47 posts tagged with Lottery.
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Lotteries were all the rage in eighteenth-century Paris.

Voltaire’s Luck by Roger Pearson [Lapham's Quarterly] “It was once said of Voltaire, by his friend the Marquis d’Argenson, that “our great poet forever has one foot on Mount Parnassus and the other in the rue Quincampoix.” The rue Quincampoix was the Wall Street of eighteenth-century Paris; the country’s most celebrated writer of epic and dramatic verse had a keen eye for investment opportunities. By the time d’Argenson made his remark, in 1751, Voltaire had amassed a fortune. He owed it all to a lottery win. Or, to be more precise, to several wins.”
posted by Fizz on Jun 22, 2016 - 7 comments

Bet your paycheck?

Here’s $100. Can you win $800 million at Powerball? (SLLATimes)
posted by Huck500 on Jan 8, 2016 - 185 comments

"I think society is in trouble when culture is ignored"

Have you ever fantasized about what you would do if you won the lottery? In June, Roy Cockrum of Knoxville, TN won the Powerball jackpot, taking home $115 million after taxes. Cockrum, whose varied career has included stints as an actor, stage manager, and Episcopal monk, has announced that he plans to use his new wealth to support ambitious productions by American non-profit theaters. [more inside]
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious on Mar 21, 2015 - 52 comments

"...the odds in all our games favor the lottery."

"It was the first step to uncovering what he says is a $134 million scam by the Oregon Lottery." Once upon a time, Oregon resident Justin Curzi was playing video poker on a Jacks or Better machine. He was playing draw poker, which allows you to discard cards. However, the game's "auto-hold" feature recommended that he discard a different card than he was considering--which he thought was terrible advice and would cut his chances of winning. [more inside]
posted by jenfullmoon on Mar 6, 2015 - 53 comments

When To Start Caring About the Powerball Jackpot

Walter Hickey at Business Insider looks at when you should buy a Powerball ticket and whether to take the lump sum or annuity if you win.
posted by reenum on Sep 28, 2013 - 50 comments

"Things are meant to be for a reason"

'It could have been us, but things happen. Sometimes it's better to be patient than right." Mindy Cradell has little regret about letting an older woman in front of her, while standing in line for the lottery. That woman, Gloria Mackenzie, became the sole winner of the $590 million Powerball jackpot, the largest in the history of American lotteries.
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Jun 7, 2013 - 64 comments

$100 Invested in 100 $1 Lottery Tickets

The thrill and rush of possibly winning started to wear off after about the twentieth losing ticket. Each card had a couple of “Life” symbols on them, and every time you got a second you just dreamed of seeing the third one under the remaining graphite. However it never appeared and never will and it just kind of turned depressing. How could people put themselves through this humiliation and teasing every day of their lives?
The classic criticism of the lottery is that the people who play are the ones who can least afford to lose; that the lottery is a sink of money, draining wealth from those who most need it. Some lottery advocates . . . have tried to defend lottery-ticket buying as a rational purchase of fantasy—paying a dollar for a day's worth of pleasant anticipation, imagining yourself as a millionaire. But consider exactly what this implies. It would mean that you're occupying your valuable brain with a fantasy whose real probability is nearly zero—a tiny line of likelihood which you, yourself, can do nothing to realize. . . . Which makes the lottery another kind of sink: a sink of emotional energy. [via]
posted by Jasper Friendly Bear on May 18, 2013 - 154 comments

The Luckiest Village In The World

It was a tiny town of farmers, a village where everyone knew everyone and nearly all struggled to make ends meet. But then, a few days before Christmas, they won the largest lottery in the history of Spain. The entire town. All of them. (Well, almost all of them.) Instantly, Sodeto became known as the luckiest place on earth. Michael Paterniti visits the town that fortune smiled upon and finds that the people there—now flush—are still uncertain of just how lucky they really are.
posted by empath on May 16, 2013 - 26 comments

We Found Hope in a Mega Millions Ticket

“This restaurant lifestyle is killing us,” Mandy said one night as we took a break from our creative endeavors to eat Walgreen’s off-brand ice cream sandwiches on our front stoop in the cool, salty night air. “Look at us. It’s two o’clock in the morning and we’re still awake. Working. Eating. Drinking shitty wine. Every night. It’s unhealthy! How can I work well if I don’t live well?” “Yeah, it’s the pits. But what can we do?” I ate my ice cream sandwich slowly, nibbling around the edges. Mandy finished her sandwich in two bites and crumpled the paper wrapper into a ball. “I’ll figure out something...”
posted by showbiz_liz on Apr 12, 2013 - 45 comments

Jack Whittaker's Powerball tragedy.

