It’s been a shit week, and we’ve lost some people who we may not have known personally or even ever met, but who were nevertheless important to us, and the world. Just because you weren’t friends with your idol doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to grieve. So if your heart feels a little or a lot broken right now, know that there are a few people out there on whom the sun is shining extra bright.
Those goddamn Powerball winners.
Here are just a few indications that not all is broken, and that good things are still possible.
First of all, there was a story going around that a 27-year-old hedge fund bro millionaire had picked a winning ticket. This story, which had absolute crap quotes about already having more money than anyone could need and therefore this 1.6 billion just being “icing on the cake,” as well as mentioning his plans to buy “another yacht,” mercifully turned out to be fake. It was published by the satirical site United Media Publishing, but since the site tends to lack both humor and disclaimers, it got picked up by other outlets.
Rest easy, though. As far as we know, no millionaires got richer by spending $30,000 on lottery tickets last night.
Next up, another story about a person who didn’t actually win, but at least this one is heartwarming.
As I started putting this list together, I was prepared to write about the 67-year-old Pomona, California nurse who was reported to have won after being gifted a ticket by her boss, Shlomo Rechnitz. Apparently, that turned out to be a “misunderstanding,” and she didn’t actually win the jackpot.
So why am I including it? Because the part of the story that IS true (as far as I can tell, and hopefully doesn’t prove false) is that Rechnitz is still a man who runs a nursing home in Southern California, and who bought 18,000 (that’s $36,000 he spent) tickets for his employees and residents, sending many by mail to over 80 nursing homes across the state. He reportedly included the message “We will provide the ticket. You provide the dream.” with each ticket.
So even if that nurse didn’t win, Rechnitz is a man that exists, and who works in an often thankless, possibly harrowing business of caring for the elderly. That is the person we want looking after our grandparents, our parents, us, and the whole world.
Also, even if we don’t know who won the Powerball yet, we do know that a winning ticket was bought at a 7-11 in Chino Hills, California. Which means that the owner of that store (and, presumably— although I don’t know anything about how other states do these things— the other two stores that sold winning tickets) gets a $1 million cut. That’s pretty freaking cool for the owner of a convenience store.
Finally, for whoever did win all that money, this is a fun, potentially EXTREMELY harmful bonus. According to, you know, science, if the winner collects their earnings in one dollar bills, they can also collect up to 35 pounds of free trace cocaine. Hooray!