Saturday, January 9th, 2016
Gas Station Convenience Store
“Playoffs tonight. What all do you think we need?”
“Um, beer – semi-good beer, though. Chips. Queso. Salsa. Maybe pick up some wings or order a pizza. What are you thinking?”
“I don’t know, I think that covers it.”
“Sounds good to me.”
The two roommates walked into the gas station convenience store with a general idea of the supplies needed for a night of mediocre football match-ups. Normally, they’d go to some place nicer, but since they needed to get gas, they figured they’d kill two birds with one stone. Upon entry, the pair was surprised to see a line at the cashier’s register. Their surprise turned to questions, but their questions were answered when they overheard “Don’t forget where you bought your winning ticket” from the cashier.
It was the $900 million Powerball.
After an exhausting first week back at work, post-holiday slumber, he still wasn’t back up to full speed. The PTO clung to him like an extended hangover, and the memories of a few vacation days now seemed like a distant dream. Even though he had seen numerous memes on Instagram and jokes on Facebook, it had completely slipped his mind that the night’s lottery winnings were valued at $900 million. Suddenly, this new revelation jumped to the forefront of his mind, and he resolved to purchase $10 in lottery tickets, five drawings in total.
“You know what, man? Normally I feel like this is a waste of money, but alternatively, I guess this money would’ve gone to beer that I’d be pissing out of my body in three hours, anyway. I’m gonna get some tickets.” He stated to his roommate who concluded likewise.
With their Powerball tickets in hand, the two paid for a six-pack of New Belgium Accumulation, a 12-pack of Bud Light, a couple bags of chips with a couple jars of dip, and then got in his car. From the moment he put his keys in the ignition, his mind slipped into fantasy, imagining what he would do with his newfound fortune.
“Man… $900 million… What all could I do with that? Hmm, let’s see — Mansion in Cabo. New house for my parents. Aston Martin for me. Give some money to friends and relatives. Donate money to good causes? Yeah, I guess I could be a good person. Buy a 200-foot yacht to sail to my very own island in the Caribbean. Bust out El Chapo. Give the finger to my student loans agency. Fake tits for my future wife after I sleep with half of Hollywood. Divorce settlement with said wife because I’ll be too drunk to remember to sign a prenup. Get DJ Khaled to run against Donald Trump. Literally run. 400 meters. Start an NFL Franchise in LA. Make Manziel head coach and quarterback.”
He then played out in his mind how he would quit his job and hypothesized the new careers he would undertake with the freedom and happiness provided by extreme wealth.
“I think I’d walk into my boss’s office, accompanied by a mariachi band, and start making it rain singles while singing a T-Swift song about breaking up. As for my future career. I guess I could really do whatever I wanted. Maybe start my own record or movie label. Maybe even start my own charity.”
All of the euphoric false realities swirling in his head were soon forgotten when he arrived at his apartment. He snapped back into the real world, ready to be bored to death by an AFC Wildcard game that pinned two quarterback greats against each other.
Unfortunately for him, this game provided no excitement for his afternoon, and the later game offered little excitement for his evening until the end. It was around the time the second game ended, 11:30 or so, that he remembered the Powerball numbers had been drawn about thirty minutes prior. He quickly located and checked his tickets, and found that of all 30 numbers that appeared on his five tickets, he had gotten a total of one right. He would have no yacht, no island, and no Los Angeles Manziels. He would have to return to his job Monday, to continue his 9-to-5 slavery.
As he started to think about it, however – his possessions, his friends, his loans and debts, his job – he realized it wasn’t all bad. In his mid-20s, he had a small group of solid friends, a decently-paying job, and a modest new car. Sure, he didn’t like his job – the fact that it was a 40-50 hour a week commitment and the fact that he’ll be working 40-50 more years of his life – and he would be much happier without his auto loan, student loan, and inflated rent, but things could be much worse. He was alive and kickin’ it, living whatever is left of the American dream, able to afford some of life’s luxuries, and not worried about meeting this month’s utilities bill.
“Life certainly sucks at times, but it could certainly suck more,” he concluded.
He didn’t hit the jackpot, but he felt pretty damn close. .
Image via Shutterstock