What are the Odds?



Did you know that the odds of winning the Powerball are 1 in 175,223,510?

Is that something you would want to invest your money in? What if I told you that 70% of Americans lose their money within a few years of experiencing a sudden windfall, such as the lottery or an inheritance? At least that’s according to this infographic Mint put together. Why is that so, I wonder. Maybe it’s because people who experience a sudden windfall like that don’t appreciate the value of money because they didn’t have to work to get it. There are too many tragic stories of lottery winners losing it all.

So help me understand how the lottery works. We take our hard earned cash and rather than putting it toward building our financial freedom, we flush it down the lottery toilet, hoping against hope that somehow we’ll get a winning ticket and then blow all our money in just a few years. That sounds like the perfect way to build financial security! Anyway, let’s talk about some of the things that are more likely to happen to you than winning the Powerball.


Dying in an asteroid apocalypse (12,500 to 1) – 2036 here we come!


Dating a supermodel (88,000 to 1) – So you’re telling me there’s a chance.


Injury by toothbrush (99,340 to 1) – You know how I know the toothbrush was invented in Arkansas? If it were invented anywhere else, it would have been called a teethbrush. 

gold medal

Winning a gold medal (662,000 to 1) – So THAT explains the Jamaican bobsled team


Dying from being left-handed (4,400,000 to 1) – Over 2,500 lefties are killed each year while using equipment meant for right-handed people. 


Becoming president (10,000,000 to 1) – Mitt Romney’s chances probably went below this after that 47 percent comment…


Becoming an astronaut (12,100,000 to 1) – Every boy’s dream. Except for mine. I just wanted to play Nintendo every day for the rest of my life.


Birthing identical quadruplets (13,000,000 to 1) – “If you want to know what it’s like having a fourth, just imagine you’re drowning…and someone hands you a baby.” – Jim Gaffigan


Be canonized a saint – (20,000,000 to 1) – You just have to die first.


Picking a perfect NCAA bracket (13,460,000 to 1) – Pretty sure I was perfect through…2 games last year.


Death by vending machine (112,000,000 to 1) – 2 people die per year getting crushed by a vending machine. Snack responsibly, people.


Luckily, though, you’re more likely to win the Powerball than you are to die by a falling coconut, the odds of which happening are 250,000,000 to one. I especially like this sign because it looks like the coconuts are flinging themselves at people.

So there you have it, peeps. Pay for Powerball tickets if you wish, but there are waaaaaaay better ways to use your money to reach financial freedom, and all of them involve goals, hard work and accountability.

Watch out for those coconuts!


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