Monday, December 5, 2011
Give the Gift of Nothing (If you're lucky!)
I'm quite thankful that I've never known anyone who would appreciate getting lottery tickets as a Christmas present. It seems to me that the only difference between giving a regular lottery player a handful of scratch tickets as a holiday present and giving a raging alcoholic a case of Heineken is that the alcoholic might at least have some friends over to share the gift. This is just so wrong, on so many levels.
Besides, as Norm MacDonald explained in an old stand-up bit, no one who gives lottery tickets as gifts could possibly want the recipient to actually WIN anything. Just think about it for a minute- you spend ten bucks on scratch-offs because you can't think of anything else to give your mail carrier. Next thing you know, your mail carrier is standing in a tv studio holding a novelty check for $45 million- and is now your FORMER mail carrier, heading off to Bermuda for a few weeks in the sun to consider how he's going to spend the rest of the dough you unwittingly handed him. What a nightmare!
So the people who give these things are either feeding a sad addiction, or playing a cruel, cynical game of Let's Feed False Hopes, And I'm Really, Really Hoping they ARE False. The best the giver can hope for is that the recipient has a few moments of "fun" scratching numbers before the flimsy pieces of cardboard end up at the bottom of a trash can. Happy Holidays to you too, Pennsylvania Lottery.