I have an announcemnt. I have had a major win at the Lotto.
I won $ 27.50.
In case you do not think this to be of great import, you must consider that the ticket was a present for which I paid nothing and the Lotto agent paid out on the spot – so I now possess $ 27.50 that I did not possess before. And I had 30 seconds during which I owned the world.
The thirty seconds was the time it took the machinery at the newsagent to go from an on-screen announcement that ” You Have A Winner! ” to actually telling me how much it was. In that half a minute I had riches beyond the dreams of avarice to play with. I am glad to say that I neither fainted nor relieved myself and can enter the newsagency without shame in the future.
Makes you think, though, about what you really would do if the decimal point had not stopped early. We’re about to have a big-ola Lotto draw tomorrow and there is death money in the offing for some people. Time to think what one might need to do if you won – to avoid a sad fate.
Big-ola money is anything over the price of a used Hyundai – people do not perceive you as a mark for admiration, envy, or robbery if all you got was $ 5000. Even your own family would allow you to be happy if you won $ 5000, though they would expect a small slice. It’s when you get bigger money that the eyes in the jungle start glowing and the teeth start flashing. Let’s see if we can quantify it. Note: this is Australian Lotto – not the US or UK.
$ 5000 – family gets some presents – no reaction from the in-laws
$10,000 – family gets better presents – in-laws ring you up and want to come round and drink your health in your liquor. They want about $ 1000 off you.
$ 100,000 – family gets restive – they want a trip as well as presents – in-laws get quite snarky if you do not give them about $ 10,000. Old grudges are dug up and you find that you are the villain of any number of pieces. And the funny thing is…you are the villain whether you give them money or withhold it. The fact that it exists as a separate thing from their wallet is the sin, and whoever is associated with that separation is a sinner.
$ 1,000,000 – you need to consider buying all the immediate family a car. Cars buy off a lot of pressure. The in-laws will now fawn on you, as they can sense a bigger treasure somewhere closer to them than before. Even if they cannot quite think how to get at it, they will want to stay close to it, so the hostility they expressed at the $ 100,000 mark disappears.
$ 3,000,000 – now the family puts pressure for new housing – and big housing at that. The in-laws can be faced down. With that kind of money you need never see them again, and they know it.
$ 5,000,000 – in your own control this is enough to ensure that you need never listen to a sound that you dislike, nor see a sight that offends you. Try to be pleasant about it all, but you can afford to walk away from anything at any time.
$ 10,000,000 – Death ground. Danger from family, friends, strangers, and in-laws. If you are seen to be standing between greed and this much money you will need to fight like a demon for your safety.
The real secret in all this is not to use the automatic machine at the newsagency to check your tickets. Do it yourself via the newspaper or website or some other anonymous means. If you use the newsagency machine your win is instantly trumpeted to all and sundry and attracts trouble like syrup attracts flies.
Should you hit upon one of the big ones through the vagaries of fate and mathematics, go yourself to the head offices of the Lotteries Commission and conduct all negotiations in private. Insist upon as much privacy as possible – do not become a media target. If necessary, have a solicitor or banker conduct negotiations as they can be legally forced to silence.
Money in hand, consider carefully who ever gets to know. Should you wish to purchase the love and fealty of your family, in-laws, friends, or general public, consider that any time you exchange money for it they do not give receipts and if they eventually cheat you of what you thought you bought…you cannot sue them for it.