The Pennsyl-vania-LotterYyyyyyy

I hope you sang that post title to the tune of the lottery commercial. I need to share a story about my comedy of errors this morning.

First, let me assure you that I have many skills. I can help a nursing mother with an oversupply problem. I can tell if a cut needs stitches. I can flush a PICC line for a loved one. I cannot, evidently, gamble properly.

Today was Post Office Day, the day I planned to mail all the packages of gifts we bought for loved ones who live in far off places. I dread this day all year and really have to psych myself up for waiting in line among the masses who have neither tape for their boxes nor customs slips for their packages of popcorn going to Germany. So, before I crammed all the kids in the van, I made sure I had everything I needed for all my outings. Because who wants to go back out into the madness, right? I had a pretty long checklist of things I needed, which did not include PURSE.

After the post office, I planned to stop in and buy some scratch off lottery tickets for our mail carrier and the crossing guard and the lunch lady at school. Sounds easy enough, right? I didn’t get around to it last year, but I know I bought them from a machine somewhere the year before…

To my surprise, the post office had 3 people working and I only waited in line 18 minutes. I then went to the grocery store, where I learned you can’t use a credit card to buy lottery tickets from the machine. Error number one!

I drove home and grabbed some cash from our babysitter box of cash. Not my purse or debit card, mind you. Just a wad of cash.

I went back to the grocery store and waited my turn again for the lottery machine. How hard could it be to buy scratch tickets, right? I had cash! And so I slid the cash in the machine and clicked to buy 25 Stocking Stuffers, which sounded to me like scratch tickets.

Only it wasn’t scratch tickets. I bought 25 actual lottery tickets, which started spewing out of the machine one at a time while I laughed and laughed at myself. I have to take these tickets home and watch the news tonight and see if my numbers get drawn, because I’ve got 25…like actual lottery tickets. My sister, when I called her to make fun of myself, says maybe I bought Power Ball tickets. I don’t even know. I don’t know the terms for lottery tickets.

So, out of cash and getting frustrated, I drove home AGAIN and got my purse. Keep in mind that each time I go home, I’m parallel parking a minivan on a crowded city street where I’ve saved my space using a pair of recycling bins.

Too ashamed to show my face again at the grocery store, I went to Walgreens. Only Walgreens as a chain has opted not to sell lottery tickets. I did make use of their ATM at least, and bought some butter while I was there.

Back in the van again, laughing at myself until tears rolled down my face, I asked my sister what to do and she said I have to go to a gas station to buy scratch tickets. She knows these things because her husband plays the lottery! Apparently every morning, he gets a banana and coffee and lottery tickets. Who knew?

Inside the gas station, I presented my pile of useless not-scratch-cards, and told the clerk I have no idea what I’m doing and I just want to buy some scratch tickets for the mailman and the crossing guard. He promised he was going to help me and showed me how to use some sort of bar code reader on the wall to check my pile of not-Power-Ball tickets. When all was said and done, I won $4 from the heap of tickets. “See,” he said. “You’re only $21 in the hole now!”

He helped me pick out some scratch tickets and told me it would be ok. That he expected to see me in line the next morning with all his regulars playing my numbers.

All I can hope is that the damn crossing guard (or maybe the lunch lady!) wins $2,500. I share this story primarily to reference for next year when I can’t remember how one goes about buying scratch tickets.

This entry was posted on Monday, December 18th, 2017 at 1:34 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


One Response to “The Pennsyl-vania-LotterYyyyyyy”

  1. Angie Says:

    Of course I sang the title! I may live in Huntington Beach, but I’m a Pittsburgh girl at heart. I hope they appreciated the scratch-offs! Which, oddly enough, no one on the West coast refers to them as such; people have no idea what I’m talking about when I say that at the Vons or gas stations. They say “instant lotto”…how boring.

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