Friday, March 24, 2006

A Rash of Good Luck

That's what you get when you cross poison ivy with a four-leaf clover: a rash of good luck.
Over the past year I have watched my son struggle with the vagaries of winning prizes. Sometimes it's about how many times you can enter to win. Other times it's about how many tubs of frozen cookie dough that have to be sold to get past the "battery-operated fan level. The most confounding element is still that of chance - the idea that dozens or hundreds or thousands of other kids have the same hope of taking home the big prize. It's hard to watch when he looks at the numbers on his ticket and realizes that they don't match the ones that were just announced.
It's not that he doesn't understand the math. He gets the numbers part just fine, but when it's time to pick that winning ticket, he just can't imagine why the fickle finger of fate doesn't end up pointing at him. Maybe I'm to blame. I don't play the lottery, since the dollar for a ticket seems like an expensive way to find out that behind all those little wax numbers that you scratch off with a quarter (now we're up to a dollar and a quarter, since who wants to use a soiled quarter ever again?). I know that there are plenty of people who win buckets of money for the rest of their lives by purchasing just one ticket. I know that there are people who buy a ticket once a week "just for fun." I wonder what sort of lives these people lead, if this constitutes "fun."
Last week was a good one for our family. My son won coupons for three free ice cream bars at his school's talent show, and I won a Barnes and Noble gift certificate at my school's family reading night. I wonder if the Lotto machine is still broken at the Safeway up the street...

1 comment:

mrs. id said...

And not to mention the generosity of friends....! (But that's what subtext is for, right?)