2.07.2006

NIGHT OF THE SCRATCH TICKETS

Flush with $30 in Super Bowl pool winnings, our hero ventures out into the cold, still, New York City night. He feels that familar yearning, deep within his soul.

"Tonight is the night," our hero thinks to himself. "The night when I shall win - for life!"

After a brief, determined walk, our hero arrives at Pay-o-Matic Check Cashing on 8th Avenue, just north of 14th Street.

"Hmmm," he thinks to himself. "You can get your taxes done for only $54.95? And you get an instant refund?! That sounds like a pretty good deal!"

With a heightened sense of purpose, our hero enters the establishment and marches to the teller window. He is forced to wait on line for what seems like a really long time.

"I wish there were more people here," he thinks to himself. "Cashing big checks in front of a bunch of poor people always makes me feel better about myself."

Having his bagged his prey, our hero hungrily feasts upon the unsuspecting scratch-off ticket.

But this is not just any old scratch ticket...

This is the Win for Life Spectacular. The brand new game of chance from the New York State Lottery that offers you the chance to win $10,000 a week - for life! All for only $20!

Dreaming of his new life, our hero scratches the ticket that will turn him into a millionaire. But, only moments later, his dream is dashed upon the craggy rocks of defeat.

This was not his golden ticket. And he had just wasted $20 on one scratch ticket. His epic losing streak was now bi-coastal.

"How is it possible?" our hero wonders, as he reinspects what should have been his one-way ticket to Easy Street. "I must have had the wrong place!"

Our hero runs around the corner to Sam's All-Nite Deli Smoke Shop on 14th Street. Something about Sam the Pakastani feels lucky to him.

"Perhaps Allah shall shine his love upon me," our (agnostic, but still spiritual) hero hopes.

Will removes the remaining $10 in winnings from his pocket, hands it to the chubby proprietor and becomes the proud owner of two more $5 scratch tickets.

"Ah yes," our hero laughs. "Soon I shall be The King of Cash!"

Our hero begins to scratch the first of his two tickets. His focus is so concentrated that he is oblivious to the deliciousness of the Little Debbie Snack Cakes that sit merely inches from his mouth.

The first game is completed and, once again, Lady Luck has not smiled upon our favorite son. But all is not lost!

With his back to the wall, our hero grabs his ex-girlfriend Maggie from behind the camera and gives her the second ticket.

"Listen here!" our hero screams at the top of his lungs. "Tonight - in Sam's All Night Deli Smoke Shop - this dreaded streak shall meet it's demise! The blood of this virgin shall course within my veins and I shall finally achieve victory!"

Sadly, victory was not in the cards for our hero, or his faithful companion. The demon called Losing had once again stolen the night.

"Maybe I shouldn't have lied about the virgin thing," our hero thought to himself, after it was too late.

Then Will and his ex-girlfriend went back to his apartment.

So at least the night wasn't completely unlucky.

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