A Day in the Life of a Scratch-Off Ticket Purchase

8:33 a.m.
Let me see, I want three of the number 4'-no, make that four of the number 3'-five Gold Diggers, five Treasure Islands, and five-no, four-of the Cash Insanity. Wait, the Treasure Islands are the number 4'? I'm totally confused. Did you ever think how simple everything would be if you organized the ticket rolls by just one number instead of twenty-seven? Let me start over, here"¦

10:26 a.m.
"¦how about tickets with some sort of theme, like famous salesmen? That was a test, actually. I'm glad you don't have any because that' a concept I'm developing. I also recently contacted the Lottery Commission with another idea I had that involves oysters. You scratch off three oysters, and if there' a pearl under one of them, you win. The best part is the name-Clams. On the street, "clams" is the slang term for both money and oysters. But my favorite project is something I call SuperScratch: It' eighteen feet long, and you have to scrape it off with a lawn mower. Oh, then there'"¦

1:17 p.m.
"¦everyone agreed that I looked just like Ricardo Montalban. Anyway, one time I played the Lotto and got three out of seven numbers; a dozen tickets later, I had the other four and sent the tickets in. They told me that lottery tickets weren't cumulative. They said a courier chimpanzee was more likely to hand deliver a lightning bolt to my home than I was to win the jackpot. Scratch-offs are much more of a sure thing. They're more fun, too. They're just like rides, except they don't move, and I cash my entire disability check to purchase them. Sorry, where was I? I'll take"¦

2:40 p.m.
"¦try paying for those with some winning tickets I already scratched off. This one' folded, but still good. This one' from 1987, and this one here is from out of state. This one' got just a few bite marks. Here' a $5,000 winner, but it' a bit hard to make out because I left it in a beaker of acid overnight. Now this one"¦

3:59 p.m.
"¦less of a scratch-off ticket than a phone bill I stole from my neighbor' mailbox. And this one might not look familiar because it' a sheet of fabric softener onto which I've drawn three money bags and written the word kajillionaire. It' also from out of state. Oh look, I just found five hundred tickets in my shirt pocket that I haven't even scraped off yet! Well, while I'm at the register, I might as well. I don't know why that guy behind me in line was complaining so much: If you don't want your ice cream to melt, you don't take it out of the freezer"¦

6:02 p.m.
"¦provoke the octopus. Anyway, I forgot to mention that I have to scratch my tickets with a very rare quarter that' got George Washington on the tails side and the eagle on the heads side. I left mine at home. No, all yours are totally different. Let me just call my wife to come bring it over"¦

8:33 p.m.
"¦and don't worry, I'm not about to give you my disability check to pay for scratch-off tickets. I'm about to give you an IOU for my disability check. I promise to bring it in tomorrow.

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