Lottery time and Song Lyrics

Ok, call me a saint or a sinner….it don’t really matter.

There’s a really big lottery coming up tonight. Around 297 million dollars. I really hope that I win it. I could sure use it. Least I think I could.

I guess a lot of people feel that way don’t they? One thing about the lottery is that it’s a cheap dream for a lot of people. What else can you pay a dollar for and get such wonderful daydreams about? I know a lot of people say it’s gambling and you ought not to waste your money on it, but I betcha’ that a lot of them put up a few dollars when it gets up in the 200 million+ range. I bet there are even a few preachers out there who secretly shell out a few bucks on it. I don’t blame them. I don’t think it would be a sin if they won it. After all, they would probably give most of it to their churches, and keep just enough to be comfortable, wouldn’t they?

After taxes and all, I heard it would be about a 90 million dollar take home. I sit around and think about what to do with all that money. First thing everyone wants to do, of course is quit their jobs. That’s a prerequisite isn’t it? I don’t have a job now, so I guess I could skip that one…or maybe keeping up with that money would be my new job. Next thing is to go out and buy a new car and house. I know of a house close by this little town I live in that I want. It’s up on the mountain and they want a couple hundred thousand or so for it. Chicken feed after tonight! And that car? I have always liked those sleek Jaguars, no Porches though. Nothing too pretentious mind you. And then, I would pay off the few companies I owe money to. Otherwise, I am going to be paying them until the day I die. After that, who knows?

Maybe a little Norwalk Terrier to go with the dogs I have now for a pet. Take a trip to Disney World, and actually stay on site for once. Buy my wife a better diamond. Give my kid’s a million or two. After that, I guess I would just have to figure out some kind of hobby that I enjoy. I think I would buy a little RV, a small one… and go around to flea markets and antique malls and look for things to resell and make money on. I kind of enjoy looking for unfound treasures, I guess. That way I could do a little traveling. But then again, I don’t have much of a desire to go off too far. I’m not sure about the trips to Europe and all that stuff. I might like to take that Cruise that goes down the East Coast of the U.S. though.

One thing they always say about people who win big lotteries, is that it messes up their lives big time. I would like to think that I could handle it, but who knows. I’d like to try it and see.

How’s that old Rock and Roll song go?

“The best things in life are free
But you can keep ’em for the birds and bees.
Now gimme money (that’s what I want)
That’s what I want (that’s what I want)
That’s what I want (that’s what I want), oh-yeh,
That’s what I want.”

Or then there’s that other one that they play on “The Apprentice” :

“Money money money money, money
Some people got to have it
Some people really need it
Listen to me y’all, do things, do things, do bad things with it
You wanna do things, do things, do things, good things with it
Talk about cash money, money
Talk about cash money- dollar bills, yall”

Really though I like this song by John Mayer:

Me and all my friends
We’re all misunderstood
They say we stand for nothing and
There’s no way we ever could
Now we see everything is going wrong
With the world and those who lead it
We just feel like we don’t have the means
To rise above and beat it

So we keep waiting (waiting)
Waiting on the world to change
We keep on waiting (waiting)
Waiting on the world to change
It’s hard to beat the system
When we’re standing at a distance
So we keep waiting (waiting)
Waiting on the world to change

Now if we had the power
To bring our neighbors home from war
They woulda never missed a Christmas
No more ribbons on the door
When you trust your television
What you get is what you got ’cause when they own the information ooohhh,
They can bend it all they want!

That’s why we’re waiting (waiting)
Waiting on the world to change
We keep on waiting (waiting)
Waiting on the world to change
It’s not that we don’t care
We just know that the fight ain’t fair
So we keep waiting (waiting)
Waiting on the world to change
We’re still waiting (waiting)
Waiting on the world to change
We keep on waiting (waiting)
Waiting on the world to change

One day our generation
Is gonna rule the population
So we keep on waiting (waiting)
Waiting on the world to change
Now we keep on waiting (waiting)
Waiting on the world to change
We keep on waiting (waiting)

Waiting on the world to change
Waiting on the world to change
Waiting on the world to change
Waiting on the world to change

Guess I really don’t “need” that lottery money after all…maybe I could “use” it though and try and change the world what little I could…

Old Time Christmas

The ghost of Christmas past.

