In today’s rough economic times, the dream of winning the lottery looms large. This week, somebody’s dream came true. The lucky winner hasn’t come forward yet, but various news outlets are reporting that someone in Winner, South Dakota (yes, that’s the town’s real name), has a ticket worth $232 million. The numbers, in case you have a time machine and want a cut of the winnings, were 5, 6, 12, 16, 21, and 7 (Powerball).
News that there is a flimsy piece of paper worth close to a quarter of a billion bucks inspired a mad rush to the Search box. Though they were nowhere near as popular as the “lotto winner” queries, searches on “lottery curse” were conducted by more than a few. Indeed, there seems to be many times when someone wins millions of dollars only to suffer misfortune shortly thereafter.
An ABC article from 2007 highlights some of the more glaring incidents. A couple won $25 million and saw their marriage end just months later. In 2002, another man won millions of dollars but “his life was consumed by hardship,” including the death of his granddaughter and the end of his marriage. Most bizarrely, a 1996 lotto winner was kidnapped and killed by his sister-in-law and an accomplice.
But before you get too depressed, let’s get back to today’s news: A very lucky $232 million ticket. Queries on “powerball numbers may 27 2009,” “powerball winner,” and “powerball winnings” posted immediate gains.
Also surging among the greedy and curious: “biggest lotto win ever.” While $232 million is nothing to sneeze at, it’s far from the biggest jackpot ever. That title belongs to a $390 million jackpot from 2007. (Although, according to MegaMillions.com, that prize was shared between two winners. Sheesh, only $195 million each? Why even bother?)
Here’s hoping the winner of this recent windfall manages to do what so many past winners have tried to accomplish: Do some good while continuing to live a happy life. Oh, and don’t forget to pay your taxes.
by Mike Krumboltz