101 in 1001 #95: Buy a lottery ticket.

Okay, okay...first off, I know the odds of ever winning the lottery are NEVER in your favor. Not even when the Powerball skyrockets to $450 million. Still, this dreamer had to take her shot...which is why I found myself signing a contract last Tuesday to enter into my department's Powerball pool. 

That's right, folks. My risk-averse insurance company accounting and finance department went in on a lottery pool and signed a contract and everything. I must say, it made it all feel really official, and totally put stars in my eyes just because it seemed so well-planned. Our pool of ten used this contract, and deputized a leader to go pick up the tickets. 

As a total pragmatist when it comes to this sort of thing, I've never purchased lottery tickets. I learned a lot about the process and nuances of the lottery last week, though! We opted for the basic ticket, without a Power Play option (which is essentially a drawn multiplier of your winnings, if you do win). Our contract specified that we would equally divide any winnings; others I'd seen can specify that winnings below a certain threshold go back into a communal pool to be used to buy future tickets. Our plan would have been to take the lump sum payout, which after federal and state taxes would have amounted to about $15 million apiece. 

There you have'em! Our numbers didn't turn out to be lucky, but with a 1 in 175 million chance of winning, I can't say I was realistically hoping for a win. That said...we did all spend more than a little time dreaming and researching. Jim, one of the finance directors, found this fun factoid: If you drive more than 2 miles from your home or workplace to purchase a lottery ticket, the odds of you killing someone or being killed in a car accident en route are HIGHER than your odds of winning the lottery. Reassuring, huh? Enough to make me a lifelong pedestrian...ha! Until I read this list...which details how much more likely you are to die as a pedestrian, be a movie star, get struck by lightning, or sink a hole-in-one. Can't help but laugh. 

Just because, though...if I had beaten those odds and won my $15 million portion of the payout...I'd go to a half-time equivalent at work (no more 40-hour weeks here!), buy a timeshare in a private jet, and think about purchasing this house (the Dream Home Kelsie and I fell in love with last fall!): 

Pretty nice pipe dream, huh? To check out the rest of my (more realistic) 101 in 1001, head here