The Powerball jackpot for tomorrow night is now estimated to be at least 1.5 billion dollars.  I’ve spent a little bit of time thinking about what I would do with my winnings.

First a little bit of lottery math.  The jackpot number is a pre-tax number, if you take it in annual installments.  I don’t want annual installments, I want it right now.  The lump sum payment will probably be about $900 million, before taxes.  After taxes, it will probably be about $600 million.

Unfortunately, that is not enough for me to purchase my favorite NFL football team.  So instead of doing that, if I won, I would give it all away.  Every penny.

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I think it would be really fun to be the first person in history to give an entire lottery jackpot away.  I would love to give some of it to the Wards, Augustines, Alberts, Lubriscianos, Friedmans, Wagers, and Hills.  It would be a lot of fun to get all of my relatives together, and thank them for everything they’ve done for me.  And then hand them manila envelopes with a check for, let’s say,  $2 million apiece.

I’d make sure that Theresa and the girls were well taken care of.  Enough to live off of the interest for the rest of their lives.  A thank you for a job well done.

Then I’d love to start a charitable foundation.  Not one of those phony-baloney things that athletes and celebrities do as a tax scam.  I mean a foundation that has no expenses, just a small group of people who think about the best way to make a difference in the lives of others with charitable funding.  I’d fund it with, let’s say, $100 million.  A foundation like that could give away at least $5 million a year, and live on forever.

—–

What would happen if someone gave away a $1.5 billion lottery?  I think people would freak out.  The internet would probably melt.  Nothing like it has ever happened.

It’s not like I really need the money.  If I want to take my sweetie out for dinner, I can.  If I want to go to an Eagles game or a Bruce Springsteen concert, I can.  None of that would change.  We have enough food in the fridge, and I have enough socks.  Darwin has more squeakie toys than any other Schnoodle.

But what I can’t do right now is to pay off everyone’s mortgage.  Or fund everyone’s college tuition.  Or start a charitable trust that can make a difference in the lives of thousands of people.

That would be a lot of fun.

Bring it on.

Hal

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