Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A Social Experiment?.......

Well it may not be a social experiment but is an experiment none-the-less. Having never been a regular lottery player (either drawings or scratch-offs) I have often wondered about the allure of the lottery. Sure, just like you I have seen the stories of people winning multiples of millions of dollars only to fritter their money away on hookers, various addictions, and dubious businesses and investments. While that has always sounded like a ton of fun to me I am more interested in why people play the lottery to begin with. The odds are long and the payback to investment is minuscule; so what gives? Not wanting to fry my egg with an overabundance of thought into the subject I have arbitrarily decided to play the lottery religiously for one year.

Being in Texas I have access to what I am dubbing the "Big 3"; Texas Lotto, Mega Millions, and Powerball. These three games offer the biggest prizes and the longest odds. I will be playing all three games each week. This amounts to six drawings a week as all games have drawings twice a week (Mega Millions - Tuesdays and Fridays, Lotto Texas and Powerball - Wednesdays and Saturdays). The weekly investment will be $12. This will total $624 for the entire year. I will keep track of money played (invested) and any winnings (return on investment). For those curious I will be playing the cash option. Screw the annual annuity!!

Since I don't want to break the bank I will play two sets of numbers for each drawing. One set of numbers will be my "permanent" numbers. The other set will be assigned randomly (Quick Pick). I will use the permanent numbers for every drawing the next year. Quick Pick numbers will be used for both drawings during a given week. This will allow me to keep my sanity in check by only having to purchase game numbers once a week. Also I have been told that one play off a single drawing has about the same odds as a hundred plays (both odds blow). So, without further ado let's jump in........

First up is Mega Millions. Drawings are Tuesdays and Fridays.

Est. Cash Value: $42,500,000
Permanent Numbers: 06, 12, 13, 39, 45 Mega Ball: 22
Quick Pick Numbers: 12, 17, 19, 47, 54 Mega Ball: 40
Money Played: $2
Money Won: $0 (first drawing and all, you know)

Wish me luck!

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