With the Powerball Lottery Jackpot up to 400 million dollars on Wednesday, I am definitely buying a ticket, but not because I actually think I will win. I know the odds against it are astronomical. I know with that much money on the line, there must be 1000 times as many people buying tickets. I know I am throwing away $2… but I am going to do it anyways. Why? It makes me feel hope. Don’t take that the wrong way. I am not feeling down or depressed. I am not regretting my life’s choices. I love my life, my family and my job but life as we live is “the long play”. We have to work hard to achieve long term goals, like; “After I’m done with high school, I will tour Europe for a year…”, “After college I am going to hike the Appalachian Trail,” “Once we get that loan paid off…” Everything we work towards in life take years of hard work and effort to achieve. Musicians must take lessons and practice and play for years and years with no guarantee of greatness. Doctors look forward to 12 years of college and unbelievable debt to achieve their dream. Everything we do takes huge amounts of time to achieve greatness, except the lottery. It’ s $2 bucks and a couple of crossed fingers, that’s all the effort it takes. Sure, there are strategies for “long playing” the lottery. You could play the same numbers every week for your entire life… and still not win. You can take out millions of dollars in loans to try and beat the odds… and still lose. You can team up with everybody you know for a small piece of the big prize… and still lose. The reality is, no matter how you play the lottery, how hard you work, how much you plan, you cannot change the odds. You will most likely lose. Which translates as “no one has any more advantage than I do.” No matter how rich, no matter lucky, no matter how many lawyers on retainer I throw at the problem, you cannot change the fact that we will all probably lose on Wednesday. When have you ever experienced that before in life? “His dad is the coach…”, “Their father’s worked at the same firm together…”, “Her mom graduated from there, she will definitely get accepted…” None of that applies here. You have the exact same odds of success as everyone else does, and it will only cost you two dollars and a couple of crossed fingers.