The day would come when many West Virginians recalled the story of Jack's Powerball Christmas with a shudder at the magnitude of ruination: families asunder, precious lambs six feet under, folks undone by the lure of all that easy money.
posted by Egg Shen on Nov 29, 2012 - 68 comments

The Tax on Unlucky People

Tonight's Powerball lottery drawing was for more than half a billion dollars, the 2nd largest in U.S. history. The Multi-state Lottery Association answers your frequently asked and not so frequently asked questions about the Powerball Lottery with a side of snark. Find out if you won the Powerball Jackpot.
posted by Jahaza on Nov 28, 2012 - 74 comments

Do you feel lucky, punk?

The Powerball Simulator lets you play two tickets a week for as long as you like, and keeps track of how much money you've lost at it.
posted by Pope Guilty on Aug 13, 2012 - 113 comments

How MIT students beat the lottery

Beating the system: The Boston Globe reports how a group of MIT students beat the Massachusetts state lottery by working out that you were almost guaranteed to get a return on the game Cash Win Fall at certain times, and only buying tickets at that point. It's reckoned that they made $48m on a $40m stake over several years, that other syndicates were also involved, and the state 'bent and broke' the rules by allowing them to buy tickets in bulk. The game was closed down after the Globe started to investigate. [more inside]
posted by DanCall on Aug 8, 2012 - 45 comments

Gimme the phone

Global British Columbia Sports Anchor Barry Deley wins lotto home draw, live on his own TV channel. But it turns out he's got an even more personal connection to the lottery.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Nov 3, 2011 - 78 comments

Grifters, unite!

Cash WinFall, or how to turn the lottey into a real moneymaker. In Massachusetts, one state-sponsored lottery has become a game you can't lose....if you know the trick. A tale of math, grinding and grifting in the Boston Globe.
posted by Diablevert on Jul 31, 2011 - 47 comments

So this is why I never win.

Cracking the Scratchie. With cheating and money laundering and statistics, this story seems like it should be about something more exciting than scratch-off lottery tickets. But it isn't.
posted by jacquilynne on Feb 1, 2011 - 92 comments

Amidakuji, a lottery from Japan

Amidakuji, or "Ghost Leg," is a lottery party game from Japan. At the top of a sheet there are a number of spaces for people to write their names. At the bottom there are prizes. There are an equal number of each. Between them is a map obscured behind a sheet. The map is made of straight vertical lines connecting the names and prizes. Connecting those lines at random intervals are horizontal lines. When it's time to pick winners, the sheet is removed and players can follow the lines to find their prize. You follow the line from your name down until you encounter any horizontal line, which you must follow, then continue down, continuing to follow all horizontal lines you encounter, until you reach your prize. No two horizontal lines can touch. Provided that, the process is perfectly deterministic and reversable. The same ends are reached whether you follow from the top down or the bottom up. If you have difficulty visualizing this, check the Wikipedia page. [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Dec 24, 2010 - 18 comments

The "No-Lose" Lottery

A simple idea: take an ordinary savings account, but instead of paying interest to account holders, hold a lottery to see who gets the lump sum. Freakonomics Radio investigates Prize-linked savings (PLS) accounts (Part 1, Part 2), which combine two things that seem completely at odds with each other: saving money and gambling. In Highland Park, MI, PLS accounts have been very successful at converting "non-savers" into "savers". Why hasn't it caught on in the US? It's illegal in most states, of course.
posted by Jonathan Harford on Dec 2, 2010 - 33 comments

Hoxton Street Monster Supplies

In Hoxton, there's a shop. Run by the Ministry of Stories (and funded by the National Lottery), the Hoxton Street Monster Supplies shop provides a free space to stimulate creative writing with workshops, publishing projects and one-to-one mentoring. [more inside]
posted by jim.christian on Nov 28, 2010 - 18 comments

Give and you shall receive

What would you do with $11,255,272? Violet and Allen Large gave most of it away. [more inside]
posted by Brodiggitty on Nov 4, 2010 - 46 comments

Futurama, baby

Goodwill: Monetary policy for the 21st century
Here's my proposal. We should try to arrange things so that the marginal unit of CPI is purchased with "helicopter drop" money. That is, rather than trying to fine-tune wages, asset prices, or credit, central banks should be in the business of fine tuning a rate of transfers from the bank to the public. [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Aug 19, 2010 - 20 comments

Papa needs a new appropriations bill!

Missouri is facing a state budget deficit, much like many other states. One state representative has come up with an interesting possible solution to Missouri's financial woes: the Powerball Lottery. Missouri HB 2131 would deduct $2 twice a month to purchase a Powerball ticket with any winnings being placed in "Governor Nixon's Scratch-off, Match-off Fund."
posted by borkencode on Mar 4, 2010 - 28 comments

Derren Brown: The Events

Derren Brown: The Events. On Wednesday 9th September 10:35, Derren Brown will predict the National Lottery immediately before the draw. On Friday he will reveal how it was done. As part of a four week series for Channel 4, he will be controlling the nation live, conducting a nationwide psychic experiment and finally a special on how to beat the casinos.
posted by ashaw on Sep 8, 2009 - 324 comments

Are those $100's in your wallet or are you just happy to see me?

