Mega Millions Lottery Proves the West Coast Is Luckier

Emily Abbate

mega millionsMillions of lottery players in 41 states (and Washington D.C.), including yours truly, were extremely disappointed last night and this morning with the announcement of the Mega Millions winning numbers

But two lucky winners, one in Washington and another in Idaho, will split the second-largest jackpot ever of $355,000,000. Each winner will receive $177.5 million, before giving Uncle Sam his very generous cut, of course.

The lucky numbers: 4, 8, 15, 25, 47, and the Mega Ball Number: 42.

So after I got over being a sore loser -- I just had to find out, how did everyone else stack up?

The Mega Millions site gives up-to-date information on the winners of all other matching numbers, most of which came from New York (11 total) and Massachusetts (6).

Sixty-seven people, who matched 5 of the winning numbers and did not accurately guess the Mega Ball Number, will receive $250,000. A step down, those who matched four numbers and the Mega Ball Number (323 total winners) will win $10,000. The rest isn't as exciting, going from $150, downward.

I had purchased six tickets, only after my coworker reminded me about last night's big drawing. And jokingly, as we walked out of the office -- we both said, "Hope not to see you tomorrow!" FYI, we're both here, and I'm pretty sure now, after losing, I have an idea of better ways I can use $6.

1. A $5 foot-long at Subway. That's lunch AND dinner. And a moderate calorie intake that will keep me on track. I could even get a cookie and still be under $6. But I guess that cookie ruins the whole safe calorie thing, huh?

2. Invest it. Right, I know what you're thinking: What is a measly $6 investment going to do for me? You're being too much of a pessimist, my friend. I'm sure you'll be singing a different tune when you pocket the $6 you'd be spending on lottery every day. After it turns into $300 after 30 weeks, you buy a share of Apple stock, and POW! You're rich.

4. Four coffees. Coffee gets me through a work day. The idea of getting free coffee has even encouraged me to conquer my fear of needles and donate blood. A tall coffee at Starbucks is $1.50. Do the math, and you have a day's worth of caffeine.

5. Donate it. Donating to charity not only gives you a great tax deduction, but feels good. Since it's the tax time of year again, there's really no better way to give away $6. Especially when your chances of actually winning the lottery are one in a bajillion. Technically, for Mega Millions, they're 1 in 135,145,920. It still feels like a bajillion. 

With odds like this, I've surely learned my lesson. Mega Millions, you're just not worth the frustration.

Did you play the Mega Millions lottery last night?

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