My Preparations to Win the Powerball

Like others with no sense, I spent a few dollars on the recent Powerball lottery. Might as well get into the game to win $1.6 billion — you have to play to win, right?

With the ticket sitting in my pocket, I began to think about what I would need to do if I did win the damn thing.

Pennsylvania requires that winners disclose their identities, so I would need to do a lot in advance of actually claiming my prize, and the lottery gives me a year in which to do so.

Knowing that other winners had been beset by hordes of distant relatives, former friends, long forgotten acquaintances, money management types, real estate speculators, lawyers and all manner of people trying to catch a free ride, I knew I would have to carefully protect myself.

Phone numbers, email addresses and jobs would need to be changed. I would need to move into a secure high rise condominium, protected by armed guards from the aforementioned  hordes. A reputable firm specializing in ultra high net worth wealth management would need to be retained in order to intelligently invest the winnings, set up a family foundation, and the like.

Of course, this was just a mental exercise, rendered moot by the fact that my five tickets did not come remotely close to wining even the basic $4.00 prize, so there is definitely a lesson in that.

But now come John and Lisa Robinson, residents of Tennessee and winners of one-third of the jackpot. The first thing they did was to make an appearance on one of the morning news shows, hold a press conference, announce that they would keep their jobs and – oh, yes – hire “a lawyer and an accountant”.

Good luck to the Robinsons. I’m glad I did not win. I think they will soon wish they hadn’t.