We've got a bad case of Powerball fever

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

At long last, the coffee shop conversation has shifted away from politics.

For now at least, Trump and Hillary's names are unspoken.

And there are 1.3 billion reasons for this shifting dialogue.

If you don't have lottery fever by now, you must be hibernating. There's no other excuse.

We mere mortals have difficulty wrapping our heads around $1.3 billion.

Shop until you drop - literally - and you probably still haven't made a dent in your bank account.

Buy the Brooklyn Bridge - petty cash. Trip around the world - pocket change.

But the one true side effect of the mind-boggling Powerball is its ability to make dreams.

There may be only one winner but there are countless hours spent dreaming of how to spend this massive fortune.

I've been chuckling since Saturday's drawing, reading and listening to the ways the world would "share" these newfound riches.

We are certainly a charitable crowd in our dreams.

Granted, the odds of picking the right combination of numbers is pretty far-fetched. Like finding a needle not in a haystack but in a hay field.

But dreams cost just $2 this week.

I'm bemused by those who loudly declare that winning would not change them and they would return to work the following day. I strongly suspect that once the numbers are called, they would adjust their thinking.

If the prospect of winning a $1.3 billion jackpot takes our minds away from Benghazi, email servers and Trump's rambling rhetoric, then in some ways, we're all winners.

Rest assured, the number of people watching the State of the Union address pales in comparison to those scrambling for the winning number combination come Wednesday night.

And maybe, too, that says something about us.

Though I have a ticket in hand, I'm going to go out on a limb and predict that my numbers will not be called come Wednesday.

But when the dust settles, I certainly hope the winner is someone who will spend wisely, who will recognize the need for helping others and who will improve the lives of countless charities.

There's a not-so-famous line in a long-forgotten comedy where the dumb guy asks the pretty girl what the odds are of them getting together. One in a million, she says.

"So what you're saying is, I have a chance?" he replies.

The odds come Wednesday night aren't quite as good as one in a million.

But we have a chance!

Keep dreaming.

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