Justifications and Sour Grapes of Lottery Losers

Mark Gordon Brown By Mark Gordon Brown, 31st Oct 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/fm_9ahyp/
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Columns & Opinions

When lottery jackpots get big and are won by other people it is funny the things that the losers will say. Here are my thoughts on the lottery, winners, and losers.

If I Did Not Win...

A few years ago the Lotto 649 in Canada reached a jackpot of 49 Million dollars. Many people paid their $2 to $3 for a chance at winning this jackpot. My wife and I purchased a total of 4 tickers for this particular draw. We did not win. However the sole winning ticket was purchased to the north of us in Edmonton, Alberta. Like many in Alberta I was anxious to see who had won this huge jackpot. Huge, by Canadian standards.

While checking my yahoo email I saw a news feed about the ticket being purchased in Edmonton and clicked on the link. The news article was very sparse but there was a comments section on the web page. In this comments section I found so much veiled sour grapes. I admit that I was disappointed that my wife and I did not win this jackpot.

Apart from being curious if someone I knew won I could care less who had won this jackpot. However, when looking at the comments that some of these lottery losers were making on this web page it seemed there were many people who had a very unhealthy concern as to the winner of this jackpot. The next few headings are taken directly from peoples comments on that web page.

“I Hope it is Someone Who Needs It”

At first glance a statement in regards to winning the lottery such as “I hope it is someone who needs it.” may sound noble. However, when examined further it is really a judgment. A judgment based on subjective criteria. The idea of what constitutes a need is something that means different things for different people. As an artist, I have a need to create that does not fall into the hierarchy of needs that Maslow suggested. Some people would say that is not a real need. I would suggest that playing the lottery is not a real need for anyone.

Winning the lottery is fulfilling a dream, rather than a need, in the way the word need is being used in statements like “I hope it is someone who needs it”. When people make these statements what is really being said is “I hope that the winner was not someone who has more money than me.”. If it all comes down to the prize money going to those with the most financial need, then people would be saying things like “that person does not have enough money to buy food for their kids, but they can buy a lottery ticket.”... Does that statement sound familiar?

“The Lottery Should Never Get That Big”

The idea that there should be caps on the lottery as to how big it gets was also thrown around on this web page. Various people saying that the prize should have been divided into all manner of lower amounts so that more people could win. The lottery game in question is Canadian Lotto 649 that starts at between 3.5 and 4 Million and if no one wins the jackpot grows like many other lotteries.

Many people do not even purchase tickets until the jackpot gets to a larger amount and there are plenty of smaller prize payout games throughout Canada. In light of these facts the notion that the government should set limits to the size of jackpot so that more people can win is ridiculous and ludicrous. Many of the people I know personally who make “the lottery should never get that big” statements after not winning the huge jackpot, beforehand where saying “it's all mine, I have the winning ticket.” Based on that experience I can be safe in saying that those making such statements online are saying so out of sour grapes. The same people would not be suggesting limits had they won the $49 Million Jackpot.

“I Hope a Group Won”

Each and every time the lottery gets huge and there is a winning ticket waiting to be claimed I hear at least one person saying “ I hope a large group of people win it.”. I hear this from people who bought their private tickets the day before saying things like “I got the winning ticket right here.” My feeling is that people feel if they did not win the huge jackpot themselves, they do not want some other person to be that lucky as an individual, or even family.

I feel that somehow their jealousy of not winning the huge jackpot is eased by the jackpot being diluted into smaller amount that would be merely helpful to the winners, but not necessarily life changing. I suggest that most people play lotteries in hopes of having their lives changed for the better in a big way. The only way I can see the statement of “I hope a group won” as being sincere is if that statement was made by a person that ONLY plays the lottery in a group.

The Winners of The $49-Million 6-49

The winners of the particular news story that inspired this article were in fact a group of 13 people in Edmonton who worked at ATB (the Alberta Treasury Branch, a bank). I will be honest and say that I wish my wife and I had won instead of them.

