I’m Not Playing The Lottery. I’m Reading Tiny Novels.


I live in the Commonwealth of Virginia. They sell Powerball here.

I buy two tickets a week.

The odds of winning the jackpot are 1 in 292,201,338.

You wanna know what’s more likely to happen?

  • Getting hit by lightning: 1 in 10,000,000
  • Becoming an astronaut: 1 in 12,000,000
  • Being killed in a terrorist attack on an airline: 1 in 25,000,000
  • Having identical quadruplets: 1 in 15,000,000
  • Being diagnosed with the plague: 1 in 46,000,000

I was an English major but I have a remedial understanding of math. So why am I throwing away my money?

I could say it’s because the money goes to Education in Virginia but I’m not entirely sure that’s true anymore and I’m too lazy to google it.

I buy it to fantasize.

Lottery tickets are microscopic novels to me.

I know that sounds crazy. Let me explain.

When I read, I get lost. It’s an escape from reality which is something I’m no fan of. Unlike movies, which I love most of all, I have to take care of the cinematography, casting, and sound. A story’s never as vibrant as when I take someone’s words and craft an imperfectly perfect interpretation in my mind. Maybe it’s because the book is closer to my brain than the movie screen? That sounds science adjacent.

Lottery tickets are just one page novels.

For just a few seconds I dream about winning and having “fuck you” money. I’d buy all the houses in a gated community an hour outside Los Angeles. I’d order everything delivered to me. I’d never drive again. I’d probably hire a gigantic body guard so no one could get close to me unless I wanted them to. Paradise. It makes me glad for a few seconds.

But of course I never win.

I’ve even resorted to telling my higher power, who I’m not even sure exists but who I’m sure doesn’t give a shit about my pipe dreams, that I’ll give most of the winnings to my son and his mom and charity and only take enough so I don’t have to work anymore for the rest of my life.  And that really shouldn’t be too long with the way I take care of myself.

The flying spaghetti monster has not accepted my generous offer, however.  Probably because:

From the Tao of Steve:

Dex: Y’know, no one ever says, “Hey, God, how was your day? What can I do for you, God?” Or, “Hey, God, did you catch Letterman last night?”

I have considered contracting the guy downstairs but the whole issue of not being sure he exists is a snag. Also, he’s not known for a square deal. I’m fairly certain he’d fuck me out of the money and still lock me away in hell. Of course, I don’t think hell exists.  But I’m way too much of a pussy and I’ve got way too much Catholic brainwashing serum floating around my soul to risk going to hell.

Though I’m pretty sure the odds of hell exisiting are better than that of winning the lottery.


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