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Vail Daily column: What the lottery teaches

Don Rogers
My View
Don Rogers
Laura Mahaffy/lmahaffy@theunion.com | The Union

Oh those saintly lottery winners. Gonna keep going to work, giving to their church, stay in their modest middle-class digs in the ol’ familiar neighborhood, stay with familiar things.

Maybe buy a pony for the adult daughter who always wanted one but couldn’t afford the extravagance all these years.

Give me a break!

Not me. Oh no. The boss is getting a call just before I turn in my numbers, and he ain’t gonna like it. Oh, or maybe he’s been hoping for this moment as much as I have. Hmmm, hadn’t thought about that.

The house is toast. We’re done. Moving out or fixing the crap out of our s… shack. We can decide after we’ve picked up the next place, ski in and out for sure, or maybe on a gorgeous beach. What the heck, no need to choose between. We’ll just get both.

Why anyone should worry about all the ticks out there hoping for a bloody feast by convincing winners to invest in kooky schemes, well, I can’t imagine. I’m not answering the phone, email, accepting lunch dates, dinner dates, trips, nuthin’. That’s the easiest part of beating twice the chances of being struck by lightning for the big jackpot.

What am I doing? No idea after that call. Go out to dinner, talk it over. Sleep in the next day and maybe the next. Go snowboarding, play hoops, work out. Do what I always do with new twists and turns in life: draw up a list, make a plan, bounce it off my loved ones. Make another list. Start crossing stuff off I couldn’t before, along with plenty of line items that don’t change with dollars.

Buy a new truck, my version of the hot red sports car. A new snowboard. A new mountain bike. Sailboat! Backpack, sleeping bag, solar charger. Something for Mom, for Dad, for the in-laws, sister. New laptop. That should do it for now. Oh, running shoes. Basketball shoes. OK, make some more significant contributions to a few nonprofits I’ve been involved with. How about season tickets for the Broncos, the Steelers, the Dodgers, Yankees, Lakers, Cavaliers, Knicks? And we’ll need apartments in each town, of course. And ski trips. Don’t forget the ski trips. We’ll follow the snow like big wave surfers track the best breaks in real time. Maybe a private plane.

Think I’m done. Oh, wait. Did I forget the kids? No, they’re sharing in the winnings. They hit the jackpot, too, as it turns out. We’ll make up for all our lackings as parents in one fell swoop. Excellent. Maybe the stinkers will spend more time with us.

We learn something about ourselves with these little lottery fantasies, don’t we? That’s alone worth the $2 or $3 for a ticket. Spending the millions you don’t have but might!

Where would you live? What would you do with your days? Where would you travel? Would you travel? How much of a giver are you? How greedy for more? How much of an imagination do you have? How happy are you with your life now?

What would you change? What would you keep the same?

Maybe all this is worth writing down now.

I mean, our chances are slim to none, but they aren’t zero. You never know.

What a great opportunity to match your wildest dreams to your reality. You don’t have to win to change a whole bunch of them, you know. Make the list. See what’s truly important, and what you might work on crossing off now.

Besides, you could indeed be that lucky one. Best be prepared, right?

Publisher Don Rogers can be reached at drogers@vaildaily.com and 970-748-2920.


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