Anyone who played lotto 649 on that particular draw and says they are completely happy that these other people won needs to take an honesty check with in themselves. However, I can be happy as a human being for the good fortune of these other human beings. I can wish them congratulations and hope they use the money to fulfill THEIR dreams and not the whims of every joker that comes along looking for a way to get at their winnings.

I Play the Lottery

I play the lottery so I can make my dreams come true, it is not about "need" it is about dreams! I do plan on doing some charitable work with my potential winnings but I also want to have fun! I have a job to satisfy my needs the lottery is to satisfy my dreams!

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Edmonton Lottery Winners, Group Wins, How Much Is The Lottery, Jackpot Winner, Who Won, Winner Of Lottery, Winners Of The Lottery

Meet the author

author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
Raised in Michigan, I have a son who recently joined the Military. I am living in Canada with my wife where we have a hobby farm.

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author avatar Nancy Czerwinski
31st Oct 2015 (#)

Mark, I love the way you presented this article. I think I would love to win the lottery to follow my dreams but I would also like to find a way to help people that really need help. Maybe someday our wishes and dreams will come true.

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author avatar brendamarie
1st Nov 2015 (#)

Mark, great article. I don't play the lottery but it would be nice to see someone who really needed the money win.

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author avatar Tony Barnes
1st Nov 2015 (#)

My son and I bought a few lines last year when the super lotto reached $650 million. Well, I work the Army AW2 program...but, I told the people in my building if I won I would be AW Who? :-) I had fun surfing on www.aboardtheworld.com and dreaming of buying a condo on that uber luxury ship.

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author avatar Fern Mc Costigan
2nd Nov 2015 (#)

Interesting Post!

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
2nd Nov 2015 (#)

Mark, I have been predicting the lottery and we change out numbers every month. I have won many times, between free plays and about $100, but never the jackpot, the closest I came to that was 2 weeks. 2 weeks after we had changed our numbers the prior set came up (all 6 of them) but that is life for you.

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author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
2nd Nov 2015 (#)

Wow Peter that would have been heartbreaking, but you just have to accept it. Shucks

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author avatar Retired
2nd Nov 2015 (#)

I guess people get their hopes up and when those hopes die, they can't deal with it. I can understand that, especially if they came really close to winning...

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
3rd Nov 2015 (#)

Thanks Mark for being frank and resonating most thoughts.

I play the lottery occasionally. One of my friends is a gem of a couple but in dire straits financially. The only way my help can make a mark is by sharing a big win with them. I do not quantify how much I will share any winnings but then I want to test myself if it happens!

Frankly if I win I want to part with a substantial sum for charity to mitigate bad karma for snatching from beggar bowls, shattering some dreams! siva

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author avatar Carol Roach
5th Nov 2015 (#)

I don't see anything wrong with these comments, I think each one of them have valid points. As Freud said, "sometimes a cigar is just a cigar."
No as a counseling psychologist yes creation fit very well in Maslow's hierarchy of needs, creating is under the social need and at a much higher need for self actualization.

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author avatar RondaKay
23rd Nov 2015 (#)

Nice article. I have to way, I have never really paid attention to what others say when someone wins the lottery. I've always just wished it was me, lol. Of course, I've have to play to win and I rarely do. But great article!!

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author avatar spirited
1st Dec 2015 (#)

I've also made most of those comments myself at times.

We copy others comments without thinking too much about them sometimes too, I guess.

I enter not because of a dream or a need, I just enter because my wife wants to enter, otherwise, I wouldn't be bothered with it, but hypocrite that I am, if we win, I am/would be, happy to share in the prize pool!!

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author avatar vellur
11th Dec 2015 (#)

Taking this opportunity to wish you a Happy New Year before this site goes offline. Great reading your posts.

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author avatar Tranquilpen
6th Jan 2016 (#)

All the best to the loyal wikinutters in 2016. Here is $25 real cash for you all, seriously! http://bit.ly/1YX25Iz

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author avatar SaigonDeManila
18th May 2016 (#)

Now am wonderng if you won a lottery and abandoned this site already hahaha! Write back and send us postcards pls!

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