What are the odds of this lottery ticket?
Answer: Pretty good and pretty bad.
You see, once in a while I’ll play Lotto6/49. It’s a Canadian game, doesn’t pay like the US lotteries, but I enjoy it. Sometime’s when I’m around a lotto machine, I’ll have an extra $2.00 and lust longingly after whatever jackpot amount they post in front of me. I’ll then turn to the man and say “Quick-pick, 6/49, no encore”.
That’s it. That’s my chance. I’m in, and so far, my odds of winning are way better than a few minutes ago. What was a 0% chance just became a .000000009% chance.
A “Quick-Pick” is a quick ticket that a machine prints. I don’t have to circle my numbers, fill in an examination, or anything. The computer picks 6 random numbers, from 1 to 49, and spits them out on a ticket.
It’s all so easy, and happens within 5 seconds. So I thank the man, he tips his hat, and I walk out to find something to do on a Monday night.
The numbers get chosen on Wednesday and Saturday nights. Wednesday night, and I was ready. Ready to whisk my wife and I away to a life more than ordinary.
7 numbers are chosen. 6 regular numbers, and 1 BONUS number.
So I checked out the LottoLore for the latest numbers. Here’s what the prize layout was for that night.
Wed, October 3, 2007 – Lotto 6/49
3 17 18 24 31 32 Bonus 42
Prize Matches Amount Winners 1st 6 “$15477335.00 “ 1 2nd 5 + Bonus “$90932.00 “ 5 3rd 5 “$1428.10 “ 263 4th 4 $51.90 ”13709″ 5th 3 $10.00 “222912” 6th 2 + Bonus $5.00 “135753”
So, as you can see, I only got 1 number. That’s so bad, I’m not even on that spreadsheet above. Here’s how I feel about the prizes:
- 6th – great.
- 5th – kinda worse than 6th, cause it ain’t much more.
- 4th – hey, I’m not gonna argue with 50 bucks.
- 3rd – well, alright!!! A couple of grand would be PERFECT
- 2nd – WOW! That’s like winning double, cause you gotta slam that down on the mortgage, thereby saving probably just as much interest over the 10 years of payments
- 1st – buy a new house, buy whatever you want!
I was wafting in disappointment, staring at the screen, and allowing my eye to wander down the page. I spotted a previous draw. Here’s what it was:
Sat, September 8, 2007 – Lotto 6/49 3 8 16 20 24 25 Bonus 23
ARE YOU KIDDING ME?
Anger. Fiery red flames. Flared nostrils. That bloody machine had sold me an almost duplicate set of number to a recent winner.
That was a 5-number matching ticket on September 8th.
So, the next time someone asks you if those “randomly generated numbers” are indeed, random, you won’t have a good enough answer, but you’ll be able to say, “I read this blog once…”