When Money Buys Happiness. List the ten most expensive things (products, services or experiences) that you have ever paid for (including houses, cars, university degrees, marriage ceremonies, divorce settlements and taxes). Then, list the ten items that you have ever bought that gave you the most happiness. Count how many items appear on both lists. [more inside]
posted by zinfandel on Jul 2, 2009 - 82 comments

Bitchy and Scratchy

A $10.00 scratch ticket + 2 buddies = $5,000,000.00 (minus lawyer fees). Day one in court. Day two.
posted by davebush on Feb 10, 2009 - 70 comments

The children had stones already. And someone gave little Davy Hutchinson a few pebbles.

How to raise money for the Shirley Jackson Awards? Why, a Lottery, natch. The Shirley Jackson Awards, established in 2007 to reward "outstanding achievement in the literature of psychological suspense, horror and the dark fantastic" is holding an online lottery beginning today and continuing through February 23 to raise funds for the program. Participants can buy $1 digital lottery tickets for any of 51 donated prizes from authors, editors, artists, and agents. Which prize will draw the most interest? Perhaps an autographed computer keyboard from Neil Gaiman? Or the chance to be Tuckerized in an upcoming work? [Tuckerization explained] Or ... star in a porn role? [more inside]
posted by taz on Feb 9, 2009 - 32 comments

Illinois Lottery Draws 666 on Heels of Obama Victory

The day after a senator from Illinois, is elected president, the Pick 3 lottery in Illinois comes up 666. It's happened before, notably in Pennsylvania (12 times, including one time as part of a scam and once earlier this year, in Maryland. Some are jokingly (I hope) calling him the antichrist as a result. Others, namely numbers geeks like me, are spending their lunch hours looking up the history of lotteries drawing triple numbers and sharing it with MetaFilter.
posted by sjuhawk31 on Nov 6, 2008 - 70 comments

"A small statement that says a lot of things to different people."

I Love My Life The Way It Is. A collection-in-progress of unscratched scratch-off lottery tickets, the project is the brainchild of Ali Alvarez, who hopes to collect at least 8000 tickets, enough to fill a 12x12 room from floor to ceiling. Alvarez is soliciting donations of unscratched tickets from volunteers around the world, and has posted pictures of some of the ones received so far. The idea of an unscratched lottery ticket makes some people "a little crazy," but Alvarez hopes the collection will cause people to explore the ideas of "getting your hopes high, dreaming, escaping, and then usually being let down." Via.
posted by amyms on Jun 14, 2008 - 75 comments

Socially unacceptable addictions, government encouraged addictions.

When the working poor turn to addictive drugs to manage pain so they can keep working, that's "moral weakness, not a public health problem.":
Every morning before sunup, Trapp drives 120 miles.... "This methadone makes you feel like a human being again," Trapp says. With disability rates as high as 37 percent in coal-mining areas such as Buchanan County, the region has many people with long-term pain management needs. As is the case with lots of aging miners, Trapp's addiction to pills began in a doctor's office, not a back-alley drug deal.... The clinic's counseling staff members say that many patients need to be on some sort of drug to cope with severe, long-term pain and that methadone has made them functional. And for those who lack insurance or access to more personalized care, it is often the only affordable option.
[more inside] posted by orthogonality on Jan 15, 2008 - 44 comments

What level of Arcane spell is that?

You never hear about a psychic winning the lottery, but apparently witchcraft is worth a shot.
posted by Pope Guilty on Oct 30, 2007 - 27 comments

Game theory, for money

Humraz is an auction site with a twist. Pay to bid, then once enough fees have been received, the lowest unmatched bid wins. Shall we play for £500? Or a house?
posted by imperium on Jun 20, 2007 - 21 comments

We won the f*ing lottery!

We won the f*ing lottery! Ingredients: TiVo of last week's lottery run, trusting friend, friends looking to capitalize on the relationship between the two and a lottery ticket for this week's lottery to seal the deal. (Um, yes, via) WARNING: Contains video, profanity, Milli Vanilli
posted by Ogre Lawless on Dec 30, 2005 - 37 comments


Lost Numbers. I won't get to see any of the second season of Lost until summer 2006 'cause I live in Ireland. I also didn't care enough about the first season to use the "numbers" as my lottery numbers. I should have, they (almost) came up in the National Lottery on November 19. I say almost, instead of 42 it was 24 (sorry Douglas).
posted by Elmore on Dec 16, 2005 - 31 comments

Lucky Number 666

The number 666 has been drawn by the Pennsylvania Lottery 12 times. Well, legally that is. On April 24, 1980, Pittsburgh personality Nick Perry, host of local TV shows and the live lottery drawing, fixed the lottery drawings. Perry has since passed away, but the story lived on in a (badly made) film adaptation. [more inside]
posted by ALongDecember on Aug 5, 2004 - 8 comments

Va. Man Claims $239 Million Jackpot

Va. Man Claims $239 Million Jackpot Note in passing that this took place during the Bush administration! "A retired truck driver claimed a $239 million Mega Millions jackpot Thursday, calling the second-largest lottery payout in history "no big thing to me." His wife vowed to "shop till I drop.""
posted by Postroad on Apr 1, 2004 - 27 comments

The world's luckiest man?

