Let me first get my confession in before I get too deep into this rant. Yes, I admit that I have played the lottery once in my life when I turned 18 and was old enough to buy a lottery ticket. My purchase even included some scratchers. But in my defense, this is sort of a rite of passage. Doesn’t everyone go out on their 18th birthday to buy cigarettes, porn, and some lotto tickets??? OK, so maybe buying porn is a bit old school. Let’s be honest no one pays for porn anymore when they can get it online for free.
Needless to say, I didn’t win millions the one and only time I played the lotto.
Now onto the rant…
Do you want in on our office lotto pool?
How many emails have you gotten from colleagues in the office asking if you want in on the office lotto pool? I don’t know about you, but I have had enough invitations to throw my money away that I am annoyed every time I hear about the lotto. I really don’t care that the Power-Ball is $350m – and I really don’t care how much fun it would be if we all won and were able to quit on the same day.
And every time I politely decline, the guilt trip comes. “Well you’ll be sorry if we win and all walk out of here,” someone says. Or my favorite, “You will be the only one left and then you’ll be poor and lonely.”
Typically I just answer, “Yeah, that would really suck.”
But in my head I am thinking, “how F-ing stupid could you be?” I really wonder if people even understand the math behind the lotto. Have you ever looked at the statistics of winning? The fact that you are playing the lotto reinforces the fact that you will likely never be rich.
The last email invitation I got to join the office pool, I drafted this response:
If you guys win, I will manage your money for you and make sure you don’t go broke like most of the other lotto winners. Oh, and by the way, did you know that you have a 1 in 175,223,510 chance of winning? Do you realize how small your chances are? You have a 0.000000006 % chance.
Why do so many people just not get the math?
In my opinion,, you already won the lotto by being born in the United States. With 7B people on earth and about 300M in the US, you have a 4.3% chance of being born here. Your odds of being born in the US are 7.5M times greater than winning the lottery. Why push your luck?
- You have a 1 in 700,000 chance of being struck by lightning this year in the U.S. or 1 in 3,000 in your lifetime.
- You have a 1 in 14 chance of being murdered in Honduras or a 1 in 25,000 chance of being murdered in New York.
- You have a 1 in 7.4 chance of having a threesome sometime in your life.
- You have a 1 in 23 chance of making six figures in the US.
- You have a 1 in 106 chance of becoming a millionaire (just don’t count on the lottery getting you there)
I am just saying…its simple math.
The take away…
Please stop wasting your money and start contributing to your 401K for crying out loud. At least contribute the minimum to get the company match!!! And at the very least, if you want to be dumb with your money, please just take me off the damn email string.
Once and for all, NO I DON’T WANT TO PLAY IN THE DUMB-ASS LOTTERY POOL. IT’S A LOSERS GAME AND I LIKE TO WIN(OR AT LEAST HAVE A STATISTICAL CHANCE OF WINNING).
However if you want to learn how to invest your money and make your money grow into millions, let’s talk, immediately if not sooner.
– Gen Y Finance Guy
p.s. if you want some other lottery winner statistic you can check them out here.