine what four times as much money (the jackpot is now $1.4 billion) would do to me.
So you play the lottery. I'll keep my money -- and I will pray that you lose.
You are welcome.