Every year without fail it comes. It’s that time of year again when my nerves become as jangled as old St. Nick’s jingle bells.

I can’t help it. I’ve tried, but to no avail. Every December 25th, right after all the wrapping paper has been torn off of all the presents (usually a TON of them…really…) I start saying to myself: “next year, I am not putting myself through the strain of trying to get so much…to do so much” but, when next year rolls around…..this year now, I start getting that feeling down in my gut that I am just not going to have enough dough, ray, mi to get what I feel like I need to get. Sometimes it get’s to the point where it downright depresses me.

I know when I was a kid, a lot of my best memories of Christmas were, or course at my Grandparent’s home. But, I guarantee you right now that they were a site simpler Christmases than now. One year that I remember really vividly was back in the mid 60’s I guess. We didn’t usually go up there until a few days before Christmas day. And guess what? Grandma didn’t have her Christmas stuff already out! That’s right; she didn’t get it out the day after Halloween like some of us do now. She didn’t have too much stuff anyway. One medium size cardboard box and that was it.

For some unknown reason that year, I went out with Grandma to cut a tree. Grandma was appointed to all that kind of stuff because of Grandpa’s arthritis in his knees. I can’t remember when he didn’t have it. Besides, he was the type who thought if Grandma needed a tree, then SHE should be the one to get it. We walked for a good piece, up and down some rolling hills. Finally, Grandma spotted a little pine tree. It was about a 4 footer, and had pretty, fully needled limbs. We took the saw and cut it down, and I drug it back to the house. Out came the cardboard box, and my brother and I, and Grandma put on the decorations. Everyone else just sort of hung back and watched. It was great fun! We had to be oh so careful with those glass ornaments, and even had to replace one or two of those big old bulbs on the one strand of red lights that she owned.

When we were through, and plugged in the lights, that little pine became transformed into a veritable “Times Square” beauty. I don’t think it would have won any contests of ANY kind. But for us, it was good. Very good.

My brother and I usually only had two or three presents each at Christmas. There was one “main” present, which usually never exceeded a twenty dollar price tag. Then there were a couple of smaller ones. Grandpa always delivered, with a stocking full of fruit. Oranges, apples, sliced orange candy, peppermint sticks (the soft ones) and all types of assorted nuts. I really looked forward to that stocking! Then, when we visited O’ Zion Baptist Church for their Christmas program, we ended up getting that wonderful brown paper bag full of the same kinds of goodies. The sliced orange candy was ALWAYS my favorite!

I don’t know when things changed, but somewhere along the line they certainly did. The stores all have gotten larger. Then of course we have had the development of Wal-Mart, the king of merchandising. With them around to push the small Mom and Pop businesses into bankruptcy, the way that Christmas has been perceived and promoted has changed tremendously. Every year it’s pushed up by a day or two. It used to be that it was right after Thanksgiving before you saw anything “Christmas” come out. Then, they moved it up a couple of weeks. They have kept moving and moving it until now the Trick or Treater’s are not off of the streets and into their beds, before the Christmas stuff comes out.

It’s not the same stuff either. I looked and looked the other day to try and find something that wasn’t made in China. I finally did. It was made in Viet Nam. I went through a JC Penney store the other day and looked at clothing and found made in Egypt, Viet Nam, Peru, Nicaragua, Singapore, South Africa, etc. You name it. The only thing I found in the whole store in 30 minutes of looking that was made in the U.S., was good old “Cannon” towels.

Well, back where I started. The feeling in the gut. It’s a little worse than usual this year. My situation is a little tenuous, and money is going to be really short. This MAY just be the year when I am forced to do what I think about every year and cut back. Besides, I am not really sure that I want to make China’s economy any better than it already is…or Viet Nam’s for that matter.

Maybe I should go out in the woods and cut down a little old pine tree, just for old time’s sake. (If the pulp wood guys haven’t gotten them all!)