Tuesday, 5 February 2013

It's All Relative

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It's been a good week-end for my gambling friends: those that take a mild flutter once a year 'at the races'.  Actually, no-one goes to the racecourse any more - it's become too expensive, but at the library the staff had a modest sweepstake and my friend, M, and her husband went to the local casino and did their betting there.  The chief librarian was thrilled to win their sweep - about R40 (which would buy perhaps 3 cups of coffee here). She immediately offered to buy a cake for the staff with her bounty.  My friend and her husband had a really good day;  they took two trifectors at a cost of R48 each - my friend fancying a real outsider to win - and guess what, it did!  They scored a terrific R10 000 between themThis would buy for example, a return plane ticket to England from Cape Town at today's money value. We don't gamble any more in our old age, finding better ways to spend our spare cash but more because my husband says I stand behind him radiating bad vibes at the casino so that he always loses. True.  I heard another good luck story at the library today: my colleague's sister ten years ago bought a packet of tea and found a gold coin inside and won R50,000 from Five Roses. A lot of money then - it would have bought a small car. (I'm glad to know that not all these prizes are a scam).  She was allocated a personal shopper and taken to the local mall to spend her money. She bought a computer and office equipment for her husband and other stuff,  including ten packs of high-quality towels for her work colleagues. When only R300 remained the personal shopper insisted she buy something for herself. At work the next day, one of the staff was overheard to say, "she wins all that money and we only get some towels".


  1. We have our lotteries here. I will have a life time winnings of somewhere around $24 grand! Not bad huh? What is my secret? Not playing. If I did play, I would play only for $1.00 a day. It vastly improves your chances of winning over not playing. Any more than $1.00 results in an infinitesimal improvement in your odds. So I think there may be some rationale for playing 1 buck a day. But for someone to win millions, million have to lose so for most of the time I am going to lose and the odds state that I almost guaranteed to hit for less than the money I put in. So by not playing in a game I am guaranteed to lose, I have won a buck a day. But wait the closest place I can buy a lottery ticket is 4 miles from my home. So I save 8 miles a day. What does cost in time. I would venture 15 minutes to, 5 minutes to park & buy the ticket, 15 minutes home. 35 minutes a day. So lets just make that 30 minutes. Thats 182,5 hours a year, compounded over 60 years of buying lottery tickets is 1.25 years that I added to my productive life. But wait if you think about that 8 miles a day at let's say $3.00 gallon life time average price of fuel. I have now saved $26 grand in life time fuel costs. So I am up to 50 grand and added an extra 1.25 years to my productive life. If we consider a life time average wage of $20 an hour that is 219 grand. So by not playing the lottery, I figure I have won $279,000. Not bad for sitting my ass.

    1. You must be feeling very wealthy at this precise moment.

    2. Yeah I am just rolling in cash!