With the $800 million Powerball lottery jackpot drawing on Saturday, I decided I need to get a piece of this action! So, I asked people at work if they were interested in pooling our funds together to purchase the tickets in order to increase our already minuscule odds at winning.
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Basically, the game plan goes like this. Say, 50 people chip in $2 apiece for a total of $100, which gets us 50 entries (1 entry is $2). So, instead of going solo and having my chance at 1 out of 200,000,000, it's now 50 out of 200,000,000. Yeah, I know. Like that extra 49 entries are going to help.
I get it. But, I am a half-full kind of guy, so having 50 chances is better than just having one chance. And who knows, if we get that winning ticket, I'll be the last one laughing.
So, anyway, back to the original point (sorry, I got a little sidetracked).
I got a few coworkers to participate, whom got excited and reached out to other coworkers, whom were mostly white. We gathered a good number of participants (don't even ask me how many, 'cause I lost count). A brief while later, I bumped into one of my coworkers, a Black woman, in the break room, and asked if she was participating in the Team Lotto pooling.
Her: What?! I wasn't notified of the lotto pooling.
Me: Really?! (How did nobody not include her on this grand opportunity?! I mean, the other coworkers who I told first who went to tell others happen to reach people who were basically sitting all around her. I mean, left, right, up, and down the aisles. I was so surprised.)
Me: Well, I'm glad I reached you, 'cause it's not too late. (Then I described to her how we're going about this.)
If we were to win the $800 million lotto and had not reached out to our Black coworker that day, she wouldn't have been able to cash in on this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. I'm glad I reached out to her, and that she's in Team Lotto.
At the end of our conversation, I couldn't help but wonder if, during the course of our recruitment process, we somehow reached out to white people in preference to Black people to join in on Team Lotto.
And more importantly, on the larger scale, how often are Black people overlooked for opportunities that they could have obtained? Team Lotto? Job opportunities? Promotions? Pay raises? Apartment rental approvals? Offer being accepted for a home? Dating? Modeling contracts?
What can we do, as a society, to be more inclusive of Black people, so that they too, can join in on the fun of a pooled lotto, even if we don't hit it big?
As an Igbo proverb says:
"If I am in heaven, then my brother has no business in hell."
P.S. - If you win the lotto, what are the top 3 things you would do?