Is he the world's unluckiest man or the luckiest? Either way, Croatia's Frane Selak, who had already gained attention for escaping death seven times, has just hit the jackpot with his first lottery ticket in forty years. How can we normal mortals compete?
posted by rory on Jun 19, 2003 - 13 comments

It's spanish lottery madness season!

It's spanish lottery madness season! No less than 1.8 billion € Cash Payout for "El Gordo", most of it won today. You didn't have any ticket? Try "El Niño 2003" on january 6th - but only 560 € millions to win. All this makes me wonder: did any fo you ever won anything substancial in a lottery? I once won some stuffed pink bunny at a highschool year end party draw - that's as far as I could go.
posted by ugly_n_sticky on Dec 22, 2002 - 10 comments

N.Y. Lottery Draws 9-1-1 on 9/11

N.Y. Lottery Draws 9-1-1 on 9/11 This is a pretty strange coincidence. Some people find coincidences everywhere. But, others say the world would be more surprising if coincidences didn't occur. Still, this is pretty odd. What coincidences have you experienced? Do you see meaning in them?
posted by popvulture on Sep 11, 2002 - 51 comments

Three Big Game winners will soon be splitting a $325 million dollar pot. Those poor people. Some studies indicate that if history is any guide, one of them will eventually go bankrupt. Still wish your numbers had come up?
posted by yhbc on Apr 17, 2002 - 43 comments

A good omen?

A good omen? Here's hoping 2002 turns out to be a better year than 2001. This seems like a good enough start.
posted by tsumo on Jan 1, 2002 - 10 comments

Lottery Madness Grips the Delusional Nation

Lottery Madness Grips the Delusional Nation
Odds of winning Powerball: 80 million to one
Odds of dying in an airplane crash: 7 million to one
Odds of being hit by lightening: 600,000 to one
Odds of perishing in a California earthquake: 600,000 to one
Odds of dying in an automobile accident: 20,000 to one

While legalized gambling may suck, at least your life is priceless?
posted by yarf on Aug 22, 2001 - 32 comments

Cha Ching!

Cha Ching! I am not a person who really support the lotto but I couldn't be happier that a poor grocery bagger won millions of dollars. What makes me even happier is they plan to give some of it back to the community.
posted by aj100 on Jun 29, 2001 - 31 comments

US Woman Killed in Malaysia

US Woman Killed in Malaysia "Police believe an American woman whose remains were recently unearthed in Malaysia was used as a human sacrifice in a ritual to obtain lottery numbers from the spirits..." The article didn't say if they won. Not that it matters.
posted by mcsweetie on Jun 26, 2001 - 8 comments

Who wants to be a...Grab.com is giving away $1 Billion

Who wants to be a...Grab.com is giving away $1 Billion Grab.com, an email marketing company announced it would give $1 Billion to the player who selects the same series of seven numbers between one and 77 that Grab.com picks at random on Dec. 28.

As the article points out, the odds of any one individual claiming the $1 billion prize are a subatomic 1 in 2,404,808,340. Compared to the chance that Berkshire Hathaway will have to cough up $1 billion this year to cover one of its natural disaster insurance policies which is something like 1 in 100.
posted by brian on Oct 9, 2000 - 17 comments

Turn ballot stubs into lottery tickets

Turn ballot stubs into lottery tickets and watch voter apathy disappear. What a great idea. Maybe financed by campaign contributions?
via Camworld via rc3.org.
posted by tremendo on Sep 1, 2000 - 12 comments

As if we needed it,

As if we needed it, another reason not to participate in the "stupidity tax" here in the States.
posted by Steven Den Beste on Aug 26, 2000 - 0 comments

I bought 3 Quick Picks for the Lottery

I bought 3 Quick Picks for the Lottery this week, thinking that if there were any balance in the universe I'd be due for a big payoff... If SuperLotto was High/Low, I'd have nailed it. I got one number. ONE. 5 number for lotto x 3 quick picks = 15 potential correct numbers. I got ONE. On the upside, I'm still due. Touch me now, I'm jam packed full of luck potentiality...
posted by CrazyUncleJoe on Mar 4, 2000 - 5 comments

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