What are the Odds?

Like millions of people, I like to play the lottery. I don’t have a system and I don’t delude myself into thinking that if I just stick with it and buy my ticket every week, I’ll win. I am well aware that it’s more or less a suckers bet. Hell, you have a better chance of being hit by a car and killed crossing the street to buy a ticket than to win with said ticket.

I’ve had marginal luck with the lottery so far. $20 here, free ticket there. I’m not complaining. The cost of $6 a week isn’t that much. That’s only $24 a month. $252 a year. That’s really not a lot of cash for the slim chance to win millions of dollars.

Some people like to point out the odds to me but I simply counter that the odds of winning the lottery are infinitely higher if you actually buy a ticket than if you don’t. It’s a mere pittance even on my low income.

So why am I talking about this?

Isn’t it obvious?

I don’t want to rub it in but, after checking my lottery ticket then checking it again and then again, just to be sure y’know, I ALMOST won the lottery. I was one number off on almost every digit with the highest difference being three. It’s probably the closest I will ever come to winning the lottery.

Ain’t that a kick in the pants?

Lotto

Tick Tock, Clock.

Time is a funny thing. Not ha-ha funny but a strange funny. When you’re a kid, time seems to last forever. Tomorrow takes an eternity to get here and forget about waiting for birthdays and Christmas. They just can’t seem to get here fast enough.

I wonder if that’s because they don’t have much to base time off of. You’re seven years old. So the amount of time you’ve been on this planet isn’t very long, comparitively speaking. Then, when you reach your teenage years, time seems to move faster because you already have over a decade under your belt. That’s a lot longer than a year.

Finally, you reach your twenties and now you have two decades. Years seem to fly by and suddenly it’s Christmas again. Dammit, I’m still paying off the last one!

That’s when I noticed the change in time, but then something weird happened. Everything seemed to stop for me. The years became a blur but seemed to go nowhere at the same time. A strange paradox to experience. Nothing seemed to change except for the calendar and occasionally my living arrangements and my job. Other than that, everything was the status quo. My friends were still my friends. The same TV shows were on that were on last year. The same video games were being pumped out year after year. It seemed stagnant.

Lately though, I’ve noticed the moving of time again. How much things chance in such a short amount of time. I attribute that to being around kids again. Over the past year, I have had the joy and headaches of being step-father to two children who are now literally growing up before my eyes. I can actually notice them getting bigger and developing in front of me. I think back to where I was seven years ago and realize that my step-son wasn’t even alive at that point. It’s a strange sobering thought after 13 years of temporal limbo.

Not that I’m complaining mind you. It’s nice to realize that things are actually liquid rather than written in stone.

Stuck in the Middle

It’s been six years since I played Final Fantasy X, so I decided to throw it in for old times sake. Now, after over 12 hours of playtime, I find myself stuck at the exact same part that I was when I first played it all those yars ago.

It’s not a boss fight or a challenging puzzle. Nothing like that at all. I still make a little bit of progress everytime I play. However, everytime I reach a savepoint, I find myself Blitzball mode. For those who aren’t in the know, Blitzball is the mini-game they added to the game with no real purpose other than kill more time. It’s like rugby mixed with waterpolo.

And it’s addicting! I don’t know why either. It’s fun, but not in an all encompassing way. It’s not particulaly quick, with each match being roughly 15 minutes to play. Yet, I find myself playing it everytime I switch my game on.

The last time I got stuck in this loop, I’d played Blitzball everyday for two weeks, making absolutely no headway in the story. This time, it might even be longer, given how little game time I get these days.

Eventually, the novelty of it will wear off and I can continue on with the storyline. I can only wonder how many hours will be consumed by the silly game.

I guess that makes me a fool for Blitzball as well.

O, Treacherous Hair

I have ridiculously long hair for a guy. I noticed this coming out of the shower the other day and catching my reflection in the mirror. It goes past my shoulder blades when it’s heavy and wet. And thick. So very thick.

Thus, with long hair, comes the hazards of it. Nevermind the fact that it gets caught on things like buttons and zippers when I’m putting clothing on. Those are minor nuisances, at best. Or worst, depending on how you look at it.

Last night at work, during our smoke break, it was a particularly windy night. As I was taking a puff, a rather mischeivous gust tossed my lockes into my face. An angry hiss later and I found a few burnt strands on the end of my smoke. Then the stench of burnt hair accosted my nose, making me want to sneeze. I couldn’t even escape it since it was in my face.

It’s not the first time that I’ve experienced a fiery trim, but certainly one of the worst.

Still that doesn’t compare to the time my hair tried to kill me. No joke. My hair tried to straight up kill me one day.

One morning, I woke up to the surprising sensation of something down my throat. Sitting up quickly, I coughed and gagged out my own hair which had, in my slumbers, managed to sneak its way into my mouth and down my throat. Probably the closest I have ever come to receiving a Darwin Award. At the very least, it would deserve a nomination.

Still, its my choice and I still have my thick fur toque on my head. Sure it might be hot and heavy and full of a murderous rage, but its still my hair and I love it.  So if you ever read a story about a man whose face was burnt to a crisp or was suffocated on his own hair, think of me and know that’s how I would have liked to have gone.

Out of the Mouth of Babes

I kid you not, this is the conversation I had with my 5-year-old stepdaughter Mogwai (not her real name, in case you think her mother is a real whack-a-doo) on our way home from kindergarten.

Mog: I had a dream with Jesus in it.

Me: Oh yeah?

Mog: Uh-huh.  And he said for me to come to him.  So I did.

Me: Then what happened?

Mog: It was really you!

Me: <pause> I was Jesus?

Mog: Yeah!  And I hugged you!

Me: Well that’s nice.

Mog: And then you died on the cross.

Me: <pause> That’s…not so nice.

Mog: Because you wanted to be king.

Me: I see.

Mog: And so you died on the cross.

Me: Huh.

I should explain that I have shoulder length brown hair and often sport a short beard, so this isn’t the first time I’ve been compared physically to Jesus.  I’ve had friends jokingly refer to me as such for years and even had a few people drive by and yell it at me as I walk down the street.  It’s not an uncommon occurence to say the least. However, to have a 5-year-old make the connection is a bit disconcerting.  I wasn’t sure what to say to her revelation.

So I just nodded my head in vague interest, as one normally does at the nattering of a child and wandered off onto my own meandering thoughts.  Primarily that, if I am sent here to save the souls of mankind, we are all in big BIG trouble.  I can barely be bothered to take the garbage out on a regular basis, let alone anything of that grandiose level.  As for being virtuous, well…I wouldn’t call myself a bad person, but I am far from a saint.  And that whole martyr thing?  Not my cup of tea, really.

So if push comes to shove and I’m your savior, you may want to invest into some yoga classes so you can learn to kiss your behind goodbye.

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