Try 6-17-34-37-41-39

July 1, 2009
The Powerball soared up to $222 million the other night. I bought a ticket.

by Mark Hartley
[email protected]

The Powerball soared up to $222 million the other night. I bought a ticket. A blah day of work had just ended when I stopped by the convenience store. So, yeah, I entertained the brief fantasies of what I would do if I won.

My three kids are all over the age of 21 now. They would eventually inherit most of the money anyway. I seriously doubt I would live my life much more extravagantly than I do now.

(Note to golf pro: Juice up that cart a little extra, because you’re about to see a whole lot more of me.)

I teased my fantasy with offering the kids an interim choice while waiting for an inheritance — something the kids could receive annually. So far, the kids tend to live on the opposite side of the planet from me. It’s not that they intensely dislike their mother or me. They are, uh, an adventuresome group of kids. The smaller annual stipend from the lottery winnings would be if they chose to live in Timbuktu. A larger stipend would be for the choice to reside somewhere in North America.

Dad wants them a little closer to the nest. He’s doesn’t think Skype is as pleasant as sitting with them out in the shade of the oak tree in the backyard.

Either way, the stipends would modestly supplement their annual incomes, make the purchase of bigger ticket items a little easier. I remember the weight of buying the first car, first washing machine, first refrigerator, etc.

I don’t believe the stereotypes of wealthy young people on television or movies. The fictional characters are spoiled brats who believe they are above the law and other rules of society. Many young people enjoy financial wealth in a responsible and charitable manner.

However, when you’re young, I believe it is important to savor the tapestry of life. If you can’t financially flee working for a living, you develop an understanding of what it’s like to labor alongside both idiots and geniuses, as well as both colleagues with a good heart and colleagues who are obsessed with goals regardless of who’s in the way.

If you miss out on that, as a young person, can you honestly say you have lived?

RDH is a magazine for dental hygienists. The magazine has delivered its pokes and jabs in portraying dentists as ill-suited business managers, portraying associations of dentists as being rather Machiavellian in denying care to the underserved by hygienists, and portraying dental companies as being more interested in a buck than providing quality materials and equipment that nobly assist in the defeat of disease.

As steamed as we can get, we also are fully aware that Doc is a wonderful dentist, the ADA has guided the profession remarkably well over the last 100 years, and most dental manufacturers are a very reliable source of information.

Still, dental hygiene’s voice is a vital part of the tapestry of dentistry. Dental hygienists are going to disagree with certain approaches to oral health. Retorting that dental hygienists are undereducated, dangerous to society, or just plain troublesome is just going to make them angrier.

I knew a fellow once who viewed life as being a very large customer service department. He would enlighten me about the flaws and incompetence about the products and services he encountered since our last visit. I got kind of bored with it and typically shrugged it off in a people-make-mistakes sort of way. His positive quality was that he was a very generous man who was insightful about topics that did not require any sort of payment from him. Otherwise, I would have avoided him.

How do I mercifully end this attempt at deep thoughts?

Let’s all try 6-17-34-37-41-39 on July 29, and we’ll split the pot. Retire to a tropical island together.