Gut Rumbles

February 22, 2006

no more baloney

I just saw the winners in the $365 million Powerball lottery jackpot. They were eight employees from a ConAgra meat processing plant in Lincoln, Nebraska. That's right--- good ole blue-collar folks. In fact, three of the eight showed up at the award ceremony after working the graveyard shift the night before.

I'm delighted to see that. I LIKE it when ordinary working stiffs win such megabucks--- over $22 million each in this case--- because it's such a by-gawd American Dream come true. A shift-worker one day and a multi-millionaire the next. Ya gotta love this country.

A few years ago, I watched some guy collect a humongous lotto payoff as he was described as a "retired real estate developer." He and his family just LOOKED rich as Midas already. I didn't know the guy, but I was disappointed that HE won. I was stunned by my reaction.

I thought, "He doesn't need the money". Bejus! That sounded like something a pissing, moaning leftist whines when he advocates a tax hike for "The Rich." The guy won, fair and square. He bought the ticket, so he deserved the prize, no matter HOW rich he was already. What the hell was I feeeeling? Did I think it wasn't FAIR??? I wanted to go wash my brain out with soap before I went totally nutzoid and started voting Democrat.

I think I suffered a brief attack of Class Envy there. I was ashamed of myself.

I didn't have that problem today, because the winners WEREN'T rich and I spent enough time pulling shiftwork in a manufacturing plant to identify with them. How sweet it must be.

Still, I wondered why I reacted that way. It's an American trait to root for the underdog, but I've got no use for government attempts at income redistribution in the name of "fairness." But I would rather see a working stiff win the lottery than some rich, retired guy. Why? Damnifiknow.

I really confuse myself sometimes.


.. did you see that guy in the sunglasses?... man, he could be my twin brother.. well, except for the rugged jawline... his, not mine...

Posted by: Eric on February 22, 2006 12:40 PM

When they started the Pick-6 lotto program in Jersey, many years ago, a rather wealthy fellow, who owned several lucrative shore hotels and properties, won the one million jackpot, as it was then. About two months later, his wife hit it and he told the local papers that winning another mil was a "headache and would cause him tax problems". I don't recall him giving it away, however.

Posted by: Gregor on February 22, 2006 12:58 PM

I always feel better when someone who really needs the money wins. It's not that I begrudge the rich guy winning, it just seems like a waste of luck and somehow I figure the guy probably won because he can afford to increase his odds by buying 100 tickets at a time or something.

I love the winners who got a couple of kids and the husband got laid off and they're about to lose their house and they win after squeezing out a buck to buy just one ticket. It just feels more like a miracle then.

Posted by: Libby on February 22, 2006 03:52 PM

if the were poor, and black, you wouldn't feel happy if they won.

does that help to clarify it?

Posted by: anon on February 22, 2006 04:05 PM

Two things, first one is that anon is a twerp and jackass.

The second is, to some extent I prefer it when someone who is used to wealth wins it, only because the money influx doesn't tend to screw up their lives like it does people who are not used to it. Remember, the majority of lotto winners are bankrupt within 5 years of takes a different mindset to handle that much money well.

Posted by: Mythilt on February 22, 2006 05:39 PM

If I won $22 million, I would be all over the headlines doing stupid shit.
I might even waste some of the money.

Posted by: Henry Blowfly on February 22, 2006 09:07 PM

I was listening to the news on the radio tonight as I was driving home. One of the winners was quoted as saying that he needed to get some sleep so he could go to work tomorrow. I thought that was one of the most impressive displays of integrity and character I have ever heard.

Posted by: Ernie G on February 22, 2006 10:55 PM


Class envy doesn't make you a leftist. Class envy is fine. What would make you a leftist is thinking your class envy was reason enough to use the zillion-pound shit hammer of government to "solve" the "problem."

Posted by: Tim Higgins on February 22, 2006 11:06 PM

A few years back, a rather well-to-do doctor's wife hit the Lotto or Mega Million here in Yankee town, USA and I remember asking myself "what the f*ck is she doing buying lottery tickets?". I got the same disgusted with myself reaction you did after thinking about it for a bit.

Funny how the mind will mess with you.

Posted by: Russ on February 23, 2006 08:39 AM

The coolest part of this is that one of the winners is named Dung.

Posted by: Cappy on February 24, 2006 03:51 AM
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